Thursday, 4 January 2018

Prepare the way for the Lord

Prepare the way for the Lord

"A voice of one calling in the desert, 'Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him. Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill made low. The crooked roads shall become straight, the rough ways smooth. And all mankind will see God's salvation.'" Luke 3:4-6 NIV.

As the year 2018 starts this January, everybody is full of expectations. We all wish that good things happen in and around our lives and circumstances. This heart of expectation makes our eyes not to focus on what happened in the previous year, but to look ahead concentrating our attention on what lies ahead in the new year. Nobody wants bad things to happen. Everybody wants something good to happen. But also, this atmosphere of expectations equally makes us vulnerable to deceptions and lies. The temptations of many of God's servants increase as they are tempted to follow the trend in declaring "thus says the Lord" for the year. In the course, many will say both what God has told them and what He has not told them. It takes a lot of courage as a servant of God to stay faithful to Scriptures in the month of January of every year. Most people in our congregations have itching ears. They just want you to declare and prophesy good things to them, whether it is the mind of God for the hour or not is not their concern. They will not want you to pay any attention to their sins, instead they want to get what they want to get out of God  because they worship Him on their own terms. Indeed, the temptation can be very huge but every man has his choice to make.

What should be our attitude? Our attitude should be to look up to God to know what He wants to do in our lives, seeking Him and making efforts to live in ways that please Him. As we expect God to move in our lives, our responsibility should be like that of John the Baptist when he was sent as the forerunner of the Lord Jesus Christ. He prepared the way for the Lord. Through his preaching and activities, the hearts of the people were prepared to receive the Messiah. Expectations were very high. Many "were waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem". As it were, John "watered the ground" for the introduction of Jesus. The manifestation of the Son of God has a direct link to the ministry of John the Baptist.

As the beginning of the year comes with great expectations, I will urge you to make a personal commitment to prepare the way for the Lord as concerns what He wants to do in your life, family, ministry, career etc. What God wants to do in your life is more important than what any man or woman may "prophesy" into your life. Do not be deceived by those who will want you to give money in the name of entering into any covenant with God. We dealt with this issue some years ago here. If you have committed your life to the Lord Jesus Christ, you have been brought into covenant with God through His blood and that covenant speaks for you every day of your life till your work is done. That is why you can pray and relate to God. Kindly note that the God that led you from January to December 2017 is still the same God that will lead you in this new year 2018. If you have been walking with Him all this while, the plans He has for you in this new year is a continuation of what He has been working in your life all these years. A life of disobedience and sin can hinder what God may want to do in your life this year. If you are doing fasting and prayer, let it be part of your preparation for what He may want to do in your life and ministry and not as a bargaining chip.

Do not just flow with the "prophecies" and declarations. Seek God and ask Him, "Lord what do you want to do in my life this 2018? What do you want me to do concerning what you want to do in my life?" He will lead and help you. What God wants to do is what really matters. In conclusion, I charge you with the same words from the Prophet Isaiah to prepare the way for the Lord to move in your life. Make straight paths for Him. Free yourself from every sin that entangles you. Set your mind on Him as every valley shall be filled; every mountain and hill shall be made low; crooked roads shall be made straight and rough ways shall be made smooth and the glory of the Lord will be revealed and all mankind together will see it. Hallelujah! God bless you.