It was just after 3 a.m., and I was walking up to my front porch having just completed a nightwatch prayer shift at our church. The Lord had been speaking to me that week about change, but I didn't know what He was referring to.
And I had been seeking Him for more clarification. As I headed towards my porch, my eyes gazed down to the ground and to a dragonfly lying on the pavement. I thought it might be dead and gave it a little nudge with my foot. Apparently it was only napping and it gave me a loud angry buzz in response.
I felt the breath of God in that moment. I rushed inside my home to research on my computer the symbolic meaning for "dragonfly." I was not surprised to see that this beautiful insect was often a sign for "change." The Bible says that God speaks through His creation, and He was definitely speaking here. We need to prepare for change.
The disciples of John had been questioning Jesus about fasting. "Why do we and the Pharisees fast often, but your disciples do not fast (Matt 9:14)?" Jesus took the opportunity to give John's disciples a lesson about change. Using highly visual language, Jesus explained why there was no reason to fast as long as He was around. He then revealed that He would soon be gone and His disciples would start fasting then.
Contrasting old and new wineskins, Jesus instructs on the need to be flexible with the upcoming change. New wine can't go into old wineskins or it will break and be ruined! Only new wineskins can hold new wine (v. 17).
Prepare yourself to be flexible with upcoming change. You were redeemed to increase, but inflexibility will reduce you. Inflexibility will ruin you. If change, or even the thought of change, makes you anxious, you need to "fret not" because His peace will anchor you.
His Peace Keeps You Steady
Jesus portrayed perfect peace when He and His disciples set sail to the Gadarenes and a deadly storm rose up in the middle of their voyage (Mark 4). The disciples panicked while Jesus slept peacefully in the stern of the boat. You probably know the story, but the frightened disciples finally woke Jesus up to do something about it. He rebuked the storm with the powerful command, "Peace, be still!" And then He rebuked His disciples for not having any faith. Jesus stopped a storm with peace and apparently you can, too.
The peace of God is tangible. It's also a sign that God's kingdom has invaded a chaotic situation and set it in order. "Of the increase of His government and peace, there will be no end (Is. 9:7)." For example, a woman in our church had torn the meniscus disc in her knee and was scheduled for surgery. When I put my hand on her knee, I felt the tangible peace of Jesus leave my hand. I didn't feel power as expected, but I felt liquid peace! She was healed of all pain instantly and walked up three flights of stairs the next day.
Another time, I was in Beijing leading a group of Chinese men and women in prayer. A few of them were Christians, but most were not. As I prayed, one woman spoke out in English saying, "I don't believe in your God, but when you prayed I felt a strong peace come into me!" I responded, "That's Jesus! He's talking to you!" She was visibly touched having her heart arrested by His supernatural peace.
Jesus said, "Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you ... Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid (John 14:27)." We have a choice to fret or to remain steady during seasons of personal and national change. His peace is instantly accessible and powerful. It anchors us on the inside when it looks like trouble and uncertainty on the outside. We can navigate any change because His peace governs our soul.
Become Rock Solid
Just recently, I watched two ministries go down in flames in one week because of sin. It was sad! Yes, the devil is on the prowl. Yes, the devil takes aim at ministers (the shepherds) in order to scatter the flock. At the same time, the Word is very clear as to why someone stands or falls in a storm.
Jesus said, "Whoever hears these sayings of Mine and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on a rock (Matt. 7:24)." He goes on to explain that a man who does His sayings will not fall down even in the worst storm. On the other hand, those who don't do His sayings will most certainly fail under pressure.
My husband and I have always been "Word" people. It seemed obsessive at first, but I'm so grateful at this season in our lives that we chose to immerse ourselves in the written Word each and every day. In the night, in the morning time, and as we drive to and from our various destinations, there is one constant in our lives—it's the steady hearing and study of the Word of God.
There are many who don't do His sayings, not because they aren't willing to, but because they don't know what He has said. They don't commit their lives to reading or hearing His word. The prophet Hosea said it well, "My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge ... (Hos. 4:6)."
How is your Word life? It's time to get obsessed with it. Permanently obsessed. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God (Rom. 10:17). It's not about hearing the Word once. It's about hearing it over and over. And in seasons of change, you'll remain rock solid because you've heard His Word and remained in His Word.
While others are crashing, you'll be left standing. That's the power and strength of His Word in your life.
Our Blessing Comes From His Presence
Obed-Edom, the priest, was surprised by the arrival of the ark of the covenant to his household (2 Sam. 6). The ark was the presence of God to Israel, and King David had delivered it to his home on an emergency order. Apparently, the king had failed to transport it from Abinadab's home to the city of Jerusalem properly. David should have carried the ark on the shoulders of the priests, but instead he placed it on a cart being pulled by oxen. When the cart stumbled and the ark began to slip, Uzziah reached out to steady the ark and was struck dead by the holiness of the Lord. Apparently you can't make your own rules when it comes to carrying the presence of God.
It was a miserable event, and David put up the ark in Obed-Edom's home temporarily until he could sort out what to do. Because of the ark, an unusual blessing came upon Obed-Edom's household. The Bible doesn't specify what that blessing was, but an online Jewish Encyclopedia proposed that supernatural increase came upon the home. This encouraged King David to search out the proper order for handling the ark so he could transfer it properly to Mount Zion. He did so successfully, thus bringing the entire city of Jerusalem under the blessing of God's presence.
The ark of the covenant teaches us about the nature of His presence. Where His presence is, there will be the blessing of increase. I know this to be true having seen it in my own church. For example, during one year we saw three households supernaturally released from their mortgages while another household was supernaturally released from their car loan. Around the same time, a dairy farmer had three sets of calf twins in about nine months, which is almost unheard of. The blessing of His presence is tangible and manifests with visible results.
In seasons of change, people often worry about their provision and safety and this is where compromise occurs. They think their preferred presidential candidate, a perfect healthcare system, or a glowing secular economy is what will solve all their problems! These things do affect us, but Jesus is the great problem solver. We are once again being directed to trust His Word and to trust His Spirit and prepare our lives to be distinguished by heavenly miracles.
The Holy Spirit is reminding us that, "... No good thing will He withhold from the one who walks uprightly (Ps. 84:11)." You will triumph in change.
Jennifer Eivaz is a vibrant minister and international conference speaker who carries the wisdom and fire of the Holy Spirit. She presently serves as an Executive Pastor with Harvest Christian Center in Turlock, California, and is focused on raising up a passionate and effective prayer community that is tempered with love and hears the voice of God accurately. Jennifer loves the presence of God and is a prophetic voice to her church and to others. Her teaching style is authentic and aimed at the heart, having been built on her personal testimony of God's incredible goodness and miraculous display in her life and in the life of her church. Jennifer is a graduate of Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Oklahoma. She is married to HCC's Senior Pastor Ron Eivaz, and they have two wonderful children. She's a featured writer for several online publications including the Elijah List and Charisma Magazine. She's also written a book titled The Intercessors Handbook.
For the original article, visit jennifereivazblog.com.
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