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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Tenfold Increase in Wisdom and Understanding

Dear beloved: I have been in a Daniel fast the past two weeks, praying for my family, country, and direction and provision for the ministry and open doors the Lord has given. The Lord has really impressed upon me a few verses from His word, the primary one being Psalm 11:3 "If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?" I have been preaching on this as well at the prison as I believe it is important for all of to take stock of where we are as Christians in relation to our walk with the Lord, as well as where we stand with other believers and nonbelievers. Suffice it to say this country is in grave danger in every way: economic collapse, moral decay, enemies within and without ready to take us out, and I could go on and on. It is easy to focus on our failures as individuals and as a nation and then fear begins to overwhelm and consume us, and as a result we do nothing. But the Lord asks a piercing question, " what can the righteous do?"

When I think about Daniel and his situation, it is obvious that he was in a very precarious situation himself, much more so in a way than we are. He was in captivity, not in a cell as such, but he and his people were captive to the Babylonians who had besieged Jerusalem and taken them all off as captives to a foreign land. Some of God's people didn't survive the siege and the trip and the subsequent captivity, so in a sense Daniel had much to be thankful for. But he knew the only hope for himself and his people was to continue to cry out to his God in any and all circumstances, which is what he did. That is the lesson for us also, that in any and every circumstance we must continue to cry out to God, He alone is the one ray of hope for us as individuals and as a nation. After Daniel and his friends fasted they proved to the king through their appearance to be fairer and fatter in flesh than all the other children which ate the king's meat. In addition to their countenance rising, Daniel 1:17 tells us, as for these four children, God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom: and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams. And again in verse 20, And in all matters of wisdom and understanding, the king inquired of them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and astrologers that were in all his realm. Isn't it great to know that there is a path to wisdom and understanding that is ten times better than the path the wicked of the world has chosen to lead them down the path of life? The world's way practiced in the time of Daniel is still the way today: astrology, psychic hot lines, secular counseling, many other occult practices, and education relying on intellect and man's wisdom. God's way is illustrated by Daniel and his friends in their obedience to the Lord in prayer and fasting, devotion to the Lord even in the face of extreme persecution, even to the extent of going into the fire and the lion's den in defense of their faith and obedience to the Lord.

If you are lacking direction, wisdom, and understanding for your life, I would highly suggest you enter into a Daniel fast, or any kind of a fast, such as water only, or whatever the Lord calls you to do. The new year of 2012 is just beginning, this is the time to prioritize, renew, and rededicate your life to following Jesus with passion and wisdom. If you have a ministry or a calling, its a great time to reevaluate and ask the Lord for increased wisdom and understanding, to go after that ten fold increase that Daniel received. If you have not moved into your calling, now is the time to get started, as the days are growing short and there is great urgency about sharing the gospel. 1 Thessalonians 5:6 Paul says, Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober. I will be posting more in the days ahead on the foundations of the Lord's kingdom, and where we can work to fortify them. May God bless you this day, in Christ, Jim

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