I’ve been asking the Lord what 2016 is going to look like. I believe the Lord is saying 2016 is a year to pursue and press through. When I heard press through I knew immediately where the Lord was leading me. Pursue, on the other hand, I had no idea. I asked Holy Spirit and looked up the word in the concordance.
1 Peter 3:11 NIV “They Must turn from evil and do good; they must seek peace and pursue it.”
The word peace is #1645 in Strong’s Concordance and means harmony, tranquility, safety, welfare, and health.
They must turn from evil and do good. As we look not only at the direction our nation is going but the silence of the Church on almost every issue of our day it is time for us to turn from evil. Not to speak is to speak. The Church must stand up and say men and women are created in the image of God and the enemy of our soul who is defeated wants to distort that image through homosexuality and transgenderism. A 54 year old husband and father recently abandoned his family to go live as a six year old girl and an elderly couple has “adopted him”. This is immoral and it is time the Church speak the truth with boldness.
Part of pursuit is holiness. Scripture says, come out from among them and be ye separate says the Lord of Hosts. Touch not the unclean thing and I will receive you. In our quest to be relevant, we have forgotten holiness and that is the first step of pursuit.
Pursue is an interesting word but instead of giving a dictionary definition, I believe Proverbs three is a perfect picture of what it means to pursue. It’s long but I encourage you to take time and read:
Proverbs 3:1-35 AMP “My son, do not forget my teaching, But let your heart keep my commandments; 2 For length of days and years of life [worth living] And tranquility and prosperity [the wholeness of life’s blessings] they will add to you. 3 Do not let mercy and kindness and truth leave you [instead let these qualities define you]; Bind them [securely] around your neck, Write them on the tablet of your heart. 4 So find favor and high esteem In the sight of God and man. 5 Trust in and rely confidently on the LORD with all your heart And do not rely on your own insight or understanding. 6 In all your ways know and acknowledge and recognize Him, And He will make your paths straight and smooth [removing obstacles that block your way]. 7 Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the LORD [with reverent awe and obedience] and turn [entirely] away from evil. 8 It will be health to your body [your marrow, your nerves, your sinews, your muscles—all your inner parts] And refreshment (physical well-being) to your bones. 9 Honor the LORD with your wealth And with the first fruits of all your crops (income); 10 Then your barns will be abundantly filled And your vats will overflow with new wine. 11 My son, do not reject or take lightly the discipline of the LORD [learn from your mistakes and the testing that comes from His correction through discipline]; Nor despise His rebuke, 12 For those whom the LORD loves He corrects, Even as a father corrects the son in whom he delights. 13 Happy [blessed, considered fortunate, to be admired] is the man who finds [skillful and godly] wisdom, And the man who gains understanding and insight [learning from God’s word and life’s experiences], 14 For wisdom’s profit is better than the profit of silver, And her gain is better than fine gold. 15 She is more precious than rubies; nothing you can wish for compares with her [in value]. 16 Long life is in her right hand; In her left hand are riches and honor. 17 Her ways are highways of pleasantness and favor, And all her paths are peace. 18 She is a tree of life to those who take hold of her, And happy [blessed, considered fortunate, to be admired] is everyone who holds her tightly. 19 The LORD by His wisdom has founded the earth; By His understanding He has established the heavens. 20 By His knowledge the deeps were broken up And the clouds drip with dew. 21 My son, let them not escape from your sight, But keep sound wisdom and discretion, 22 And they will be life to your soul (your inner self) And a gracious adornment to your neck (your outer self). 23 Then you will walk on your way [of life] securely And your foot will not stumble. 24 When you lie down, you will not be afraid; When you lie down, your sleep will be sweet. 25 Do not be afraid of sudden fear Nor of the storm of the wicked when it comes [since you will be blameless]; 26 For the LORD will be your confidence, firm and strong, And will keep your foot from being caught [in a trap].27 Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due [its rightful recipients],When it is in your power to do it.28 Do not say to your neighbor, “Go, and come back, And tomorrow I will give it,” When you have it with you. 29 Do not devise evil against your neighbor, Who lives securely beside you.30 Do not quarrel with a man without cause, If he has done you no harm.31 Do not envy a man of violence And do not choose any of his ways.32 For the devious are repulsive to the LORD; But His private counsel is with the upright [those with spiritual integrity and moral courage].33 The curse of the LORD is on the house of the wicked, But He blesses the home of the just and righteous.34 Though He scoffs at the scoffers and scorns the scorners, Yet He gives His grace [His undeserved favor] to the humble [those who give up self-importance]. 35 The wise will inherit honor and glory, But dishonor and shame is conferred on fools.”
We are all willing to pursue, the trouble comes during attack or we get discouraged when we have prayed but haven’t seen the result we want. Unfortunately, many of us give up on things before we ever receive. We stop our pursuit and don’t press through to receive breakthrough.
Mark 5:24-34 NIV “A large crowd followed and pressed around him. 25 And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. 26 She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse. 27 When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, 28 because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” 29 Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering.30 At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”31 “You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’ ”32 But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. 33 Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. 34 He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”
This woman not only pursued, she pushed through at the point most of us would have turn around and gone back home.
first, let’s notice she had spent all her money on doctors. now I’m not against doctors, but her last resort was Jesus and when she got to Jesus she was made whole. Now just think how much money she could have saved if she could have cultivated faith sooner.
Too many times we are quicker to put our faith in the things of the natural than the supernatural. She heard about Jesus, the King James says she came up behind him in the press behind and touched his cloak. The cloak here is actually the Talit, the Jewish prayer shawl and she touched the corner with the tassel. Malachi 4:2 says there is healing in His wings. The corners are called wings, this woman literally, as Jewish custom is, grabbed onto the Word of God.
We’ve got to come to the place where we grab a hold of the Word of God and no matter what the circumstance, no matter what negative words come, we don’t let go.
Hebrews 11:1 in the Amplified says, “NOW FAITH”, too many of us have tomorrow faith, or later faith, or maybe faith. We need to have NOW FAITH. “NOW FAITH is the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed) of the things we hope for, being the proof of things we do not see and the conviction of their reality [faith perceiving as real fact what is not yet revealed to the senses]. According to this verse, most of us would probably say our faith is not on the level we want it.
There are levels of faith talked about in the Word. Great faith, little faith, weak faith, no faith. When the disciples couldn’t cast out a devil, Jesus did then said to his disciples, you faithless bunch, how long is it gonna take. I’m paraphrasing. When the storm hit, they woke Jesus up. Two things; one, Jesus is sleeping they should have known there was nothing to worry about. Two, they had power to rebuke it and they didn’t which is why Jesus questioned them concerning why they didn’t use their faith.
The woman with the issue of blood heard about Jesus and said to herself, if I can touch Him I’ll be healed.
In 2016 I want our faith to rise, I want our expectation to rise. 2016 is a time to pursue God like we never have before and push through to breakthrough. No more allowing fear to overtake us, perfect love cast out fear.
It’s time to grab hold of the Word of faith and not let go. No more setbacks only set ups.
Make this declaration of faith right now:
In 2016 I will pursue God, the presence of God and the power of God like never before. I expect breakthroughs! I expect to see people saved. I expect to see people filled with the Holy Ghost! I will be filled anew with Holy Spirit. I expect to see people healed and delivered. I will receive every breakthrough I’ve been believing for and I declare today that I will not be deterred, I will not be fearful. Fear, Go! Doubt, Go. I decree breakthrough in 2016 and what I decree will be established to me in Jesus name!
We have declared it! IT IS DONE! Now, let us pursue and push through in 2016!
We will see great things!