Your Best Days
Are Ahead of You
There Is Hope In Your Future
By Pastor Michael Olawore
New Wine Church, London
Foundation Scripture: Exodus 14:15; Jeremiah 29;11; Jeremiah 31: 17
Sunday 17th March 2013
Today, I have come to declare the counsel of the Lord to you and that is: There is hope in your future. There is hope in your future of our man of God, and there is hope in the future of New Wine Church. In Jeremiah 29:11 we are told, 'For I know the thoughts that I think towards you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil; thoughts to give you a future and a hope'.
There is hope in your future. Our best days are not behind us; our best days are ahead of us. Regardless of the situation which you may be going through, I want you to understand that your best days are ahead of you, rather than behind you. In the context of the ‘Go Forward’ mandate that we have been given and the season that we are going through as a church, it is important to recognise that God’s word cannot fail, irrespective of the agenda of the enemy. The plan of the Lord will not fail; His Word holds true.
God is not taken by surprise. His Word produces results always and it is not subject to circumstances. He releases His word, despite the circumstances that we may be facing and it is because He knows the thoughts and pland that He has already made for us. Since God told us to 'Go Forward' we have witnessed all hell breaking loose. Notwithstanding this, we can be confident that God's word will bring to manifestation that which He has intended for us. In Isaiah 55: 10-11, we see God's word being likened to the rain that comes from the heavens and waters the earth, making it to bring forth and bud. God's Word always accomplishes and prospers in the definite purpose for which it was released. For this reason, we can confidently hold on to His promises in the certainty that there will be a manifestation of what has been spoken.
God specialises in declaring His counsel in the face of contrary situations; overriding the schemes of the enemy. Remember, in the account of the creation in Genesis 1 when in the face of chaos and darkenss, God declared 'Let there be light' and as a result, there was light and the darkness had to give way. The bible states in Romans 5:20 that 'where sin abounded, grace abounded even more'. This assures us that despite what the enemy may confront us with, God always has the final word. That is why we must be careful to avoid paying too much attention to what we see and speaking accordingly, thus falling into the trap of validating the devices of the enemy. In a season such as this, we must be vigilant and careful about what we are saying.
Going back to the account of Genesis 1, God saw the chaos and the darkness and yet with His words, called light into existence. He spoke, not what He saw, but what He wanted to see. God did not speak the problem, but spoke into manifestation what He wanted to see. Had He spoken the darkness and the chaos, the darkness would not doubt have intensified and multiplied but instead, He spoke what He wanted too see and it was this that manifested. In this season, you must recognise the importance of your words. Refuse to say what you are seeing and begin to confess what you want to see. Make sure that your words line up with the Word of God rather than the situation; the Word of God will prevail.
The scripture in Jeremiah 31:17 which assures us, 'There is hope in your future' was declared by the prophet Jeremiah at the time at which Israel had been taken into captivity by the Babylonians. This was a particularly challenging and bleak-looking situation; a time of confusion and difficulty and yet, in the face of this, God declared 'There is hope in your future'. It is similar to New Wine Church being told to 'Go Forward' but facing situations that made it difficult to see a way forward. In the same manner that God raised a prophet to declare His counsel to the Israelites, I have come to declare to you that there is hope in your future. It's not over for you. In Job 14:17, we are told 'For there is hope for a tree, if it is cut down, that it will sprout again and that its tender shoots will not cease though its roo may grow old in the earth and its stump may die in the ground, yet at the scent of water it will bud and bring forth brances like a plant.' If there is hope for a treem how much more you? Who told you that it's all over? Again, I bring the counsel of the Lord to you: There is hope in your future.
Jeremiah was not speaking in accordance with what he could see. He saw beyond the pain and the bleak disappointment of the situation. Instead he looked into the future and saw hope. In this context, the word 'hope' means not so much 'expectation' but something to hope for. Jeremiah saw that there was something to hope for in the future of the Israelite. Your future is not empty; your future is loaded and bright. We, as a church are in a similar position as the Israelites in exile. We have not reeached the end of the journey. Our futuure as individuals, as a corporate body and the future of our man of God is full of hope. For this reason, we look at today and acknowledge that although today is not great, we can, by faith, give God thanks that today is not all that we have. We have a future. In fact, we have a glorious future. There is hope for restoration in this house. We must never come to the place where we are not looking forward to the fulfilment of God's promises over our lives.
Our best days are not behind us; our successes and achievements of the past are nothing in comparison to what lies ahead of us. Although we are finite in our perception, God is infinite and has assured us in 1 Corinthians 2:9-10, 'Eye has not seen and ear has not heard, nor has it entered into the heart of man what God has prepared for those who love Him. But God has revealed them to us through His spirit.' Again, therefore I say, "Who told you that it's over?" God says in Ecclesiastes 7:8 that the end of a thing is better than the beginning. Just as the description of the wine miraculously created by Jesus at the wedding at Cana, the best has been kept for last.
With God therefore, there is no such thing as a hopeless situation. As long as you hold on to God and hold on to His word, you will make it to your destination. If you think about it, to call a situation hopeless minimises God's power and is an insult to God for which we must repent. God has repeatedly demonstrated His ability to turn hopless situations around; in fact, tha is His specialty. Remember the account of the prophet Ezekiel in the valley of dry bones in Ezekiel 37? When God asked him the question whether the bones which were exceedingly dry could live again, he had clearly written off the situation and all that he could answer was 'Lord, you know'. God however, instructed him to speak to the bones and the bones responded. Many times, our probelems stem from us having given up on God and thus allowing the enemy to have his way. The account of the valley of dry bones is compelling evidence that God can bring about restoration notwithstanding the most circumstances. We know therefore that our man of God will be back.
Nothing about your life is hopeless. Without hope, you cannot experience the breakthrough of God. If we try and work faith without hope, it will be fruitless as faith and hope are interlinked. Faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of that which has not yet been seen. Faith is the raw material of what is hoped for and once releeased, travels to what is hoped for. If there is no hope there can be no fulfilment of what God has promised as hope is the platform on which faith operates.
As long as we are living in these earthly bodies, there will be two possible options arising out of every situation and these are as follows: the natural reality or the heavenly reality. We do not ignore the natural realities but we deny it the right to overshadow what the Word of God says namely, the heavenly realites. In Romans 4: 17 we are told of Abraham of whom, God had said 'I have made you a father of many nations'. Notice that this is in the past tense. Abraham was advanced in age at this stage and even when he had no reason to hope considering how old he and his wife were, he continued to hope and not being weak in faith, he refused to stagger at the promises of God. He refused to let his hope fade, notwithstanding that in the natural, his body being good as dead and Sarah's womb being no better, there appeared to be nothing to hope for. Abraham refused to let go of what God had promised him and the rest is history.
What have you chosen to become your reality? I want to assure you that regardless of the situation that you may be facing, there is hope in your future. Wherever you are, this is not your destination. Your best days are ahead of you.
In Jeremiah 29:11 God says, 'For I know the plans that I have for you', you are not ordinary - God ha plans for you. In fact, if you notice here, God is not speaking of a singular plan, but multiple plans for you; this is how important you are to God. The Message translation says, 'I know what I am doing; I have it all planned out'. 'For I know' is, if you think about it, a strange way to begin a sentence. It is suggestive of a statement made in response to questions being asked. Remember, at this time, the Israelite nation had been taken into captivity and were in exile and therefore they must have been asking why God appeared to have abandoned them and allowed enemies to prevail. In this season, I am sure that you, like me, have asked the inevitable question , "why?", "Why are we going through this?" To that question, God has the reassuring answer, 'For I know the plans that I have for you.' Everything that we are going through is part of God's plan.
When you examine a singular piece of a jigsaw puzzle, it is often near impossible to make out the picture. Howeve, when you put all the pieces together, the picture makes perfect sense. When Joseph was sold into slavery by his brothers, it looked terrible but God's plans were working. Similarly when he was taken by the Ishmaelites to Egypt and then accused unfairly in Potiphar's house and sent to jail, it seemed that he was completely abandoned. In fact, at every stage of what he went through, it seemed far from good but in the end, the picture of God's purpose in positioning Joseph to save his entire family became clear. It was all part of the plan. Be assured therefore, God's plans are good plans, despite, how they may appear. Although does not tell you the process, He has a vested interest in your expected end. You will make it and arrive at God's destination fo your life.
Your best days are ahead of you!
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