"But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:" 1 Peter 3:15 (KJV)
From The Land Of My Affliction
Look around; what do you see? Family issues, you hate your job, you don’t see your dreams enter the door of your reality and it seems like pain is become consistent. You have lost friends at the sounds of betrayals; frustration accompanies your soul every night.
Look around; what do you see? A college career that was ended because of financial difficulties or because of decisions guided by the lord of your stupidity? Is that divorce still visits the living rooms of your regrets? How long Lord? You cried out to God, how long before I see the promise land of my destiny?
The children of Israel did not realize that God was with then all those 40 years on that desert. Their clothing looked like new and their shoes were of better quality than any shoes sponsored by Michael Jordan, for God caused the laws of nature to bowed down before His people. In the desert He sustained them.
What can we say about Joseph? He knew the love of his father Jacob; but the hate of his brothers took him to inhumane places. Joseph was mocked just for having dreams. Have you being mocked for yours? He was sold as a slave, separated from his dear father and from his hometown. But as a slave he prospered. Over a lie he was thrown in prison, but in prison he prospered.
In Genesis 41 we see that finally Joseph’s gift of interpreting dreams open the doors of freedom and prosperity for Him. After he interpreted the dreams of Pharaoh, this 30 year old Hebrew man became the second most powerful man in the whole land of the most powerful nation at the time; the great nation of Egypt.
I am sure Joseph cried; I am sure he missed his dad, his hometown, etcetera. But Joseph gave us a lesson that is able to minister to you and I today. In Genesis 41:52 Joseph stated, “For God has caused me to be fruitful in the land of my affliction.” (NKJV)
Are you in the land of your affliction right now? Look around, what do you see? God is already prospering you. Your afflictions are developing the spiritual muscles you need to carry the success God has for you. Your afflictions are giving you the humility to carry and give God the glory.
Look around, are you still alive? Do you have a place to stay? Do you have a car? Do you have a job? Do you still have wife, a husband? Are your children still around? Beloved, if you just take a second and look, you will see that God is already blessing you, even in the mix of your affliction.
You know how I know, because He blessed me in the mix of tragedy. He blessed me in the mix of great tears and He blessed me in the mix of a divorce. He blessed me in one of the largest cities in the world Jacksonville, Florida, the largest one in the USA. He blessed me when I knew no English; He blessed me in Gates County, the poorest county out of the 100 hundred counties in North Carolina and He blessed me with jobs in the mix of one of the largest unemployment rates this nation has ever face. And yes…He disciplined me for my sins, but gave me mercy to get up again and keep fighting.
Today, He is blessing me in Fairbanks, Alaska, a semi-arctic place so different from what I known in my over 46 years of life. No Casianos here for sure! In the mix of the cold (Physically and spiritually), in the mix of starting all over again, not knowing anybody, already facing religious opposition to my ministry, in the mix of foolishness, pressures at home, feeling alone at times and in the mix of missing my love ones, He still blesses me in the land of my affliction. That’s how I know that He is blessing you, because I am the chief of all sinners, a great failure and a nothing, that He is making into whatever He wants me to be as I surrender. For He is the owner of the glory of whatever is in me that is worth anything. Beloved, look around, what do you see now?