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SOLD, 81.5 cm x 24.5 cm (32″ x 9.5″), Colored Pencil on Matboard, Prints Available
“Everything is possible for him who believes.” (Mark 9:23)
“For nothing is impossible with God.” (Luke 1:37)
“…for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.” (1 John 5:4-5)
Sometimes in our walk with God we get stuck in a rut. Perhaps it is a particular temptation that we are struggling to overcome or an area of habitual sin we are still fighting through to victory. It might be an old wound that still affects us or possibly a harmful thinking pattern, a remnant of our old life before Christ, that needs to be transformed through the Word of God (Romans 12:2).
Whatever our issue(s) might be, sometimes we pray over and over again, giving God the same old spiel from the camp of defeat. While the Word of God encourages us to always immediately go and confess our sins when we fail (Psalm 32:2-7), sometimes when we struggle with something for a long time we can begin to accept a pattern and mentality of defeat where self-pity, victimization and unbelief find a home within our soul. We may stop believing that we can overcome and live in the fullness of the victorious life Jesus purchased for us. We can eventually get accustomed to living with our issues and letting them choke out the life and power of God in us.
May it never be so!
I am reminded strongly of when the Israelites spied out the Promised Land. (You can read the story in Numbers 13-14). Although God had promised to give the Israelites the Promised Land, the ten spies aside from Joshua and Caleb did not truly believe it. They looked at the situation from an earthly perspective and lost faith. Sadly, they did not have a vision of God’s destiny and purpose for them, which was to inherit the Promised Land and to enjoy its fruit.
God also has a vision, purpose and destiny for us believers in Christ, and he has clearly expressed it in the Word of God:
“For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.” (Romans 8:29)
Our destiny as believers is to be conformed to the likeness of Christ. Jesus walked in holiness and righteousness and in victory over all temptation and sin (Hebrews 4:15, Matthew 4:1-11). How exciting that this is our destiny as believers! “…for everyone born of God overcomes the world” (1 John 5:4).
The ten unbelieving spies did not acknowledge nor have a vision of God’s vision for them. However, Joshua and Caleb did. They knew and understood that God desired, promised and destined the Israelites to inherit the Promised Land. Knowing and believing God’s destiny and promise for them (along with God’s perfectly faithful track record to perform miracles, deliver and provide for his people in every impossible situation they had encountered (Numbers 14:21-22)) activated their faith.
Had they lived in the Apostle Paul’s day, perhaps they would have exclaimed with him, “What, then, shall we say in response to this? [The revelation of God’s certain destiny for believers] If God is for us, who can be against us?…how will he not also…graciously give us all things?” (Romans 8:31-32)
In other words, if God has promised a set purpose and destiny for us, then what can possibly thwart that? If we are in agreement and believing submission to God and his purpose for us, then who or what could possibly defeat us? If God is for us, who can possibly be against us?
Joshua and Caleb knew this, and when the ten spies had spread a bad, unbelieving report, they countered it with:
“‘The land we passed through and explored is exceedingly good. If the LORD is pleased with us, he will lead us into that land, a land flowing with milk and honey, and will give it to us. Only do not rebel against the LORD. And do not be afraid of the people of the land, because we will swallow them up. Their protection is gone, but the LORD is with us. Do not be afraid of them.” (Numbers 14:7-9)
So what about our own lives?
Are there areas where we have let our unbelief rule and hold us back from entering the Promised Land?
When examining ourselves, we need to make sure we identify sin as sin. Sometimes when we have struggles or wounds we can fall into the trap of self-pity and view ourselves as victims. We then make excuses for our unbelief and try to tell God that if such and such hadn’t have happened, then we wouldn’t struggle with this or that problem. But by making excuses and failing to acknowledge our sin as sin, we are protecting the very barriers that God wants to bring down. Therefore, we need to fully acknowledge and confess our unbelief and repent of it immediately. We need to lay hold of the Word of God in our hearts, which produces faith (Romans 10:17).
Sometimes the hardest step to take is the first one, but when we do, all of the power of God is there to assist us in walking out his will, for God says, “‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty” (Zechariah 4:6).
All barriers to our destiny of being conformed to the likeness of Christ must fall and will fall, but like the walls of Jericho (Joshua 5:13-6:27), they come down by faith. “By faith the walls of Jericho fell, after the people had marched around them for seven days” (Hebrews 11:30).
The eagle in my drawing, which represents a Christian, is smashing through the breakable barriers that have been holding him back from soaring in freedom and the fullness of the victorious life Jesus has destined him to live in. These barriers are represented as black glass, which is shattering as he flies through them by faith. An eagle by nature is a creature designed to soar and to be free, not to be constricted in a cage and earthbound. Likewise, as Christians we have a new nature that is designed to overcome and be victorious.
The idea for this drawing came while I was very deep in intercessory prayer about breakthrough. All of a sudden this picture ‘smashed’ through into my mind to the point of even startling me. It was so vivid and powerful that I immediately felt I should do a drawing of it.
“All the nations surrounded me, but in the name of the LORD I cut them off. They surrounded me on every side, but in the name of the LORD I cut them off. They swarmed around me like bees, but they died out as quickly as burning thorns; in the name of the LORD I cut them off.
I was pushed back and about to fall, but the LORD helped me. The LORD is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation. Shouts of joy and victory resound in the tents of the righteous: ‘The LORD’s right hand has done mighty things! The LORD’s right hand is lifted high; the LORD’s right hand has done mighty things!’
I will not die but live and will proclaim what the LORD has done.” (Psalm 118:10-17)