Have you ever been in a situation where you are standing on God’s word and it feels like it isn’t working? When it feels like God isn’t coming through? I’ve been there and I’m sure you have too. We all love when we see a promise in the word and believe it, declare it, and see immediate change, but many times there is a process to our “and suddenly.”
If you are currently standing on one of God’s promises and it doesn’t look like it’s coming to pass or it looks like things are getting worse, I’d like to introduce you to Joseph. God gave Joseph a promise of greatness. Joseph dreamed that his father, mother, and brothers would bow before him because God would promote him into a place of authority. Shortly after Joseph declared his dream, however, he was sold into slavery and eventually ended up in prison.
If anyone ever had circumstances contradict the promise of God’s word he was believing, it was Joseph! Look at what Psalm 105:19 says about him:
19 Until the time that his word came to pass, The word of the Lord tested him.
The word of the Lord tested Joseph until the day of its manifestation. The Bible compares God’s word to a seed and describes the process of how seeds grow through the principle of seed, time, and harvest.
When God speaks a word to us, that is seed. This seed is how God begins a process in our lives to bring forth fruit. It’s important to realize when a seed is planted it looks like nothing is happening. The same is true with the seed of God’s word. It’s seed, not harvest!
Almost every Christian I have ever met has confused seed, time, and harvest in their lives. The truth is we all want the harvest so badly, we don’t realize there is a process to bearing the fruit God has for us.
The process of preparation we go through is time. It isn’t wasted time. It’s a time where God prepares us for the promise. It is also a time where God coordinates the events in our lives to bring the promise to pass. It can be painful, but it is a necessary part of the process.
For example, in order for a tree to grow 100 feet tall, it will often have to establish a significant root system underground to support the growth above soil. While the roots are establishing under the soil, it can appear that nothing is happening above ground. This is because our eyes can’t see the full picture. They can only see above the surface of the ground.
This principle is true spiritually too. We can’t see the behind the scenes stuff God is doing in our lives or the process to set up the promise. We only see when the promise comes to pass. Many of the “and suddenlies” in the Bible had a significant time of process where God was preparing people and orchestrating events.
The day the promise is fulfilled is called harvest. Look at what Psalms 105 says about the day of harvest in Joseph’s life:
20 The king sent and released him, the ruler of the people let him go free. 21 He made him lord of his house, and ruler of all his possessions, 22 to bind his princes at his pleasure, and teach his elders wisdom.
Joseph went from an inmate in prison to the second most powerful person in Egypt in a matter of hours. It was a 13 year AND SUDDENLY!
It still took another 9 years passed before Joseph’s father and brother’s bowed before him. That day came to pass too because God’s word accomplishes what it promises. Prior to the miraculous series of events that brought his father and brothers to Egypt, it probably looked impossible to Joseph that he would ever see his family again. Then AND SUDDENLY happened; 22 years after the original promise!
The key for Joseph to walk in the promise was passing the test of believing the word in spite of his circumstances. This is why Psalm 105:19 says the word of the Lord tested Joseph. We all have to pass the test where we walk by faith and not by sight to experience the fulness God’s blessing in our lives.
I want to encourage you that you can do it! The minute you got saved, you believed in an invisible reality. You have already passed one test of believing something that contradicted what your circumstances told you. You were and are saved. The rest of the Christian life is renewing our mind to the fact that God wants to continually do things that contradict what our senses tell us.
Once the Holy Spirit moved inside of you, he gave you an appetite for the impossible! God wants to do the impossible through you so trust His word and His promises over your life will come to pass. To learn more, check out this message I taught at Grace Life Church.