ARE YOU ALIGNED WITH GOD’S PURPOSES?
One of the main reasons Christians never see their dream or vision realized is that they never come to this place of divine alignment, where they begin to say the same thing God says and do it the way God wants it done. Again, God insists on this because He wants to bring forth Christ-likeness in the lives of His people.
If you hold fast to the profession of your faith by saying the same words as God’s Word, you are choosing to align your life with His life.
As you align yourself with God, you become more like Him. His plan is not just to bless you, nor does He want you to do it His way just to prove your obedience to Him. He wants to transform you from the inside out and make you into the image of Jesus Christ.
When you receive a word from the Lord, you find out very quickly whether or not you’re walking in divine alignment. God probably intended for Sarah and Abraham to celebrate the birth of their baby nine months after receiving the word from Heaven that they were going to have a child. But because Abraham was totally out of alignment, it took him several decades to receive the promised child, Isaac.
For years after receiving the promise of a son, Abraham tried to figure everything out on his own instead of waiting on the Lord’s perfect plan. God could do nothing to bring the promise to pass until Abraham finally decided to leave everything in the Lord’s hands and do it His way (in other words, until Abraham finally came into divine alignment).
We find out just how aligned we are with God when we receive a word from Him telling us to do something different than we’re used to. For example, when the Holy Spirit directed me to move my family to the Soviet Union and help establish churches in the great revival that was taking place there, my first reaction was not, “Yes, Lord, send me!” In fact, I cried out in pain, “But what about our ministry in America, Lord?”
Denise and I had spent the previous six years traveling across the United States, working hard as we strove to accomplish what God had called us to do, and everything was finally beginning to fall into place. Major ministers were starting to recognize our teaching ministry and were recommending my books. We had to turn down meeting after meeting as we prayerfully arranged our schedule. And, most importantly, people were being saved, healed, delivered, and strengthened through our ministry.
Now it seemed like God was asking us to give up all that had been accomplished. Just when all the seed we had sown through the years was finally producing a rich harvest, I thought that God was telling us to give the farm away! But there was no mistaking God’s direction to us. To be honest, it was a great struggle for me to come to a place of surrender and obedience regarding God’s call on our lives to minister in the Soviet Union. And as I wrestled with the decision to obey, I found out just how “out of divine alignment” I was!
First, I tried to buy off God. I told Him that I’d send the missionaries in the Soviet Union all the teaching tapes they wanted. Not only that, I promised, but I would also give as much financial support to their ministries and to other missionaries in the world as the Lord directed me to give. Still, God’s word to me remained unchanged: Move to the Soviet Union.
When my first tactic didn’t seem to satisfy God, I agreed to make a trip to Russia with some other evangelists, hoping that the visit would appease God and relieve me of this terrible burden in my heart. Instead, the trip served to drive the “Holy Spirit hook” deeper into my heart, for I fell in love with the Russian people.
Finally, I thought my deliverance would surely come when I told my wife that God was telling me that we were supposed to move to the Soviet Union. Instead of bursting into tears and strongly arguing against the idea of making such a drastic move, Denise tearfully and joyfully agreed that this was God’s plan and we had to obey.
There was no way around it now! If we were going to obey God and walk in divine alignment with His plan and purpose for our lives, we would have to move to the USSR.
So I made the official announcement, taking great pleasure in boldly proclaiming the word of the Lord for our lives. Then this great man of faith went home and hung his head over a toilet bowl for 24 hours, waiting for the next vomiting spell! Anxiety flowed through my veins; worry filled my mind; and nothing I did helped to relax me.
All I could think about was the prospect of my family going broke and losing our home in the United States. I worried about the ministry going down the tubes and our staff members not being able to feed and clothe their families. Money, money, money! How would we ever manage?
When I finally received and acted on this word from the Lord, everything in me that wasn’t in alignment with God’s will came rushing to the surface, along with every ounce of doubt and unbelief still residing in my soul. All I could think about was money! Over and over I cried out in my heart, Lord, what will happen to our ministry if I obey You? Finally, I not only heard the Holy Spirit’s answer, but I also began to understand what He was trying to tell me.
He spoke these words to my heart: “What will you MISS if you don’t obey Me?” That question brought me to a new place of surrender in my walk with God.