Understanding The Economy of Heaven – Part 2
Align yourself with God’s PLANS
Being human, and I’m told being a man, this was a hard lesson to learn. It’s one that I have to pray about daily. To be honest, I still slip up with this one from time to time. Thank God for His grace!
Since Adam and Eve fell and were removed from the economy of Heaven, mankind has tended toward individuality. As a consequence, people tend to walk through life in a matter that is actually backward from the economy of Heaven.
Bless my plans
What we tend to do is plan. This is especially true in business. If you are seeking investors or a commercial loan, you must have a business plan in our capitalist society.
When God led us to open the learning center, I fell back on strategies and tactics I’ve used most of my adult life. They worked every time! Guess what? They didn’t work so well with this business in this market.
I was perplexed! After all, I had been successful in the education field for decades. What I did next I believed to be biblical – I sought counsel. I thought about verses like these:
“Without counsel, plans go awry, but in the multitude of counselors they are established” (Prov. 15:22). NKJV
“Where there is no counsel, the people fall; but in the multitude of counselors there is safety” (Prov. 11:14). NKJV
“For by wise counsel you will wage your own war, and in a multitude of counselors there is safety” (Prov. 24:6). NKJV
I called a series of meetings. Internally, I met with my board of directors, chief financial officer, marketing director, and sales force. Externally, I met with bankers, network partners, investors, business navigators/counselors, local employers and strategic partner firms.
With many of these professionals, I had a series of meetings over a number of months. The result was a new business plan! The only problem was that it didn’t work much better than my original plan.
In the meantime, God was sitting back waiting to get my attention. When I discussed this business with Him, it was to ask Him to bless my plans.
Finally, one day, He got through as I was reading the book of Jeremiah. This was a familiar passage that I have read hundreds of times. In fact, I have it memorized. You may have memorized it as well:
“‘For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. I will be found by you,’ declares the Lord, ‘and I will restore your fortunes…’” ( Jer 29:11-14).
It was one of those “rhema” moments where God’s Word came alive. My Joseph Gate was opened once again! Suddenly, I realized that God has plans for me! I’ve been going about this all wrong. Instead of asking Him to reveal His plans for me, I was asking Him to bless my plans!
Don’t get me wrong, I still believe in the wisdom of a multitude of counselors. But, I needed counsel about how to implement God’s plan for my business – not my plan.
With God’s plan, hard work is still necessary. The rewards, however, are great. It seems some days as if Heaven itself is moving on our behalf. God’s kingdom is supernatural and supernatural things began to happen.
The atmosphere itself at the learning center changed. It is amazing to watch an angry person walk in the door and see the anger melt away. People come just to hang out. They started bringing their friends and our business began to grow again. Truly, His ways are higher than our ways (Isa. 55:9).
You may be at a place today where your dream is undefined. You know that God has called you to something bigger than you are experiencing today. I encourage you to approach your Joseph Gate and ask God for His plan for your life or business. I guarantee that it will not resemble yours at all and will be of a scale that will knock your socks off!
You may also be surprised to learn that there are God-given assignments available that have been abandoned by others or left unfulfilled upon their death. In the Bible, we see Elisha picking up Elijah’s mantle – his assignment if you will – and seeing twice the result that Elijah experienced.
One could argue that Benny Hinn has picked up Kathryn Kuhlman’s mantle (assignment). Other assignment transfers are generational. For example, Kenneth Hagin, Jr. picked up where his father left off, as did Joel Osteen.
Still, many unfulfilled assignments are lying there waiting to be picked up and God may just ask you to do so. God wants to meet us at our Joseph Gates and open our spiritual eyes to the unfulfilled commissions lying all around us – our spiritual inheritance if you will.
Into the marketplace
I believe that we are living in an exciting period of history. God is redirecting us toward the ministry model of the first century. He is moving ordinary people, like you and me, outside the church walls, into the marketplace.
The marketplace is where all the hurting people are; it is where Jesus ministered; it is where the apostles moved in their gifts. God is looking for men and women who are not afraid to take their Christianity to the marketplace.
God is not looking for preachers to do this. He wants ordinary folk who will live their lives honestly, as Christians, in the marketplace. This type of ministry is more about actions than words. He wants us to live kingdom principles in front of others – even our families.
This is one of the primary reasons that The Joseph Gate exists. People need to be taught how to live in the kingdom. Think about it, everywhere Jesus went, His message was the same, the kingdom of Heaven or the kingdom of God is upon you. There are simply too many references to list here.
When Jesus taught us to pray, His prayer included these words,
“Your kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” (Matt 6:10).
Living life with an open Joseph Gate requires this commitment. Literally, when we function in the marketplace, we are to bring Heaven to earth! Could life be more exciting than that? Would your business be transformed this way? The key is to discover God’s plan for your life and walk in it – at any cost. Don’t forget to expect the unexpected – after all, it is a supernatural kingdom!