I enjoy automobile road trips. There’s something about a long road trip to unfamiliar places, especially through rural America, that excites me. Airline travel can be just as adventurous, but a good road trip is priceless—in my opinion! Perhaps one day Carolyn and I can do a “Route 66” trip!
When I was a child, my parents took our family on numerous road trips through the Midwest, northeast, and south. Each journey was an adventure and time of discovery. Despite our family’s cramped conditions in the car, the trips were memorable. Nothing like family bonding in a 1964 Chevrolet Belair station wagon!
As I grew, I began to realize that life is a “continuous journey.” We are, if you will, on one big “road trip.” You never know what is around the next bend and you never know what you will discover. And yes, our “earthly road trip” can be a little “cramped” and uncomfortable at times. Nonetheless, life should be a “faith-filled” adventure, filled with optimism at what awaits.
This earth is our temporary home, our true citizenship is in heaven (Phil. 3:20). We are on a journey and our purpose and calling unfold each step of the way. Our journey is prophetic, determined by God before we were born. As we follow Jesus, prophetic destiny is unfolding, just as it did for him while he was on earth.
Today, I want to look more closely at our Prophetic Journey, and how we can align our lives with God’s purposes to live victoriously and fulfill his destiny for our lives.
You are Loved and Valued by God
Last week in the blog, “True Greatness,” we examined the humility and example of Jesus in Mark 9. To recap, in this chapter, Jesus is nearing completion of his mission on earth. He is leaving Galilee for Jerusalem where he will willingly hand himself over to be crucified and redeem humanity through this act. Jesus is on a prophetic journey to fulfill his mission and purpose!
Along the way, Jesus charges the disciples, “If anyone desires to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all.” (Mark 9:35) Jesus’ life and teaching oppose the prevailing cultural norm of leadership—then and now. Humility and weakness in the ancient world were not seen as virtues, but as signs of weakness. This new ethic adopted by the Church was part of what made Christianity appealing to many.
To symbolize this new ethic, Jesus puts a child in their midst and puts his arms around him, instructing them to receive children as they would Jesus himself. In the ancient world, children were considered “nonpersons” who had no legal rights or status of their own.
But each child, and every person, is loved, honored, and valued by God! Some may choose evil along the way, but God loved the world and gave his Son to redeem humanity. Therefore, we should love and value every child and person—everyone matters to God and has prophetic purpose.
David declared, “Your eyes saw my embryo, and on your scroll every day was written that was being formed for me, before any one of them had yet happened.” (Psalm 139:16 CEB) Your life is an unfolding of purpose—you matter to God!
God’s word to you releases your kingdom identity. You may have taken a wrong turn, but with God, your destiny is redeemable through surrender. He is a loving Father! Identity, calling, and destiny are discovered through a Father-Son relationship.
You are on a prophetic journey of fulfillment. Every step unfolds your destiny.
An ancient Chinese proverb states, “A journey of a 1000 miles begins with a single step.”
Even our failures and setbacks are opportunities for God to build and direct us. God is a loving Father and He is looking for friends! Friends of God hear his voice, obey, and follow him to fulfill their prophetic purpose. God desires heart to heart relationship with everyone.
Jesus set his face like a “rock” toward Jerusalem; nothing would prevent him from obeying the will of God and his purpose. Gethsemane was his surrender to prophecy!
The days and purposes for which God has created you are woven into your innermost being. It is a journey of discovering his heart to fulfill your prophetic purpose. On your journey with God, you are both discovering his purpose and becoming who God created you to be through Jesus. Your life is an adventure of faith!
The heart of God, and of prophecy, is love—for God is love. Prophecy reveals the perfect heart of Father God and edifies, strengthens, and comforts the hearer (see 1 Cor. 14:3).
Whether God speaks directly to us, or through another genuine God-inspired communication or prophecy, it is God’s heart of love communicated to us.
God’s voice to us is most often like our voice, not filled with condemnation or negativity, but filled with His peace and presence. God will never stop communicating with us throughout our lifetimes. Our role is to learn to discern His voice and act upon it.
God communicates his vision to us through love. He builds us up and inspires us to walk with him on a journey to impact others.
He looks for those who will believe his prophetic promises and dare to risk.
Remember the story of Abraham and Sarah leaving their home for God’s promised land? (See Heb. 11:8-12) Abraham and Sarah acted on and waited in faith upon God. Abraham and Sarah learned they could trust and obey God through their journey. They weren’t perfect, but they trusted God through the process.
God’s grace empowered Abraham to become a Father of Many Nations. They discovered God as a Father—One who deeply loves us. Abraham and Sarah had to align their lives with God’s prophetic promise to see it fulfilled.
Abraham and Sarah persevered, even though they didn’t see everything! Prophetic promise enables you to see when circumstances cloud the promise. Like a marathon runner getting a drink, hearing God’s voice (promise), refreshes and strengthens you—keep running your race—don’t get slowed down! Remember what the writer of Hebrews said,
“So then let’s also run the race that is laid out in front of us, since we have such a great cloud of witnesses surrounding us. Let’s throw off any extra baggage, get rid of the sin that trips us up, and fix our eyes on Jesus, faith’s pioneer and perfecter. He endured the cross, ignoring the shame, for the sake of the joy that was laid out in front of him, and sat down at the right side of God’s throne.” Heb. 12:1-2 CEB
God’s goodness and hope are prophetic principles to aid you on your journey.
“I know the plans I have in mind for you, declares the Lord; they are plans for peace, not disaster, to give you a future filled with hope.” Jer. 29:11 CEB
Prophecy reveals those plans that God has for you… to give you a hope.
God reveals by His Spirit things that your eye hasn’t seen—things God has prepared beforehand for you (1 Cor. 2:9-10). Your mind can’t conceive it, but his voice and prophecy reveal those plans God has for us. Your mind will eventually believe and conceive the reality of God’s plans.
Strategies to Help you Complete your Prophetic Journey
You and I need God’s strategies for each situation in life.
How do you believe and act on God’s promises or your prophecy? Strategy! Keep in mind that wars are won first in the strategy room, then carried out on the battlefield. By the way, the calling of the apostolic movement within the Church is to bring God’s Kingdom strategies to the Church and upon the world.
Strategy #1: Use prophetic words spoken over you as spiritual weapons
1 Tim. 1:18 CEB says, “Timothy, my child, I’m giving you these instructions based on the prophecies that were once made about you. So, if you follow them, you can wage a good war.” Take God’s written word and your prophecy and use it to war a good fight of faith against the circumstances that come to challenge your purpose and destiny.
Meditate on your prophecies. Learn them, recite them often. Pray them. Use them to map out a strategy to see them fulfilled—spiritually and practically.
Remember Jesus’s response to the devil in Matthew 4 and Luke 4? He resisted temptation and derailment of his assignment by using God’s word against the enemy.
Your destiny doesn’t depend on what others do to you. God’s promise to you empowers you to stand up and say, “This is what the Lord has said…”
Remember Moses? God sends Moses back to Egypt but allows him to be tested every step of the way. Finally, as Moses is leading the children of Israel out, they arrive at the Red Sea, and God says to Moses, “Why do you cry to Me? Tell the children of Israel to go forward. But lift up your rod, and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it. And the children of Israel shall go on dry ground through the midst of the sea.” (Exodus 14:14-15 NKJV)
Moses had a promise from God to get to the other side. He had to rely on that promise, which gave him authority over the situation. When you have a promise, don’t expect the enemy to lie down. Often, he hears the promises spoken over your life, then tries to stop you, destiny.
Take your word, use it as a form of prayer and worship. Go higher and hotter! Binding the devil does little; he has already been defeated by Christ (Col. 2:15). Rather, worship God passionately, make Him bigger in your eyes, and stand on your promises.
Most, perhaps 90%, of whether the prophecies come to pass in our lives depend on us—what we do with them—not what others do to us.
Strategy #2: Don’t neglect your gift, given through prophecy
1 Tim. 4:14 CEB “Don’t neglect the spiritual gift in you that was given through prophecy when the elders laid hands on you.” Gifts are imparted or activated through prophecy… some gifts are part of how God created you, they are within you, prophecy helps activate them into functioning.
Through prophecy and impartation, gifts are given and deposited into your life. It’s there in seed form but requires your cooperation to see it mature and bring a harvest. Give yourself to your prophecy—cultivate it in your life.
What has God spoken over you? It’s in seed form – be proactive to make it grow. Your prophecy won’t suddenly appear one night. You must cooperate with God, learn Kingdom principles, skills, education, grow spiritually, etc.
Realize that you can accept or reject what God is offering through prophecy. You have a choice, “Yes” or “No!” If you say no to the gift and calling of God, he still loves you, nothing changes that. If you say yes, it will cost you and you may miss out on something wonderful, but he loves you the same—you don’t earn more love!
The Lord once said to me, “Bob, many are called, but few are chosen.” (Matt. 22:14) He then said, “Few will choose to follow me—it is costly. It is a costly anointing—freely given yes—but total surrender is required.”
It will cost you something; are you willing to pay the price to see the prophecy fulfilled? Prophecy confirms calling. When you respond with a yes, the journey begins. The commissioning comes later. Paul was called in Acts 13 to apostolic ministry. His commissioning came 17 years later in Acts 19 where we read of unusual miracles and revival at Ephesus.
Consider Heb. 6:12, “inherit the promises through faith and patience.” Many drop out and give up before the commissioning by God—the prophecy and calling becomes too costly. When the commissioning comes, God will make it known. Other leaders will see it—you won’t have to make it happen. You must believe, be obedient, and be prepared—then the fulfillment and commissioning will come. Place yourself in the place of availability—then God will bring it to pass.
Strategy #3: Prophecy releases Kingdom identity
Psalm 139:16 NLT “You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.”
Jer. 1:5 NLT “I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.”
When God creates us, He places destiny within us, the plans for our lives. Each of us has a unique calling and destiny—it is dormant within us. Prophecy speaks to God’s destiny placed within us. Confirms our calling.
The Kingdom of God carries the identity of the Father. But, we are born into a world influenced by the devil. The development of our identity during our formative years can be influenced negatively by what we learn and experience. We may see ourselves as too tall, too short, overweight, rejected, abandoned, or as a failure, etc. We may not “naturally” have God’s true identity in our heart. What we are taught, and life’s experiences, help shape our identity.
But, when we are born again and come into the Kingdom of God, we bring an identity shaped by the world and life’s experiences. Must replace negative mindsets that are contrary to Kingdom mindsets and your true identity in God. In God’s Kingdom, His original calling, destiny, and identity are the same—prophecy helps bring this forward.
Paul stated, “Don’t be conformed to the patterns of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds so that you can figure out what God’s will is—what is good and pleasing and mature.” Rom. 12:2 CEB
Your mind, and heart, must be transformed to see yourself as God sees you. His original identity has never changed for your life.
You must learn Kingdom thoughts and beliefs. Replace your negative thoughts with Jesus’ thoughts and you will develop a Kingdom mentality—you have access to God’s Kingdom.
Gideon, he was afraid, hiding away, and timid. He was influenced by experience. An angel comes, releases prophecy, and declares his Kingdom identity over him. He became who God created him to be—a mighty deliverer and leader of God’s people.
Paul was a legalist and a murderer. He meets Jesus who speaks Kingdom identity over him. He was born to be a mighty apostle that would lead gentiles to Christ. He then began to live out of his true Kingdom identity—not the negative experiences of the past.
Prophecy reveals Kingdom identity. It reveals the heart of God and plans of God for that person. When we prophesy to others, we declare over them who they really are. Prophecy helps heal the wounds and hurts of the past, which moves them into Kingdom identity.
Don’t look at the weaknesses and failures in a person—but press in—to see the heart of God for others and yourself. Speak forth destiny to help move them, and yourself, into true identity.
Your Kingdom identity may seem impossible—may seem out of this world—and well it is! Remember (1 Cor. 2:9) “eye has not seen, nor ear has heard the things that God has prepared for those who love Him.” When we yield to God’s plan, He can bring it to pass.
What we will or will not do is impacted by the realm of limitations in our minds. The more renewed our minds are to God’s truths, the more we act in faith upon God’s promises and prophecies. When you reason in your mind, doubt comes. When you meditate in your heart on God’s truths—faith comes. Faith breeds hope. Hope in God’s promises brings expectation fulfilled.