Welcome to the Grove!
Lord, open our hearts and minds to receive what You have for us today! In Jesus’ name, amen.
In our last gathering we discussed God’s order illustrated in Mark 6 and the feeding of the 5000. (Check it out here)
Putting our lives in order requires us to be in a position of surrender. It also positions us for God’s favor.
The word favor is mentioned >100 times in the Bible; mostly where people are humbling themselves to ask, “O Lord, if I have found favor in Your sight…”
Turn to Malachi 1:6-9. Malachi is warning the people that their offerings are not suitable and they’re giving God junk, instead of their best. Sadly, Malachi is talking to the religious people and much like the church today, we have not honored God the way we should.
He counsels them: “Entreat the Lord for His favor so He will be gracious to us” (v.9).
Malachi is saying, “look, God sees what you’re doing but there’s a way out of your sin! All you need to do is ask God for His graciousness, kindness and generosity with the right heart.
I certainly don’t walk to walk around without God’s graciousness being extended to me! Do you?
Are we giving God our best? Are we honoring Him? Are we giving Him our leftover time, money, service or are we living our lives in obedience to HIM?
We need His favor y’all!
Who had God’s favor?
Let’s look at some examples so we can get a clearer picture of why we should ask for God’s favor. Abraham (Genesis 19:21) and Joseph (Genesis 39:21) were both blessed by God’s favor, especially in the tough times. The Israelites had so much favor the Egyptians brought them gold and silver! (Exodus 3:21).
Gideon pleaded for favor in Judges 6, Samuel had favor with God and man (1 Sam 2:26), Job and Daniel all had favor.
King Hezekiah though messed up. He missed out on God’s favor due to pride (2 Chronicles 32:25).
But look at Mary – she had so much favor she was chosen to be the mother of Christ! (Luke 1:30). Jesus, like Samuel, had favor with God and man (Luke 2:42)
Check our Acts 2:46-47 … they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added daily to the church those who were being saved.
Think about it!
What does favor bring?
Answered prayers (Gen. 19:21), fruit, multiplication and confirmation of His covenant (Lev. 26:9), protection (Psalm 5:12), life (Psalm 30:5), strength and the ability to stand strong (Psalm30:7) and possession of land (Psalm 44:3) aka our inheritance! What a basket of goodies!
How do we get favor?
Sign me up Lord!
God takes pleasure in our prosperity (Psalm35:27). HE wants us to succeed and live in the abundant life He has promised us.
Having His favor is like receiving the cloud of the latter rain (Proverbs 16:15) and dew on the grass (Proverbs 19:12). Both of these phrases are symbolic terms for blessing – the latter rain was necessary for the harvest and the dew on the grass represents the manna that comes from God every morning, His mercies truly are new every day!
Not having God’s favor can wall us in and limit our view. It can lead to bondage and backsliding.
What in our life is hindering God’s favor?
Let’s humble ourselves, ask for His favor because we need His grace!
PS – This article is a teaching / study time done at the Grove (our Bible gatherings at the farm) so the format is different than my usual blog. I would encourage you to look up the scriptures listed above and sit before the Lord in a spirit of surrender and allow Him to minister to you.
We would love to hear what He has done in your life!