Luke 5:4-6 “When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.” Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.” When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break.”
Have you ever had one of those mornings where you are irritable, but not sure why? Yeah, that was how I was this morning. No reason for it, just agitated. I brought this to the Lord and was literally crying before the Lord, asking Him what was wrong with me. His answer caught me off guard, but it brought life to me and on my feet I went down to my Bible to study out what He said. The Lord instructed me to look up all the barren women in the Bible, I found there were 7 stated barren women in the bible. Sarah, Rebekah, Rachel, Manoah’s wife, Hannah, Michal, and Elizabeth. 6 out of the 7 of these women were barren because the Lord had shut their womb, but one was barren because she cursed herself (Michal, David’s wife) and she never bore children. As I looked into the lives of these 6 women, the Lord began to speak to me about what happens when the barren one gives birth.
- Sarah gave birth to Isaac and she was called the mother of nations, of whom kings would come from her. Isaac is in the lineage of Jesus and is one the three stated as the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
- Rebekah gave birth to Jacob, who was later named Israel, who is of the lineage of Jesus and is one of the three stated as the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
- Rachel gave birth to Joseph, who was the one that saved his family, the nation of Israel, and the world from a famine, because of his administrative skills.
- Manoah’s wife gave birth to Samson, who became the one who would deliver the Israelites from the Philistines.
- Hannah gave birth to Samuel, who was a prophet of whom none of his words fell to the ground, he anointed Saul and David as kings of Israel.
- Elizabeth gave birth to John the baptizer, who was the forerunner for Jesus the Christ.
People that have never been barren do not know the pain of barrenness, but those of us who have been barren know the pain, the provoking, and the pressure that comes with being barren. But one thing is for sure, ministry barrenness, no matter what you do, you cannot make yourself bear fruit, if God does not open your womb, your condition will not change. This is not a reason to blame God, or yourself, rather it is the mystery that we must wrestle out in prayer, until we hear from God on the issue.
Today I heard God speak and He said, “The barren are about to give birth!” The wait is over, the kingdom of God is at hand, the manifestation of the waiting is about to be revealed. For others they can go and do whatever they feel God telling them to do, but for us, we have been held back by God Himself for such a time as this. What we are about to give birth to is going to change the world forever. It is going to bring glory to God in an unprecedented way, because we could not have done this on our own, our barrenness proves that. Those that provoked you will praise Him, those who pressured you will see the reward of patience, those who were with you in the pain, will rejoice with you.
“Sing, O barren woman, you who never bore a child; burst into song, shout for joy, you who were never in labor; because more are the children of the desolate woman than of her who has a husband,” says the LORD. “Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes. For you will spread out to the right and to the left; your descendants will dispossess nations and settle in their desolate cities. “Do not be afraid; you will not suffer shame. Do not fear disgrace; you will not be humiliated. You will forget the shame of your youth and remember no more the reproach of your widowhood. For your Maker is your husband– the LORD Almighty is his name– the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer; he is called the God of all the earth.” Isaiah 54:1-5
I was riding the stationary bike at the gym today rocking out to my Catherine Mullins music and the Lord said to me, I am looking for those who have built a dream house. As I inquired of the Lord as to what exactly He meant, He said that He cannot pour out His glory on people who do not have a dream house, built to hold the glory (honor, wealth).
For some people this house has been in the attic of their lives, because they never thought they would be able to do it. Others have been bruised by disappointment for so many years that they struggle to talk about their dream house. Some don’t believe or should I say have been taught that their dream is not important, so they are trying to help someone else fulfill their dream, but don’t know how to dream. And still others have been building their dream house for days, weeks, months or even years, knowing ONE DAY this dream will become a reality.
No matter where you are in the process, it is time to build a dream house. Now this dream house has to be about others, not about you. Barbie’s dream house is all about Barbie, excess clothes, shoes, stuff that she just likes to have around so people ooohhh and ahhhh at her. But the dream house God has called you to build is for others through you. I have a friend that her dream house is to create safe houses for abused women; I have another friend who just got a dream house from God about 2 weeks ago to start a rehab center and dormitory for those who want out of their addictions; finally on Tuesday, a friend came over to talk to me and she shared about a brand new dream house God gave her for a teen center.
God is putting dreams in the hearts of people right now. Write down your dream house idea for He is about to pour out glory, but if you don’t have a plan that is bigger than you getting a nicer car or bigger house for yourself, He is not going to give you His glory. Not because He does not want to bless you, He does, but He always blesses those who are going to be a blessing. We are the seed of Abraham, so we have to do what Abraham did.
Romans 4:3 “What does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.”
Build God’s dream house and watch Him pour out His glory on that house. And if you want to write it down and send it to me, I will pray for it to become a reality for you and my faith will partner with your faith for this dream house.
Luke 16:18 “Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery, and the man who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.”
There is an epidemic that is prevalent in the world’s system, but has invaded the church and it is the issue of divorce. In America and rapidly spreading around the world, people are making it easier and easier to get divorced. We claim irreconcilable differences, we declare marital unfaithfulness and we even shout abuse, as some of the many reasons, why we have given ourselves permission to get divorced. Today’s culture has created a movement of divorce, not seeing the after effects that are in its wake. Children are left hurting, lost and confused; husbands and wives are living with incredible pain, anger and disillusionment; and society is eroding because our families are breaking down.
As Christians we are notorious for saying, well that was the Old Testament, so that does not apply to us, we are New Testament people, but this passage about divorce is not noted just once but many times in the New Testament. Jesus was very clear on His stance as it pertained to divorce, yet we are being swept up in a cultural revolution that has made divorce common place.
Culture is a powerful force in people’s lives, it affects the way we think, the way we process information and the way we read our bibles. Living in Malaysia for 9 years, I realized that their attitude about divorce is very different than it is in America. They do not broadcast divorce as something they want others to know about. It is a shameful thing to be divorced in Malaysia and other countries around the world. So, people stay married, because they made a covenant agreement before God and others to do it. No, it is not always romance and fun, it is not always easy, nor is it without pain. However, whoever told you being married was going to be easy.
Many people are choosing not to get married nowadays, because they are children of divorce and they do not want to go through what they saw their parents go through. And this is true in other countries as well. As American media of romance and glee fill the airwaves in other countries, young adults are wanting a love that is very hard to find. So, many are deciding to stay single rather than live unhappy all the days of their lives.
So with the negative effects of divorce as one of the many reasons why Jesus would command us not to get divorced, there are many other reasons why He was against divorce. One being, how marriage is a picture of Christ and the church. The Lord has made a covenant with us as His church to never leave us or forsake us and marriage is the earthly picture of the biblical understanding of covenant, commitment and perseverance. The Lord will never leave us or forsake us and we are to have the same attitude toward each other.
Divorce was and is to be a shameful thing, not to shame the people who are getting divorced, but to detour others from doing the same thing. When divorce is acceptable, many people do it because they see no consequences from society for their actions. But as the church, divorce is to be a shameful thing, so we make it our last resort, not one of many options. As the church we should have the healthiest, happiest, most loving relationships the world has ever seen. As husbands we are called to lay down our lives for our wives; as wives we are called to submit to our husbands, if we as men and women would be who God has commanded us to be as husbands and wives, we would show the world why Christianity the only way, the only truth and the only life. When we look just like the world, there is really nothing for them to look up to.
If you have been divorced or come from a divorced family, I know this is a painful topic. However, it is not about where you have been, but about where you are going and I want to see marriages going in the direction of biblical standards and mandates. It is time we as the church grow up and obey the word of God. Divorce is not something Jesus would endorse, and I do not think we should either. We throw this word around very flippantly, when we are mad, hurt, or tired. It is time for the church to take back what a biblical marriage is, one that does what it says it will do. Through sickness and health, riches and poverty, good times and bad times. We need a little less talk and lot more action. Come on church, God’s grace empowers us to succeed in this area. Let us arise and shine, so God gets the glory.