THE BLESSING | …beyond material things

Do you recollect that day you purchased cake or cookies for a kid especially in a pious environment and they left you with an affectionate vocal note “God will bless your business so that you can buy me more snacks”? Or the day you did something for someone and they signed off with an appreciation “God bless you for me”?

Every day we get loads of declarations aimed at summoning supernatural assistance, we also get loads of wishes either as a result of people’s appreciation, as a result of our efforts to get them or as a result of someone’s certainties that such assistance is needed by you.

For example, while someone may pray that God bless you after you had done something for him or her, another person may do the same because you requested that they wish you well while another may do the same because they are constrained in their spirit to pray for you.

Do these things make sense? Do they work or contribute to any of our experiences? Do we suddenly become rich because a blessing was pronounced on us? Well, a lot of questions surrounding God’s blessings often arise as a result of ignorance or an idea that has been promoted for a long time.

Many people believe that the only evidence of God’s blessing in their lives is financial breakthroughs and possession of things. some of those who are in marriage feel blessed only when they can foot the bills and take pride in their kids. Those without children but with money feel they aren’t blessed enough, those without money but with children also feel they aren’t blessed but burdened.

In school, students only feel blessed when they can pay school fees and graduate with good results but the blessings of God is not usually about material things, they could be part of it but they aren’t all of it.

God’s blessings are beyond a higher pay, a promotion in the office and other things we hold as God’s blessings. I believe that God can prosper people materially but a larger chunk of God’s blessings are more evident in the things that we do not see than the things we see. Why limit God’s blessings to things that can be easily achieved with science or things that men can quickly give you? God is much more than an earthly father who will not give you a stone for bread.

KEYING INTO PEOPLE’S BLESSINGS AND WISHES

When people pray, bless or wish for us that we succeed in our endeavours, it doesn’t automatically make us succeed, it doesn’t automatically place us on the path of success. Nevertheless, there are ways that we can key into such blessings, prayers and wishes.

1. Believe

We must believe and accept these prayers, blessings and wishes. Some people brush off good wishes because they doubt that those things make sense but the truth is that even as merely saying “you are blessed” doesn’t make you blessed, it is a reminder that you can experience the blessings that you desire.

2. Act

You must work these things out! When your parents, elderly ones or pastor lay hands on you and begin to speak great words over you, it should act as a charge! If they had prayed that you succeed in your business, you don’t have to be passive about it, you must fix your hands on something so that the invocations can have a channel through which it will flow. The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof. Whatever you earn from this earth is a blessing from God but God has set principles on how you can tap these blessings!

In the early Church, we don’t find believers praying and organizing conferences for money and material things, we don’t find them teaching that prayer and laying of hands is all that is required for people to succeed and earn a living. Throughout the Bible, it has always been about “work! Find something to do! Don’t be lazy!”

“We command and urge such people by our Lord Jesus Christ to begin working quietly to earn their own living” 1 Thessalonian 3:10

So, as that little Child says “God bless your business”, as your parents say “you will go and succeed”, as your Pastor declares, “that business will be a success”, you should bear in mind that you’ve got to make it work while you keep trusting God who gives you strength, ideas and wisdom on how to make it work.

YOU ARE BLESSED

Just because you are girdled by hurdles doesn’t mean that you aren’t blessed. That woman with kids and no money doesn’t feel blessed even when Children are God’s blessings from God. That family with only female children and no male child doesn’t feel blessed, that family with lots of money but no children don’t feel blessed. How about that man with a job that pays only fifty thousand naira every month not feeling blessed? Yet, some people earn so much less and some people earns nothing!

We have often shaped our understanding of God’s blessings with our ignorance. A culture that despises female children believes they are only blessed when they have male children. A society that doesn’t value hard work and growth processes feels the only blessed people are people who met wealth accidentally; people whose wealth came in a flash and no one asks questions how it came about.

I believe that everyone has got something to be thankful for even at those times when there are few reasons to be thankful. Be sure of one thing,

“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” Romans 8:28

SPIRITUAL BLESSINGS

Every believer in Christ Jesus has been greatly blessed and in Ephesians 1:3 we see that we have been blessed with “all” spiritual blessings in Christ Jesus. There are so many types of blessings, there are blessings that come from people, there are blessings of God without repentance but there are specific blessings that can only be found in Christ Jesus.

The Spiritual blessings in Christ are not material, they have nothing to do with what science or men could do for us and they are also not the blessings of God that are accessible to all men including those who don’t believe in him. These blessings are strictly in Christ and the purpose of these blessings are for our relationship with God.

The meaning of the word “blessing” in the above text is that God has “spoken well of”, he has made good pronouncements concerning us. He has set us free and declared us delivered. If he said it, he has done it and all we have to do is to believe it and act on it. If we read further from the mentioned verse, we see some of these blessings mentioned. Here are some of these spiritual blessings

1. God loved and chose us

God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. This means that God has declared us holy and without fault, he doesn’t see fault in us! He has spoken well of us when it comes to the issues of righteousness.

2. God has adopted us as his own

God has adopted us by his own decision into his own family and has brought us to himself through Jesus Christ. In John 3:16 we see that God loved the entire world despite background or religious alliance and gave us Jesus. It was declared that anyone who believes and accept Jesus shall not perish but receive God’s life; that is, be born into God’s own very family! God has called us “family!”

3. God has purchased our freedom

God has purchased our freedom with the blood of his own Son and forgave our sins. Isn’t it amazing? What a blessing it is! This is more amazing than all the material things in this world combined. God spoke concerning us through Jesus saying “it is finished. The price has been paid! You are set free!”

4. God has revealed mysteries to us

God has revealed to us his mysterious will regarding Christ. The will in question is to fulfil his good plan! Paul wrote about this earlier in Ephesians 1:4 “Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes.” Peter also echoed this in his own writing 1 Peter 1:20 “God chose him as your ransom long before the world began, but now in these last days he has been revealed for your sake.” We have been blessed with insight into this mystery.

5. God has blessed us with an inheritance

God has blessed us with an inheritance through Christ Jesus. This inheritance is not money, children, higher paying job, promotion and so on. Paul says concerning this truth in 1 Corinthians 2:9 “That is what the Scriptures mean when they say, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.”

This inheritance is a result of our union with Christ and all that belongs to Christ has been given to us in what I call a shared glory. In Romans 8:17 we read “And since we are his children, we are his heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God’s glory. But if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering.” Paul writes again in 1 Corinthians 6:17 “But the person who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with him.”

6. God has given us the Holy Spirit as a guarantee

We were given the Holy Spirit who guarantees that we will receive the inheritance that God promised. This Spirit is also the assurance that God has purchased us by the blood of Jesus to be his people. The Holy Spirit is an instalment of the full thing God has promised to do and we will remain in his possession even before the day that we will be united with Christ in the body.

All over the Bible, the spiritual blessings that we have in Christ is scattered in verses and they are uncountable. As we grow in the knowledge of the truth, we continue to discover more and more of this.

I call you blessed!

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