Holding the Ladder


 

It seems as if we, as God’s people are in one of two places in life:

1. In the test of commitment – are we going to remain faithful to the Lord and to the Word when we don’t see abundance coming our way?

2. In the test of character – after we have entered into times of abundance, are we going to serve our blessings and use them for our comfort or are we going to live as if we possessed nothing and use our favor to lift others?

My first pastor used to say this: “The test of commitment is a tough one but the test of character is much more difficult than the test of commitment!”

All of us want to experience abundance, but we must be prepared for its appearance. Let’s do a quick study that will help us get ready to walk in successful favor and abundance.

Read 1 Samuel, chapter 9 as your study for today.

Here’s a few things to note:

As children of God, we have received divine favor from the Lord.

 A good man obtains favor from the LORD, but a man of evil devices he condemns. Proverbs 12:2

For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime… Psalm 30:5

What is favor?

Favor – good will, acceptance, pleasure; An attitude of kindness or friendliness; benevolence. Cheerful acquiescence or willingness. 

God’s attitude and actions toward us are motivated by a willingness to show us kindness through beneficial interactions. How does it make you feel to know that God is willingly working in your life to bring benefits to you through a kindly nature?

Many people, when speaking of God’s favor speak in selfish terms. They want God’s favor in their lives but they forget that favor is a gift to be released to others for their benefit. God released the favor of His Son to us and we are expected to release the favor we have received from Him to others with the goal to release the glory of God!

We see the release of favor in the story of King David and Mephibosheth. David had made a covenant with Jonathon, Saul’s son. A covenant is a relationship that is mutually beneficial. After Jonathon’s death, David felt the responsibility to release the favor of the covenant between Jonathon and himself to Jonathon’s descendants.

David made a search for a recipient of covenantal favor.

Before we go further, I want to point something out:

We are a people of covenant; not just with God but with others in the body of Christ. Our communion celebrations bring back to our remembrance the favor we have received from God. But, we just don’t celebrate communion exclusively with God but with each other as well. We are a community of favor. It is our responsibility to release the favor we have received from God to one another since covenant between individuals is a mutually beneficial relationship.

David found a son of Jonathon’s alive whose name was Mephibosheth. Mephibosheth lived in Lo Debar.

Lo Debar: a place of lack; burned over, thirsty.

David sent for Mephiboseth with the intent being to release the favor of the covenant upon him.

David blessed Mephiboseth with the favor he had received from God in three primary ways:

 1. Create a pathway for growth

At one time, Mephibosheth had lived in the royal palace. Due to circumstances beyond his control, he lost his place of favor and became lame in an accident. David knew that the favor he possessed from God could create a pathway of growth for Mephibosheth. So, David called Mephibosheth “out” of Lo Debar, the place of “lack” and “dryness” into a place of blessing and growth.

This is the essence of a covenant relationship: to release the favor received from God upon our covenant brothers and sisters. David could have been afraid of releasing favor upon Mephibosheth because of fear of what Mephibosheth would do with the opportunities presented him.

Covenant people must cherish other’s growth and not fear it!

If they succeed beyond you in the kingdom, you have accomplished your purpose!

And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it. 1 Corinthians 12:26

2. Set them at your “table”

David said to Mephibosheth, “You shall eat bread at my table continually.” As part of His favor, God had spread a table for David in the presence of his enemies.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over. Psalm 23:5

David shared freely with Mephibosheth from his provision, his anointing and his cup. As believers, we too share with others from what God has blessed us with; not just materially but spiritually. Have you asked God to send someone to you so that you can increase them spiritually?

3. Release their authority

David gave the command to restore to Mephibosheth all that belonged to Saul, his grandfather. As king, Saul had great possessions. David saw God’s favor upon his life as an opportunity to release the authority of Mephibosheth!

Out of self interest, many are afraid to share authority, but David saw it as part of his covenantal responsibility to release the authority of those who were with him.

To keep the favor of God upon his life, David understood he must be responsible in giving of the favor he possessed. A fear of loss and a fear of others will keep us from being covenant people.

We must use our favor to lift others not hold them down! Banish fear from your life and trust God! Remember this promise:

Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full–pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap. The amount you give will determine the amount you get back.” Luke 6:38 NLT

 If you believe this scripture, get busy using what you have for others! You will reap back a life of meaning and purpose!

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