Please click on the audio player below to listen to today’s message. Thank you!
You will eat the fruit of your labor; blessings and prosperity will be yours.
We reflected on this Bible verse yesterday as part of my birthday message, the first in 8 years. As I stated in yesterday’s post, I’m another year older, yet I still have big dreams and goals for my life, family, and community. The only person who can get in the way is me, so I must stay prayed up and never let up. The same is true for you. The only person who can get in your way is you. You must stay prayed up and never let up.
If you recall, from my 2011 birthday message that I shared yesterday, I was focused on dreams and goals and expressing the energy expected of me to be all that I was created to be. As I reflected yesterday, what has been missing in my life is God. I haven’t partnered with Him in every aspect of my life. I haven’t been walking with Him. I’ve been doing my own thing and then running to Him to fix the messes I make, heal the wounds I cause, and remove the shackles I place upon myself.
Our labor is tough because of our misalignment. Many people refer to the Adam and Eve story and the punishment God gave Adam was that Adam’s labor would be strenuous. That means that before that moment, when Adam (the Hebrew word for man) used to work in the garden, it wasn’t strenuous; there was great joy and feelings of accomplishment in the work performed. He had everything he needed and didn’t have to want for anything. But he listened to the liar, took in knowledge without context and guidance from God, and then made a complete fool of himself.
One of his punishments was hardened labor. Man would feel the toil of daily work. It’s the price of being self-centered rather than God-centered. Since the fall of man, many people have had a negative relationship with labor. That is why we find so many people trying their best to avoid, minimize, and redefine it. Maybe it’s our misunderstanding and misapplication that is causing us the turmoil. When our work is not for His glory, we find it to be painful. When we’re chasing our goals and not His, we find ourselves lost, dazed, and confused.
God works and so should we. But look at why He works and compare it to why we do; there you will see the disconnect. That is why God gives us dreams and reminds us that our ability to walk in that reality is only possible when we do are part of the labor. He has already done His and is waiting on us. He’s light years ahead of us, working on even newer ideas. And as always, having to course-correct us every time we try to steer the car somewhere different. But if we think we can get to the places and moments we see in our dreams, and have those things without working and making contributions, then we’re sadly mistaken and will always wander lost in the forest of life.
Adam and Chavah (known in English as Eve) listened to the enemy and thought they could take the easy route, bypass things, take the fast pass, jump in the HOV lane, and somehow usurp God’s order and authority — and they learned the hard lesson the hard way. And daily, the enemy and his crew do major work to see if they can convince you to make the same blunder for your life.
Don’t believe those lies!
Set aside some time and speak silently or aloud to God. Ask Him to reshare a dream He recently gave you so that you can meditate on it with Him. Ask Him questions about the dream, whatever comes to your mind, where you need clarity, ask. He doesn’t have issues with your questions; He has issues with your belief that He is incapable, too busy, or unwilling to help you. Jesus is quoted as saying that we’re to ask questions. Learning comes from getting answers to questions. Don’t you think Jesus asked God questions? What do you think he was doing when he would separate himself from his followers and go pray? He wasn’t out there making drawings and sculptures with sand, plants, and dirt. He was asking for guidance and clarity. He asked for the best approach to a situation and the best way to say something.
God keeps replaying dreams in your mind, day and night, to show you your future which is His past. He is excited to see you walk in and embrace that reality, and He wants to help you get there sooner than later. God has provided us with the tools and resources to help us achieve the impossible and unimaginable. We have to trust Him. The concepts of dreams, goals, and objectives were given to us by God; He taught us their meaning and purpose.
What goals would you like to pursue to achieve the dreams God has given you?
Talk to God about them. Ask Him to advise you on the goals and objectives, and which resources and tools to use. Then, with His guidance, set a goal with a date and each day work to achieve that goal. It doesn’t have to be a big goal, or it can be. Just make sure it’s reasonable and attainable. Saying you want to travel to Mars next week just won’t “cut the mustard” as the saying goes.
Maybe the goal is:
- Lose 20 lbs by February 28, 2023
- Start writing a book and have it self-published by October 24, 2023, or by a publishing house by June 3, 2025
- Take a management course starting on January 16, 2023
- Organize your closets and the cabinets in each room by December 23, 2022
- Switch to a lifestyle of daily clean eating and exercising 3x per week beginning November 1, 2022
- Beginning February 6, 2023, switch to eating a plant-based diet 3x per week and the other 4 days making fruits and veggies the largest portion on your plate.
These are just some examples. Do you see that they are both challenging and attainable? The challenge puts some intensity under you while realizing it’s feasible motivates you to get the job done.
I said to attach a date to the goal because it further motivates you to press forward and keep your foot on the throttle. It also holds you accountable, especially if you share your goals with other people who want to see you succeed.
A goal without a date attached is a dream. Sometimes we get lazy and passive with our dreams. We don’t pursue them like they are meant for us. Until you make that dream a serious focus, you will regard it with casualness. That’s why so many of us will say, “I guess it wasn’t meant to be” when the truth is, we could have had it had we tried; we could’ve had it had we put in the work and followed God’s lead. God puts ideas out in the atmosphere just like the stars we see in the sky. As I mentioned during my 2020 book release slash birthday party, if you don’t embrace and run with the idea, someone else will. That’s why we have that dumb and confused look on our faces when we see a total stranger prosper from the same idea we had. Family, they saw the star too; the difference is they made something of that opportunity and followed the correct map while you chose to do other things.
Now don’t confuse dreams with visions and prophesy. That’s for another conversation. But let me quickly say that visions and prophecy may have a sense of urgency or concreteness a dream may not. They may be given to you to share with others, to help bring about change, or to prepare for a major shift; they are designed for God to work through you in a unique way.
So back to your homework assignment…
Set a goal with a date and work towards accomplishing it. Once you have, celebrate it, praise God for helping you, and then when you’re called to move on to the next goal, don’t delay—do it! Every day your focus should be on doing something to better yourself, your family, and your community—believing that it will pay off and the dividends can help to better our world.
Make today a super awesome day. It’s your choice to see the dark clouds or the light shining through them. Work like you love it. Work like your purpose is to glorify God and have the best relationship you can with Him because guess what? That’s exactly what you’re supposed to be doing. God bless you all!
Father, thank You for the abundance of blessings. Thank You for my life, mind, freedom, and the ability to work. Father, I know You despise laziness, so everyday I actively take part in this life you have given me, doing and being more than the last day. Thank You for the resources that You have provided. I pray to not waste or abuse them. Thank You for Your loving care today and always.
Tell me what You want me to focus on today. Tell me what steps You want me to take to get closer to the dream You have given me. What do You want me to today to be better aligned with You? Who do You want me to speak with today? How do You want me to bless others today? What do You want me to read and research today? I come to You excited and willing. I want to fully embrace this journey, by Your side, giving You all of the glory. Amen.
And with that family, I pray that you are blessed, that you see and embrace your blessings, and that you are a blessing to others.
Copyright 2011-2022. Natasha L. Foreman. Some Rights Reserved. All Prayers and Reflections are Copyright Protected by Natasha L. Foreman. BreakingBreadWithNatasha.com
Music: Climb by Shane Ivers; Quiescent In Time by Shane Ivers – https://www.silvermansound.com