Blog In Audio:
I had a great day yesterday speaking at Everyone’s Church in Mt. Vernon, Washington. God was in the house and I was able to speak in two services in regard to Christ as our Rock in the coming season of 2021. This new year is going to be a year of knowing the Rock of Christ in our lives. In knowing Him we will become like Him in our place of standing in this world. By the testimony of Christ in us and us in Him, we will stand as a place where God shines to our world. When Joshua was about to enter the Promised Land, he encountered a Man that was a testimony of the Lord. His encounter with that Man was essential to his continued journey into the Promised Land.
Joshua 5:13 And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted his eyes and looked, and behold, a Man stood opposite him with His sword drawn in His hand. And Joshua went to Him and said to Him, “Are You for us or for our adversaries?” 14 So He said, “No, but as Commander of the army of the LORD I have now come.” And Joshua fell on his face to the earth and worshiped, and said to Him, “What does my Lord say to His servant?” 15 Then the Commander of the LORD’S army said to Joshua, “Take your sandal off your foot, for the place where you stand is holy.” And Joshua did so.
The Lord is the Rock of Christ and this is a year to encounter Him in a fuller measure. Joshua wanted to know if the Lord was for the Israelites or for their adversaries, but the Lord’s response was that of being the Commander. We may be asking the same questions. Our encounter with the Lord is not an encounter to prove whether the Lord is for us or for our adversaries. It is an encounter to invite us to be for the Lord. He is the Commander, and He is calling us to be for Him in the testimony of our lives. Like Joshua, we must take off our sandals. We must stand barefoot upon the ground of Christ to become a testimony of Christ in our lives. It is a place of embracing vulnerability before God. A place of inviting truth by the mercy of God and not by the strength of our own way. It is a testimony of trusting the Lord and submitting to His will in our lives.
As I have considered the Rock of Christ some attributes have impressed my spirit. What are attributes of the Rock? As I am considering this, the following attributes come to my mind, such as: steadfast; anchored; trustworthy; enduring; immovable; dependable; treasure house; hidden truth; faithful; solid; strong; unshakeable; foundational; generational; refuge; shelter; stronghold (of love); and salvation.
Responding to hearing God is what joins us to the Rock of Christ. It is a relationship of dancing with the Spirit of God, with Holy Spirit as the lead partner in our live. This is the true strength of our foundation that will lead to increasing life in our earthly and heavenly journey. It is our response to God’s voice in our lives that will empower us to find Him in an increasing way of intimacy. Hearing God’s voice and responding to what He says is essential for a sure foundation in our lives. Hearing God is not merely about knowing what to do. Our response to God in our lives is not merely about the things we do in life. It is about the substance of our lives. Hearing God is a matter of knowing God. Knowing God is more important than knowing what to do, because knowing God is what transforms our lives to become as He is in our character, nature, way, power, and authority. As we enter this new year we must seek to be people of God and not merely people who are blessed by God’s merciful love. This is to be people who walk in God’s life-transforming grace.
Grace is a testimony of God’s life overcoming all manner of dysfunction and death. We often think that we are wrestling with circumstances in our lives, but the truth is that God is wrestling with us in life. He is wrestling with us because He wants us to know Him and to manifest who we are meant to be because of Him and in Him. Our strength is not in the flesh. Our strength is in the presence of God in our lives. It is also the presence of us in the life and testimony of God. Jacob sought the blessing of God in his life, but God wanted Jacob to know that God had an even greater plan. Jacob thought his journey was the journey of Jacob (a seeker of God’s love), but God wanted him to know that His journey was that of being Israel (a prince with God).
Genesis 32:24 Then Jacob was left alone; and a Man wrestled with him until the breaking of day. 25 Now when He saw that He did not prevail against him, He touched the socket of his hip; and the socket of Jacob’s hip was out of joint as He wrestled with him. 26 And He said, “Let Me go, for the day breaks.” But he said, “I will not let You go unless You bless me!” 27 So He said to him, “What is your name?” He said, “Jacob.” 28 And He said, “Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel; for you have struggled with God and with men, and have prevailed.” 29 Then Jacob asked, saying, “Tell me Your name, I pray.” And He said, “Why is it that you ask about My name?” And He blessed him there.
I believe this year is going to be filled with things of wrestling, but there is also going to be a comeback to God, a comeback to victory, and a comeback to one another as the people of God. It is our opportunity to become people who are steadfast, anchored, trustworthy, enduring, immovable in our faith, dependable, habitations of precious treasures, authentic testimonies of truth, faithful, solid in the character of Christ, strong in the Lord, unshakeable in our love, foundations for generational inheritances, refuges of hope, shelters of life, strongholds of God’s love, and ambassadors of the salvation God in the environment of our word. This is a day to know the sure mercies of David with the opening of legitimate doors and the closing of illegitimate doors to become the authentic truth of the people of God in this world.
Ted J. Hanson
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