The pressures of the virus shutdown in the USA cause many of us to search for new strength to recover our livelihoods. How do we find new strength and recover what is lost?
God loves to Restore and Multiply Blessings
The bible has many references, stories, prophecies and promises about RESTORING people, nations (especially Israel) and multiplying things that were lost. Many passages remind us to expand the Kingdom of God on earth. Many of these passages also require certain degrees of obedience and humility among His people. Here is a short list of some of the remarkable references:
Genesis 42:25—Knowing that God asks us to forgive, Joseph forgives his brothers for sending him into slavery. He RESORES money and provides (MULTIPLIES) food for the famine in Canaan.
Deuteronomy 8:1-19—Moses hears from God and reminds the Israelites that they must follow the Lord’s commands and remember that they do not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds from His mouth (Rhema). Fulfilling these commands will result in blessing and MULTIPLICATION (Verse 13). He establishes a covenant to assure their future blessings.
2 Chronicles 7:14—If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land (RESTORE the land from drought, locusts, and pestilence).
Job 42:10—“The Lord RESTORED Job’s losses when he prayed for his friends. Indeed, the Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before.” (Bill Johnson notes that the Lord blessed his prayers and forgiveness of the friends who blamed Job for his misfortune).
Psalms 51:12—David repents for his sins and asks the Lord to “RESTORE to me the joy of Your salvation (NKJV)” and “make a fresh start in me, shape a Genesis week from the chaos of my life (The Message).”
Matthew 17:11-12—”Indeed, Elijah is coming first and will RESTORE all things. But I say to you that Elijah has come, and they did not know him.” (Commentators in the NKJV interpret “Elijah” in this case to be John the Baptist who called everyone to repent and come back to God).
The Example of King David
The story of King David in the First Samuel, chapter 30, gives us some strategies to strengthen ourselves in the Lord and restore what we have lost. The Amalekites had attacked Ziklag, burned the town and stole the families and goods of David’s men. The men were ready to stone David! However, in verse 6 and 8 the bible tells us that: “David strengthened himself in the Lord his God…So, David inquired of the Lord saying, ‘Shall I pursue this troop? Shall I overtake them?’ And He answered him, ‘Pursue for you shall surely overtake them and without fail recover all.”
Eleven Ways to Strengthen Yourself in the Lord
(Adapted and Supplemented by Pastor G. Harold[i] from the ideas in Bill Johnson’s book on Strengthening Yourself)
- Follow David’s good examples: Start in quiet places, alone with God; Praise and worship Him every day, even write songs or send Him your thanks and praises in your own words. Before any big events in your life, call on God’s guidance through the Holy Spirit in you. Ask for wisdom and strength particularly during times of temptation or depression. Seek to become “a person after God’s own heart!”
- Guard Your Heart. First, think correctly about God (He is GOOD, not the severe judge against His beloved ones) and you have a royal identity in Christ—be reminded of being a child of God, an Ambassador for Him, one He loves! Laugh at the lies of the enemy—they are far weaker than the Holy Spirit. Control the environment among your closest friends/family—protect your “core group” –your “tribe” by not including skeptical, angry, bitter people into your closest group. Love them and minister to them, but do not make them best of friends.
- Thanksgiving—the password to Heaven. “Enter His courts with praise!” Even in times of stress, find a way to thank Him for something—anything like a cup of coffee, a flower, the day He has made! Start any quiet-time hearing sessions with thanksgiving and praise to Jesus, the Father, and the Holy Spirit. Strive to be the “most thankful person in your town/city.”
- Maintain a Lifestyle of Worship and Praise. Listen to good, worshipful music in the morning, in the car, whenever you can. The sounds of praise are much better than the daily news, the newspaper, the next football game, the next shopping spree! Try not to get too introspective, constantly comparing yourself to others or remembering your mistakes and bad moments. Live in the present not the past—Jesus wants you TODAY—His day!
- Find ways to do what David did: Read the passage from First Samuel chapter 30 and study the following steps David took:
- .David put on an Ephod (simple linen covering to show humility) and inquired of God.
- David and his men found a “spy” (an Egyptian) from the enemy to help them plan their attack. Although you may not really have enemies—just rival businesses or organizations—you can find someone who knows your rivals well and have them make suggestions on how to compete.
- David only took 200 men instead of 400 because some were tired. Search for helpers that are ready for an intense rebuilding process.
- David went after the enemy to recover the families and all their goods. This means that you move forward even if you are not completely sure how it will develop. Also, fear and negative thinking must be replaced by expectancy and faith.
- Record and Keep Note of Promises God has Given you. If you do not have any direct promises yet, take the ones from scripture (He is always with us; the Holy Spirit lives in you; you have the future of Glory in heaven, etc.) Declare your promises when you are stressed or challenged.
- The Power of Testimonies. Record and collect testimonies of great things that have happened to you or among friends, from church, or from any books or media sources you find them in. They are prophetic in the sense of having the power to multiply and duplicate the same miracles or blessings. So, declare them loudly and see what happens!
Pastor G. Harold Roid[ii]
[i]Adapted and Supplemented by Pastor G. Harold from Bill Johnson (2015) Strengthen yourself in the Lord: How to release the hidden power of God in your life. Shippensburg, PA: Destiny Image Publishers. NOTE. The “ways of David” #5 was added by Pastor Harold. For Charismatic and Pentecostal readers, Bill Johnson adds “Speaking in Tongues” as an additional way to help spiritual warfare and revelation.
[ii] My family has felt for a long time that I need to reveal my full name (Gale Harold Roid). And my last name is listed on our “Overcomer” book in the Store of this website, so the “cat is out of the bag” anyway! It is time for me to “step up” and not try to hide behind an abbreviated name—my apologies to all our readers of these blogs. Given the various attacks against Christians in the USA, it is time to be proud of our national history as a Christian nation.