Pastor Jerry Sellers, OpenDoor Church, Burleson, TX
Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2022
James 1:2-4 (NKJV)
My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. 4 But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
James 1:2-4 (TPT)
“My fellow believers, when it seems as though you are facing nothing but difficulties, see it as an invaluable opportunity to experience the greatest joy that you can! For you know that when your faith is tested it stirs up in you the power of endurance. And then as your endurance grows even stronger, it will release perfection into every part of your being until there is nothing missing and nothing lacking.”
Let’s put some modern day language to falling into trials and testings: difficult circumstances, situations, life experiences, problems, bad things, suffering, illness, an attack from the enemy.
Let me deposit a thought for you by asking a question…
Could it be the whole point of having to walk through trials, navigating spiritual mine fields, experiencing difficult situations, and for us to endure testing is for us to receive something?
And not to take anything away from you or from them to cost us something?
Testing is the proving ground–the practice ground for advancement. It is to advance you. It is to add something to you. What if it’s to add another layer to a deeper functioning Faith
I heard this said a couple of months ago:
YOUR FAITH IS AS ONLY STRONG AS THE LAST TEST YOU WENT THROUGH
Could it be there is an upgrade the Father is attaching to the trial? Maybe to add a Promise to your arsenal.
Maybe that’s why James is saying you and I should be joyful. Count it all Joy.
God allows in His wisdom what He could easily prevent by His power
When a trial comes, realize we will grow through the trial because God is wanting to bring you to a new place to give you a fresh (Kingdom) perspective and a new anointing.
We have to learn to think and see, or perceive, the situation the same as Jesus does.
That’s what it means to have the Mind of Christ. Paul told the Philippians to “let this Mind be in you which was also in Christ.” You can’t just snap your fingers and make it happen. You have to work on it.
The mind of Christ is the most profound, most dynamic, most amazing way of thinking. The mind of Christ literally opens us up to see what Heaven looks like.
Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth
Right thinking will always generate fresh faith. And Faith will expand itself until Hope is birthed.
Here’s the point
YOUR STARTING PLACE GUARANTEES YOUR OUTCOME
If you start from a bad place (bad perspective), your outcome will not be what you want it to be.
What is a Place?
Your own reasoning and your own conclusion.
Especially if you’re not hearing anything from Holy Spirit.
Whatever counsel you receive, make sure the Holy Spirit bears witness and it aligns itself with the word of God!
A place where you have no hope.
A bad place is where you haven’t been walking with God and you have traded a Kingdom Mindset with a Religious or natural mindset.
If you can, start from a place God has assigned to that issue, circumstance, trial or testing you’re in. When you find that starting place, stand in it. Embrace it and confess it to the Father. Then your outcome from that place is what the Lord wants for you. It’s what the Lord wants you to gain from enduring and experiencing as you walk through that trial.
In every situation, there is a starting place where you can connect with the Father;
You Realize and have permission to stand on the promise…..He said He would never leave you or forsake you…Right
So, in your situation, there is a place you can start where you walk in partnership with the Father and the journey leads to an upgrade.
In the natural, we can get hung up; we can fall into ruts or get stuck in the ditch of a situation where we can’t see anything. We get so focused on the negative on the problem, the trial, on what’s wrong or what others may be doing to us–on the pain, hurt and discomfort–that it consumes us. Therefore, we can’t see anything else. We can’t even see there is a starting place.
We have to believe every situation carries an upgrade with it. Your starting place guarantees the outcome. Say that with me…..
Now I want you to receive this next statement
Sometimes the right battle to fight is only about where you and I STAND
Holy Spirit, His role, is to teach us the starting place in each situation. That is the reason we have been challenged to grow up in all things in Christ. We are learning our point of connection in this situation is with Him.
Jesus, in His 33 years on the earth, was never stumped by anything. He was never blind-sided by a circumstance. He knew His starting point of connection was with the Father. He said, “I only do what my Father does and I only say what my is Father saying.”
After these things Jesus went over the Sea of Galilee, which is the Sea of Tiberias. Then a great multitude followed Him, because they saw His signs which He performed on those who were diseased. And Jesus went up on the mountain, and there He sat with His disciples. Now the Passover, a feast of the Jews, was near. Then Jesus lifted up His eyes, and seeing a great multitude coming toward Him, He said to Philip, “Where shall we buy bread, that these may eat?” But this He said to test him, for He Himself knew what He would do.
So in every situation you face, your point of connection is this: the Father saying something here and the Father is doing something here; I need to find that starting place and the Holy Spirit is going to show me because my starting place guarantees me the outcome in the circumstance that I am in. And that makes me joyful.
So the situation I am in has an element of excitement. If we steward the situation the way Jesus is trying to teach us to, then circumstances should lead to a place of celebration. It’s a Yahoo moment.
The Bible says, “Of Him are you in Christ”
1 Corinthians 1:30 (NKJV)
But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God and righteousness and sanctification and redemption.
Thats our starting place. I am in Christ so everything that comes to this situation comes to Jesus in me.
Here is a thought….All of Heaven is attracted to Jesus who lives in you
Why do you think the Father put us into Christ in the first place and put Christ in us?
All of Heaven and all of the Kingdom is attracted to the Jesus in each of us. I wonder what is being attracted to Christ in you right now?
All we experience….. All we encounter….All we have to Endure…. All the circumstances….All the trials…..All the tests…say with me All, it has to pass through the Fathers hands.
Let’s not forget we are sealed unto the day of redemption.
So if I look back to the trials, testings, every circumstance in my past–My divorce, my board of Elders, the staff that turned against me, the loss of my loved ones, my children’s struggles–all that I encounter, all that surprises me, comes to the Jesus in me.
Can I say that if you’re watching and you haven’t developed a relationship with Jesus, you haven’t asked Him into your life, that’s a pretty good reason to do so.
We need to break the cycle of worry, anxiety, doubt, fear and unbelief because a double-minded man is unstable in all his ways.
Everything comes to the Jesus in you. Everything comes to your new nature.
2 Corinthians 5:17 (NKJV)
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
It doesn’t matter what your struggles are, it’s pretty clear how the Father see’s you. He says you are a new creation. Old things are passed away (dead). All things have become new.
What does that mean?
It means there where 2 creations in Humanity:
Pre-Cross or Old Testament people could have the Holy Spirit come upon them and they would live and function in a visitation culture. In other words, He came upon people for a time or a season to perform certain task, then He left.
When you move into a Post-resurrection culture, how God interacted with people changed. We no longer have God coming upon people for a period of time then leaving. You now have God living inside them, resting in them. The New Testament is upgraded from a Visitation culture to an Habitation Culture.
The Holy Spirit lives in you. Say this with me….The Holy Spirit lives within me. I know you know that but how much of a reality is that to you? When it seems the whole world may be coming at you, do you really understand you have the one who overcame the World Living within you?
Jesus said “even the Kingdom shall be within you.” You carry the Kingdom everywhere you go. Do you really grasp that? What need or lack do you have, see, or are being confronted with? You have the resources and capability within you to respond to whatever it is.
God is not coming upon a person anymore. He is literally rising up within and taking up residence.
That’s what New Creation means. We have been given the opportunity to live during this Habitation Culture.
Do you understand what we are to be doing? We are to be maintaining the Habit. It’s called abiding in John 15. We are learning how to Stay, how to Dwell, how to Remain in who Jesus is for us.
We are learning whatever situation we may face or be in, God is already in that situation with us because we carry Him in the inner man of our Spirit.
We are learning that God is not touching us from the outside. He is actually rising up from within.
Here is some good news:
Our Old Nature is dead and we are learning how to be Alive to God in Christ. We are learning how to live in this New Nature. We are becoming aware of the potential and the possibilities because, with Him, all things are possible.
Consider yourself dead to Sin and alive to God. The enemy would like you to believe you’re still alive to sin and having issues in your standing with God.
He is a liar. He is a deceiver, a con and a thief.
How much time has he stolen from you? How much truth has he muddied up to where you have not been able to walk in your purpose? How much of your life have you spent in shame, regret and condemnation? How much time have you spent there even after your salvation and even after you have heard the truth? What truth right now is the enemy stealing form you?
What lies is he depositing in you or encouraging you to believe?
What are you having a hard time believing?
The Father says “consider yourself dead to all those things that would disqualify you and be alive to Him cause He is the great qualifier.”
So, this really brings light to focusing on who we really are. Our real identity in Jesus. That means we seek His perspective and abilities in every situation.
I want to know what Jesus is thinking, what He is saying, what He is praying because I want to be doing the same things.
I want to see this issue the same way Jesus sees it. And I am learning to wait until I can get that revelation.
We need to get skilled at knowing our starting point in whatever our situation is because we want our outcome guaranteed from that place. We don’t want our outcome to be “whatever happens.” We want to tap into the upgrade in the situation. We want to “count it all joy.”
Colossians 1:27 (NKJV)
To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
What is the Hope of Glory? It’s the confident expectation of something glorious occurring in this situation.
We don’t want to live in Christ and still fall short of the Glory of God. Every one of your situations has the potential to carry some Glory in it.
Jesus is glorious. If He is in you, then you have the potential to be glorious also.