When we have disagreements with our partners, it can take a while for our hearts to reconcile, sometimes due to our egos.
October 16, 2023
When we have disagreements with our partners, it can take a while for our hearts to reconcile, sometimes due to our egos. However, what I deeply appreciate about Jesus is that, no matter how distracted we were, one moment is enough if we can just turn toward Him. His love and intimacy are instantaneous. Yes, instant. He is not like us, proud and waiting for us to apologize or make amends before sharing His love. He is ever forgiving, ever loving, compassionate.
If you’re feeling condemned for any reason, perhaps because you think you haven’t prayed or read the Word enough, or for any other reason, I want to assure you that Jesus is all you need, all you want. He does not condemn you; He is not the accuser. Yes, we have an accuser, and his name is Satan. Jesus is not in the business of accusing. Whoever believes in Him shall not be condemned. We were already condemned, but He has delivered us from condemnation. If you’re feeling any form of condemnation or accusation, no matter how spiritual it may seem or whatever package the devil is using to deceive you into thinking you haven’t done enough to deserve God’s love, let me tell you this — the very thing that you think disqualifies you is what qualifies you to receive God’s love.
If you ever feel as though life is throwing disqualifications at you, remember that those very obstacles can qualify you for God’s love. Embrace and experience God’s love; it’s your reality, your portion, and it’s not something you have to strive for. Simply rest and know that God’s heart is devoted to you. He doesn’t harbor evil thoughts or wicked plans; His intentions are good for His children. His plans are to bring prosperity and peace into your life. Believe that God’s heart is on your side; He’s not your adversary. Even when He corrects, it comes from a place of grace and compassion. His rebukes and discipline are rooted in love.
The Bible tells us that God disciplines those He loves, so if you feel His correction today, know that it’s His love toward you. Sometimes, we all need different forms of love; sometimes, it’s tender, and at other times, it’s tough love. Just as a child may need a firm hand to understand a father’s love, God’s heart remains for you. His discipline, even if it seems strict at the moment, is for your well-being. Believe in His loving intentions. Yes, it’s all about granting us life and preventing us from perishing or suffering.
Today, the Holy Spirit placed a message on my heart, one that has been tucked away in my archives for some time. I was waiting for the right moment to share it with you. Yesterday, during my prayers, the Holy Spirit made it clear: tomorrow is the day. So, I’m thrilled to bring this to you for the first time. It’s a message from Luke chapter eight.
In Luke 8, Jesus imparts a critical parable to His disciples: the parable of the sower. He tells them that this is the most important parable in the gospel. Among all the parables, this one is the key. It unlocks the understanding of every other parable. Jesus says, ‘I give you this parable; it’s the key to understanding all others.’ Here’s how it goes: a farmer scatters seeds on different types of soil – some on the roadside, some on rocky ground, some among thorns, and some on good soil. The results vary based on the soil’s condition. In some places, nothing grows despite the seed being sown. In others, it starts to grow but withers quickly. In some places, it grows better but gets choked by thorns.
But in the good soil, as Jesus explains, it yields a bountiful harvest, up to 30, 60, or even 100 times what was sown.
In this parable, the seed symbolizes God’s word. When we receive and embrace His word, it has the potential to grow within us and yield fruit in our lives. The seed remains the same, but the condition of the soil, or the heart, into which it falls determines the harvest we will reap. The heart is the ground where the word of God, which is the seed, takes root. Therefore, the condition of our hearts is crucial in determining whether we bear a thirtyfold, sixtyfold, hundredfold harvest, or no fruit at all.
You might wonder why, even though you attend the same church and hear the same sermon, your fruit differs from that of your neighbor. It’s a common occurrence. Many in the same audience, exposed to the same teachings and atmosphere, yield different outcomes. The variable that alters the fruit or harvest is our hearts. The condition of our hearts significantly impacts the results.
Before this year began, I experienced a prophetic sense of the Lord’s hand upon my life, unlike anything I’ve felt before. I perceived it as a season of sowing, followed by a season of stretching where God was preparing us for the upcoming harvest. I share this with you to ensure your hearts are prepared for the hundredfold harvest.
Throughout this year, all your efforts in believing in God, meditating, declaring, and confessing will come to fruition. Yes, by the end of this year, your situation will be unrecognizable compared to how it began. This transformation is brought about by the power of God’s word, not by our own abilities. The word of God can transform your life and alter your destiny.
Back in 2011, during a youth meeting, I received a revelation from the Lord that I was set apart for ministry. I initially thought my ministry would revolve around music because that was my comfort zone. I couldn’t have imagined that I would one day preach the word. Speaking to strangers or public speaking was a terrifying prospect for me. I lacked the confidence, and my knees would tremble when addressing a crowd. I recall an incident during college when I was asked to judge a music competition. The appreciation was overwhelming.
They honored me. After the competition concluded, and I’d assigned the marks, they asked me to say a few words, and I panicked. I’ve never frozen like that before. I took the microphone, looked at the audience, and my mouth refused to cooperate. No words emerged. However, in 2012, I experienced a powerful encounter with the Holy Spirit, and God’s Word ceased to be just doctrine; it became my reality. This transformation completely changed my life, instilling a boldness to preach God’s Word. For those unaware, I have a background in engineering, and some in the church might not know that I worked as a software engineer for a long time. That’s my background. I can tell you that even today, if I were asked to speak publicly about software, I would be quite ineffective. I lack confidence. However, ask me to preach God’s Word, and it’s a different story.
It’s essential to understand that it’s the power of God’s Word that bears fruit in our lives, not the ground itself. The seed that falls into the ground carries the potential for fruitfulness. So, all the seeds of God’s Word that you’ve sown this season are about to yield a harvest. This is the season of harvest, and it’s approaching rapidly. When it happens, don’t be taken aback; it will be transformative.
Now, let’s prepare for this harvest by preparing our hearts. Just like the ground needs preparation before and after the seed is sown, our hearts require preparation. We need to remove any weeds or obstacles that might hinder the growth of the seed. The condition of the heart determines the quantity of fruit we will reap. I want to discuss five keys to clear your heart of anything that obstructs your blessings. These keys are inspired by my favorite book in the Bible, Proverbs, specifically Proverbs chapter three.
Before we delve into Proverbs 3, let’s envision the 7 fruits you should eagerly anticipate and have faith in. These fruits can be transformative in your life.
Good, Satisfying, and Long life
This isn’t solely about living long but living with both high quality and quantity – a life that is both good and fulfilling.
It’s not just about experiencing calmness; it’s about restoration. It’s God’s shalom, which means nothing is missing and nothing is broken. This peace brings about restoration and wholeness.
The favor of God is often manifested in favor with people. Just consider Joseph, who was a slave but received divine favor that was evident to his master, Potiphar, resulting in special treatment. Expect unusual doors to open, bringing divine favor.
Why emphasize ‘good’? Not all success is beneficial; some worldly success comes with hidden terms and conditions. God grants good success, and you can trust that it’s truly good for you.
If you’re battling any lingering sickness, trust that you will be healed. Moreover, you will begin to live in divine health, where sickness has no place. Health is indeed better than healing.
You will receive clarity in your life. No more wandering or feeling lost; you’ll know your purpose and direction. Your age is not a limiting factor; God will provide clarity irrespective of your age.
Abundance that Overflows, not just for your benefit but also to bless others. You will have more than enough resources.
It’s essential to understand that the fruits the Word of God bears are more than just monetary gain. Many have wealth but are spiritually impoverished. These are the fruits you should pursue – not just wealth but a comprehensive transformation in your life. The Word of God’s impact goes far beyond financial wealth.
5 keys to maintain the fertility of your heart, ensuring that it remains receptive to God’s Word and bears fruit
Proverbs 3:1-2 – My son, do not forget my teaching, but let your heart keep my commandments, for the length of days and years of life and peace they will add to you.
Picture it as the Father speaking to you, addressing you as His child. “My son, my daughter, do not forget my teaching; let your heart hold my commandments.”
What’s the outcome of following this key? Well, Proverbs 3:2 reveals it: “For the length of days and years of life and peace, they will add to you.” In other words, just by consistently remembering and holding fast to what you’ve learned, you’ll attain a good, satisfying, long life and peace. It’s astonishing to realize that sometimes it only takes a mere 24 hours for someone to forget what was taught on a Sunday. On Monday morning, the message from the previous day might fade into obscurity. This responsibility falls on your shoulders – the responsibility to recall and stay faithful to what you’ve learned.
Why? Because the devil is always scheming to snatch that word away from you. He wants to steal it from your heart, even to the point of erasing it from your memory. The devil won’t remind you that you are God’s beloved. He seeks to rob you of any word from the Lord. Your role is to keep these teachings alive in your memory. As the Psalms say, “God spoke once, but I heard it twice.” It’s as if God speaks to you freshly every time you remember and meditate on His word. Your recollection breathes life into these words, making them perpetually fresh, like manna.
Proverbs 3:3-4 – Let not steadfast love and faithfulness forsake you; bind them around your neck; write them on the tablet of your heart. So you will find favor and good success in the sight of God and man.
This verse emphasizes keeping love and faithfulness close to you, inscribing them on your heart. If you do this, verse 4 promises, “So you will find favor and good success in the sight of God and man.” So, by not forgetting what you’ve learned and allowing your heart to soak in God’s love and faithfulness, you will encounter favor and good success both in God’s eyes and in the eyes of people.
What’s the key to remembering God’s word? It’s understanding that God’s heart is for you, that He loves you, and that you are in a loving relationship with Him. You see, when you know someone loves you and you’re in love with them, you remember every word they speak over you. It’s true, isn’t it? So the secret to recalling and abiding in God’s word is to be assured and to know that He loves you, that He is committed to you, and that His faithfulness is unwavering.
After 27 years of being single, I finally found the woman of my dreams. And you better believe that I remembered every word she spoke. Why? Because I knew she loved me, and I was in love with her. In the same way, knowing that God loves you and is committed to you is the secret to remaining faithful to His word.
The steadfast love and faithfulness of Jesus are what have consistently kept me grounded in my faith. The one truth that has anchored me time and time again is knowing that He loved me first. I never obsess over my faithfulness; I focus on His faithfulness, and the beauty of it is that when I think about His faithfulness and steadfast love, my faithfulness becomes automatic. It’s that good.
If you want to continue abiding in God’s teachings, in the words He’s given you, you need to be confident that you are loved. God didn’t hand you a memo like a boss giving instructions to an employee with an employee ID. Some of you may have received God’s word in that manner, which is why you forget it the next day. How many of you recall every detail of your boss’s instructions? You might remember them for five minutes, and then you need a reminder. But if you know that the one who loves you is the one instructing you, you will cherish those words and remember them.
Imagine this scenario: as a young child, if I were scolded by a teacher for unfair reasons and worried about facing that teacher again, I’d confide in my father. I’d share my concerns, and my father would reassure me not to worry. He’d say, “Go to school tomorrow; I’ll come with you and take care of it.” The next morning, as I walked to school, my father wouldn’t be physically present, but I wouldn’t be alone. I had to face the teacher without knowing how she would respond or react that day, but the assurance of my father’s words, that he’d take care of it, gave me confidence. Yes, he said he would take care of it, and that was enough. How he did it wasn’t my concern. If he said he’d do it, he would do it.
So, on Monday morning or Tuesday morning, when you wake up and go to the office, you may feel alone, but you’re not alone. You have His word. His word is the assurance that God will come through. Keep reminding yourself of what the Lord spoke to you. Whenever you face difficult circumstances, ask yourself, “What is the word God gave me for this season?” For example, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” Done. No questions asked. Believe it.
Put your faith in God, regardless of how the situation appears. Trust the Lord.
Proverbs 3:5-6 – Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.
The secret to a consistent life is to rely on the unwavering consistency of God. How do you achieve this? It’s as simple as trusting Him. Even when you find yourself in the valley, in the deepest financial low, or at the highest peak of your life where everything might seem hopeless, continue to trust God. Trust Him in every circumstance, in every decision, with your whole heart. Avoid leaning on your own understanding because our human understanding often leads us astray. It can convince us that we are right when, in reality, it may lead to unfavorable outcomes. Instead, put your trust in God. Trust Him, no matter what you face, no matter how you feel. If you can trust the Lord at all times, the word within you cannot wither. It remains a source of strength and consistency in your life.
Now, consider the nature of faith. Hebrews 11:6 tells us, “Without faith, it is impossible to please God, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that He exists.” But the question arises: Is faith merely about believing in the existence of God? James reminds us that even demons believe in the existence of God. So, what distinguishes our faith from the belief of demons?
The crucial difference is that we, as children of God, believe in a good Father. This is beyond the comprehension of demons. They cannot see God as a Father, and they certainly cannot perceive Him as good. However, you and I have the privilege of knowing God as a good Father.
Faith is not just about believing in God’s existence; it’s about believing in the goodness of your Father.
So, at the end of the day, once you’ve wrestled with doubts, arguments, and spiritual warfare in your mind, what truly matters is whether you believe that God is good. Amid all the struggles and mental wrestling, if the final conclusion is not that God is good, we’ve missed the point.
It’s okay to have that mental tussle, to engage in mental struggles. However, the fundamental question remains: Do you believe that God is good, even in the midst of challenges and trials? Can you maintain your belief in God’s goodness, even when you feel like you’re drowning in doubt and despair? Trust the Lord in all your circumstances, and this will keep your heart firmly anchored in God’s word.
The fear of the Lord involves not entertaining evil in any form. This means refraining from evil thoughts, intentions, motivations, and plans. When people hurt us, and we may be tempted to think or act maliciously in response, it is essential to resist this temptation and stay grounded in the fear of the Lord.
Proverbs 3:7-8 – Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord, and turn away from evil. It will be healing to your flesh and refreshment to your bones.
In those moments when we’re tempted to speak or act in a harmful way, choosing to withhold and not entertain evil can lead to healing and refreshment, even if it may not feel that way in the heat of the moment.
The fear of the Lord, as mentioned in Proverbs 3:7, is about not becoming our own gods and controllers of our lives but rather allowing God to be God. It’s a matter of trust. We trust that certain things are beyond our control, and we place our faith in God. We choose to respond to difficult situations with awe, worship, and trust in God, rather than taking matters into our own hands.
This perspective encourages us to let go, avoid planning revenge, and understand that vengeance belongs to the Lord. In essence, the fear of the Lord is about aligning ourselves with God’s principles and wisdom, refraining from evil, and entrusting our lives and circumstances to His care.
Proverbs 3:9-10 – Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the firstfruits of all your produce; then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will be bursting with wine.
The word I’d like to emphasize is ‘all,’ a three-letter word, but it holds immense significance. It instructs us to give the first fruits of all our produce, not just some of it.
The verse continues: ‘Then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will be bursting with wine.’ If you aspire to live a life of abundance, free from want, it is crucial to honor the Lord with your wealth. It’s worth noting that God doesn’t require our wealth; He is the King of Kings, infinitely abundant. However, something extraordinary happens when we choose to honor Him with our wealth.
You see, God cherishes our hearts above all, and our hearts are intertwined with our wallets. There’s an invisible connection that tugs at us. Have you ever experienced that pinch in your heart when you give an extra 200 rupees, especially during a bargaining session at a local market when you realize you could have saved a hundred rupees more? Our hearts are indeed connected to our wallets.
Let me share a personal experience. Recently, while in Vietnam, my wife Betty and I dined at a street food stall, and when the bill arrived, we were shocked. In Hindi, we’d say, ‘Hum loot gaye.’ It means we felt like we had been robbed. The experience stuck with me, reminding me how our hearts and wallets are closely linked.
When we give from our resources, we are essentially offering a part of our hearts. I didn’t always grasp this concept. I used to devote hours to worshiping the Lord. However, in 2018, a revelation struck me: ‘Honor the Lord with your wealth.’ That very night, during a meeting, I emptied everything I had because I felt the Lord’s calling. This act freed me from the shackles of financial fear and the burden of insufficiency. Even to this day, we experience open heavens. Regardless of our bank balance, I have unwavering faith that my God will supply all my needs according to His glorious riches. It’s not merely a verse; it’s a living reality. When you honor the Lord with your wealth, you will never know lack; you will always be in abundance.
Let me share a story. When we were constructing this church, a particularly tough season ensued. The people I had relied on for support were all facing challenges. I wondered why it was happening when we had been guided to build this place that exceeded our wildest expectations.
It was beyond our means but within God’s capacity. Anxieties were rising, and that’s when the word of the Lord came. He said, ‘I am a jealous God. Whoever you think is your source, I will remove them to demonstrate that I am your source.’ In just three weeks, this place was ready, miraculously completed. The message is clear: honor the Lord with your wealth, and you will overflow; you will not lack.
However, I want to stress that if you view giving as a formula, it will not yield the expected results. Simply calculating your giving will not work. It must come from the depths of your heart, a true act of honoring the Lord with your wealth. Wealth reflects the posture of your heart.
Proverbs 15:33 – The fear of the Lord is instruction in wisdom, and humility comes before honor.
If you give but lack the fear of the Lord and humility, you won’t receive honor, for humility precedes it. How can you ensure your giving stems from a humble heart and the right posture? That brings us to my next point, the fifth and one of the most challenging keys I can offer. Yet, if you can conquer this key, your heart, it will unlock breakthroughs for 90% of you.
How can you recognize humility when you’re honoring the Lord with your wealth? A key indicator is your ability to accept correction and discipline.
Proverbs 3:11-12 – My son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline or be weary of his reproof, for the Lord reproves him whom he loves, as a father the son in whom he delights.
To ‘despise’ means to take it lightly. So, do not dismiss the Lord’s discipline or grow weary of His reproof. ‘Weary’ means to get tired or frustrated with it. Don’t be fatigued when the Lord corrects you. ‘Reproof’ is similar to ‘rebuke.’
In my recent teachings on the ‘Keys of the Kingdom,’ I’ve emphasized the importance of these spiritual insights, which unlock God’s kingdom. We often lack the time to delve deeply into each revelation because there are so many to explore. However, one of these keys is to honor those who embody the reality you seek. By simply honoring them, you can align yourself with that reality. Many dimensions of success in my life have opened up because God has blessed me through people. Remember, God often blesses us through the people He places in our lives. It’s easier to honor God, but it can be challenging to honor people, especially when God uses them to bless us. Sometimes, we inadvertently resist the very hands that the Lord uses to provide for us. Recognizing that these individuals are God’s gifts to us and honoring their calling, purpose, and the divine grace upon their lives can lead to blessings flowing into our lives as well, with minimal effort, much like an escalator.
Honor is a potent force. To honor God, you must honor His word. When seeking a spiritual impartation, I believe in the laying on of hands and prayer. However, the essence of spiritual impartation often lies in the words spoken. If you receive prayer from a pastor but do not honor the words they speak, you may not fully receive the impartation because the words carry the spirit. To honor God, honor His word. To honor a person, honor their words.
For instance, if you see someone enjoying a harmonious family life or successful relationships and desire the same, you can tap into their grace by honoring their words. This is how you receive your spiritual impartation. I often have people come to me and request prayer. While I’m more than willing to pray for everyone, I’ve noticed a distinction in outcomes. When two people approach me for prayer, one may receive what they seek, while the other may not. The key difference is in how they honor the spoken word. One values the words spoken, while the other does not.
If you desire spiritual impartation, it’s straightforward: honor the words spoken to you. Embrace discipline, correction, and rebuke as part of your life, and nothing can hold you back. Our struggles often persist because we resist discipline and correction, getting hurt easily by the imperfections we encounter.
When we experience difficulties or misunderstandings in church or with our pastors, it’s crucial to understand the problem doesn’t lie with them or the church. It’s a matter of our own hearts. God uses imperfect individuals and circumstances to release His word and guide us toward a higher level of glory.
Let me share a personal experience. When I was young, I wasn’t very expressive. My mother, however, had an incredible ability to sense my concerns, even when I didn’t share them. She would ask if everything was okay, and I’d often deny any issues. But she knew what was bothering me and took steps to address it, bringing comfort to my heart.
As I became a teenager, I started thinking I knew better and wanted to prove my parents wrong. I believed they didn’t understand me or my changed personality. In my adulthood, I tried to show that they were mistaken. They might not have known all the details of my life, but because God had placed them in their roles as parents, they could sense what was in my heart. God positioned them to take care of me, so they knew without my telling them.
Consider this analogy in the context of the spiritual leaders and mentors in your life. Just as my parents knew what was in my heart, the people God has placed over your life understand your needs and concerns. They often provide guidance and support, not because of some extraordinary prophetic gift, but because God cares for your life and reveals it to those who are in a position to guide you.
I’ve observed a pattern over time. When I feel led by the Lord to offer guidance to someone, even when they haven’t shared their concerns with me, I often encounter resistance. They respond by justifying themselves, much like a teenager would, saying, ‘No, you don’t understand.
You don’t know the details of my life. How can you judge me?’ I see this pattern unfold repeatedly. So, I step back and allow them to go through the same struggles again.
However, the day they finally receive the correction, that’s when their breakthrough begins. It’s a day of promotion.
This very morning, I messaged someone who follows our online services. I told them that I sensed they weren’t truly honoring God during the service. They were multitasking, distracted, and taking work calls. I encouraged them to set this Sabbath apart for the Lord, to fully devote their attention to Jesus. How did I know? God revealed it to me. If this person accepts the correction, it will lead to a breakthrough.
So, whether it’s the spiritual leaders God has placed over your life or even your parents, whom you may not appreciate at times, remember that they’re here to help you break through. It takes humility to see beyond the packaging of their words and understand the point they’re making. They’re not against you; they’re for your breakthrough. So don’t resist the guidance and correction they offer. Instead, consider it as a pathway to promotion.
How do you honor men and women of God? It’s easier to give money as a gesture of honor, but the real challenge is honoring their words. If you can do that, it will bring you freedom.
Here’s a valuable mantra: ‘You don’t know what you don’t know.’ Share this with your neighbor. You truly don’t know everything, and that’s okay. The key to learning and discovering what you don’t know is by receiving guidance, correction, and discipline from those who know you well. You may not be aware of your blind spots, but they can see them.
The good news is that we’re not alone in this journey. We have a covering, and God has placed people over us who hold us accountable. It’s a privilege to have this support. I’m grateful that I’m not directly accountable to God, but to a man, and that man is accountable to God. This setup grants us grace and second chances. So, be thankful for the people God has placed in your life to watch over your souls.