Four Ways to Grow in God's Favor
Last month I had the privilege to visit a campus ministry on the USC campus. I was completely blown away at 200 plus students who were crammed into a small room, shoulder to shoulder. Not only was it a tight fit, there was no A/C and the room felt like 100 degrees. I could not only feel the heat, I sensed the dense presence of Holy Spirit. I was so moved by the passion of these students that I broke down in tears at the beauty of passion and sacrifice. I was experiencing a micro-revival, pure beauty. I asked my friend why would a bunch of kids worship and pray for hours soaked in sweat. He said, “Because a few paid the price for this outpouring years ago through prayer and seeking God”.
At times it can feel like the provisions, favors, and blessings of God are hard to come by. God is a giver and often through his grace we get blessed with treasures that we do not deserve or did not earn. But as we mature in the Lord, God is intent on moving us into spiritual maturity that positions us for not only breakthrough but more importantly, higher levels of connection to the divine. Here are four positions that we can take (I’m sure there are more) to connect us deeper into the divine and in a sense, gain God’s favor:
Four Ways to Grow in God’s Favor
1. SEEK THE SUPERNATURAL
To me, to “seek the Kingdom” means to look for the supernatural in our everyday life. This requires the gift of faith. If we are to gain God’s favor or rewards, we must be obedient and step out in faith.
Hebrews 11:6 “and without faith it is impossible to please God because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.”
Granite Creek has taken a lot of risks this past year in seeking the supernatural lifestyle. A great example of this would be our Wednesday night healing class led by Mike and Kim Noyes. Not only did they teach people how to pray for and heal the sick, their team has functioned in words of knowledge and divine appointments. Many were physically healed including Mike Winters’ 20-year bout with asthma! His inhaler is still sitting on my desk as a trophy to God’s goodness.
2. WORK ON YOUR CHARACTER
To me to seek his righteousness means God has called us to be men and women of character. This is almost as hard as stepping out in faith because to be a Christian of character requires not only obedience to the Lord but a death to self.
Galatians 5:24 “and those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.”
3. AMP UP YOUR PERSONAL PRAYER LIFE
My church is growing, becoming healthier and more influential because of our collective prayer life! There is a new excitement about prayer. This year we launched a new intercessory prayer group that meets on the first Sunday of every month. This has proven to be a powerful time where people are praying in the Spirit for the church and the city. This is a game changer. I can’t explain it, you have to experience it.
Romans 8:26-27 “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness.” We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will…If God is for us, who can be against us?…how will he not graciously give us all things?
4. STAY CONSISTENT
The happiest, most fulfilled people I know are the ones that have stayed consistent in church attendance and are plugged into weekly community. One such family who will remain anonymous has been faithful to my church for 20 plus years. They could have left years ago when the going got tough, or when the church experienced a crisis, when some of their friends left, or if the programs weren’t meeting their family’s needs. They remained obedient to God’s will and as a result God has blessed their finances, a number of family relationships and they are experiencing an honor that only comes through grace and perseverance.
Hebrews 10:24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
The author of Hebrews will go on to explain the value and blessings of remaining faithful to the gathering.
35 So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. 36 You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised.
Some of us simply lack confidence and have lost our reward because we have fallen into the habit of not going to church…. Be happy, stay fulfilled, gain confidence, get rewarded… stay consistent in going to church… TRUTH.
To grow deeper in the Lord, and to increase in favor, go hand in hand. One thing I love about my church is her desire to be with Jesus, not matter what the cost. Over the years people have stayed faithful in prayer, consistent in the gathering, done some hard work on becoming children of integrity who are after the supernatural things of God (the Kingdom). So, in a sense, they are a lot like those sweating college kids who are so hungry for revival that they will pay any price. Revival will be our reward and it will be worth it.