1 Samuel 17:40 Then he took his staff in his hand; and he chose for himself five smooth stones from the brook, and put them in a shepherd’s bag, in a pouch which he had, and his sling was in his hand. And he drew near to the Philistine.

50 So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone, and struck the Philistine and killed him.

As we see in verse 50, it only took one stone to kill Goliath, but David didn’t know that going into the battle. He came prepared to go the distance which is why he picked up 4 additional stones prior to the battle.

We may not face physical battles like David, but we all face spiritual battles. The battle is in our minds. From the time we pray for something to the time we receive that thing, we’re in a battle. We have the Word of God promising us it will manifest on one side and Satan telling us all the reasons why it won’t on the other side.

Although we read about David’s battle and desire a short fight, we need to be prepared to go the distance. The answer to our prayers may take weeks, months, or even years, but that’s okay. David didn’t know how long it would take for him to win, but he knew he was going to win. We may not know how long it will take for our prayers to manifest, but we must have an assurance that they will if we don’t quit. So, settle in, hold on to your faith, and be prepared to go the distance.

BOOM!!!!! You just lost your job…

How will you respond? Would you panic or cry uncontrollably? Would you call your friends and family and tell them the bad news? Would you blame God?
Or, would you maintain the same attitude, mood, and confidence as you did when you had the job?

If we see God as our source, we’ll maintain the same disposition. However, if we subconsciously see the job as our source, we’ll freak out. It’s easy to confidently say God is my Provider when things are going well, but what we truly believe will come out when the pressure is on.

I’m not saying we won’t feel uncomfortable or uneasy, but we’re not moved by our feelings. We ought to be moved by the Word of God. God said He’ll supply all our needs (Phil. 4:19). God said He’ll take care of us (1 Peter 5:7). God said we can ask Him for whatever we desire, and He’ll give it to us (Mark 11:24).

By knowing and believing God’s Word, we shouldn’t go into a frenzy. Let’s shift our mindset and truly make God our source.

Psalm 23:1 (MSG) God, my shepherd! I don’t need a thing.
Psalm 23:1 (CSB) The LORD is my shepherd; I have what I need.
Psalm 23:1 (CEV) You, LORD, are my shepherd. I will never be in need.

Colossians 3:1 Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.

The political drama, financial uncertainty, our health, the possibility of war, the safety of our children, and the unknown in our future all have the potential to get and keep our attention. We’ll research it, think about it constantly, and discuss it with our friends and family.

Colossians 3 tells us to set our minds on things that are above and not on the earth.
What are things above?
Every promise from God through Christ.

On purpose, we must keep our minds set on God’s promises. By keeping our minds set on God’s promises, we don’t have to worry about our finances and what they’re doing in the government because we know He promised to supply our needs (Phil. 4:19). We don’t have to worry about our children because He promised to protect us (2 Thess. 3:3). Even with our identity, we don’t have to worry if we’re good enough because we can read where we’re wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14) and more than conquerors (Rom. 8:37).

Let’s keep our minds focused on God and His promises and not the chaos and uncertainty of the world.

Psalm 62:1 Truly my soul silently waits for God; From Him comes my salvation. 2 He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be greatly moved.

Satan’s whispers along with trials, tribulations, and the issues of life will attempt to move us away from God.

After being in a situation for a while, we may doubt and wonder if God heard our prayers. That doubt can turn into anxiousness and anxiousness can turn into unbelief. The next thing you know, we’re not waiting on God, we’re trying to make it happen ourselves.

When trials and tribulations come, let’s put and keep all our hope in God. Continue to believe, continue to confess His Word daily, and live in expectation of God manifesting His promise. If we’re willing to wait forever, we won’t be waiting for long. Let’s be unmoved.

Exodus 16:12 “I have heard the complaints of the children of Israel. Speak to them, saying, ‘At twilight you shall eat meat, and in the morning you shall be filled with bread. And you shall know that I am the Lord your God.’”

Think about this… the Lord delivered the Israelites out of Egypt healthy and wealthy (Psalm 105:37). When they went into the wilderness, they began to complain about food. Naturally, if we did something great for someone else and they still complained, most of us would be done with them. But that’s not God’s way. Despite their complaints, God still provided everything they needed.

We too may have some complaints against God. We may have wanted Him to do this or that and it didn’t happen the way we thought it was going to happen. We may have wanted Him to give us the job, but it didn’t manifest or heal our dying grandmother, but she passed anyway.

Despite our complaints, God still hears us and is willing to provide everything we need and more. That’s His unwavering promise to us based on His unmerited love for us. It’s awesome to know that we have a God Who is willing to look beyond our complaints against Him and still be our Provider.

Ephesians 6:12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

There are a lot of us who like to blame people. We’ll blame ex-boyfriends and girlfriends for why we have insecurities. We’ll blame our parents for what they did or did not do in our childhood. We’ll complain about how we’re treated by our supervisors. We just blame people.

Meanwhile, the one we really ought to blame is getting away with terrorism. That’s Satan. Satan influences the minds of people and uses them as vessels. He’ll influence them to be mean, cruel, unfair, or insensitive towards us. In Luke 10:19, Jesus gave us authority to command these demonic influences to leave a person.

If someone has done something to you in the past, forgive them and let it go. Realize they were demonically influenced to wreak havoc in your life. If you’re experiencing drama with someone currently, use your authority to rebuke the demonic influence within that person and expect to see a change within that person or a change within the setting.

Hebrews 3:13 but exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.

Saying, good morning, good job, I’m happy to hear that, or that’s wonderful are ways we can exhort or encourage one another. Other ways include, telling someone to stay strong or praying for them after hearing their tragic story. More spiritual ways include, telling people to keep their faith in God and not being rattled by the circumstances in front of them.

It’s simple things like this that keep people encouraged and motivated and further away from depression. Someone may say, “No one encourages me.” Well, if we sow a seed of encouragement, we can expect to reap a harvest of encouragement. And honestly, we should encourage just to be a nice person and to be that light in a dark world.

Start this year off right. Encourage your family, friends, coworkers, and strangers. Do your part to make this world a better place.

Deuteronomy 7:8 but because the Lord loves you, and because He would keep the oath which He swore to your fathers, the Lord has brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you from the house of bondage, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt.

God doesn’t want us in bondage to anything. He doesn’t want us in bondage to people, drugs, sex, depression, food, or shopping. He wants us completely free.

Through Jesus Christ, He’s made deliverance available to us (Rom. 6:22). If we ever feel bound to anything, we can call on the name of Jesus and, by faith, receive our deliverance. We may not be delivered instantaneously, but with consistency in obeying the instructions from God, we’ll eventually be free.

God may want us delivered from bondage, but it’s ultimately up to us. If we want to stay in bondage to something, that’s our choice. For those who want deliverance, call on the name of the Lord, receive your deliverance by faith, obey God’s instructions for deliverance, and declare your deliverance before it manifests. Be free!!!

1 Chronicles 14:9-10
Then the Philistines went and made a raid on the Valley of Rephaim. And David inquired of God, saying, “Shall I go up against the Philistines? Will You deliver them into my hand?” The Lord said to him, “Go up, for I will deliver them into your hand.”

1 Chronicles 14:13-6
Then the Philistines once again made a raid on the valley. Therefore David inquired again of God, and God said to him, “You shall not go up after them; circle around them, and come upon them in front of the mulberry trees. And it shall be, when you hear a sound of marching in the tops of the mulberry trees, then you shall go out to battle, for God has gone out before you to strike the camp of the Philistines.” So David did as God commanded him, and they drove back the army of the Philistines from Gibeon as far as Gezer.

On two different instances, the philistines raided the valley. The first time they raided the valley, David ask God what to do. God told him to go and fight. David did as he was instructed and they won the battle. Logic would tell David and most of us to do the same thing we did that got us the victory in the first battle. But, David didn’t listen to logic. He consulted God again to see if he should fight. God gave him a different set of instructions. Because David consulted and obeyed God’s new set of instructions, he won the battle.

Just because we’re doing the same thing doesn’t mean we don’t need to consult God. We may have gotten initial instructions from Him on the fastest route home from work. That doesn’t mean we don’t need to consult Him because it works. He may tell us to go a different way. That way may avoid a lot of traffic that day. Instead of cooking something the same way every time, consult Him. He may give us ingredients that will make that dish taste a lot better.

Regardless of how often we do something and no matter the success we have, it’s always beneficial to consult God in everything we do.

****If we forget or don’t consult God about a particular plan, don’t beat yourself up about it. There’s grace that steps in when we miss the mark.****

Psalm 84:11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless.

There are a few reasons why there’s a delay in our prayers being answered. Some of those reasons include, demonic setbacks or self-maturity. Another reason we experience delay is because the overall good in answering our request has not been fulfilled.

God desires to maximize our good. We can request something from God, but if it’s not an overall good thing, God may not give it to us now. It has to be good timing, good for our family, good for our future, and good for our health.

For instance, we may request a new car. How excited would we be if He answered our prayer, but the next week there’s a hailstorm we couldn’t avoid because we live in an apartment? Not very excited. That would be bad timing on God’s part. He’s going to make sure we’re not stressing about paying for hail damage. Or, we may request a spouse. It wouldn’t be the smartest move on God’s part to grant our request if He and we knew we have a temper problem we’re still working on. That’s a marital disaster waiting to happen.

If we remain in faith and experience a delay, just know our delay is working for our good.

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