“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:11-13
This is a set of verses that people love to quote. They love to hear the idea that God wants to prosper them and give them a great future. The problem that is common, is that many people do not look at the context in which these verses are written.
At the time God made this statement, the Israelites were going into exile in Babylon. They were prisoners of war. Their homes and towns were destroyed. They were cast out of their homeland. All their belongings were taken away.
As a person reads this, one may wonder how God is planning to prosper them. Why would He be placing them in exile if He wanted to prosper them?
While the Israelites were in captivity, they would show the love of God, by praying for them. They would work hard and serve the Babylonians as though they were serving God. The challenge was that they would have to do this for seventy years before they would receive the prosperity of their homeland again.
God has plans to prosper you, but those plans may be in the long run, not immediate. It may take time to get to that point. On this earth you may never prosper financially as the world sees prosperity, but you may prosper in peace, joy, contentment, and love. You will know that you have a future that will never come to an end. You will know that someday you will have a mansion with many rooms in heaven on a street of gold.
In order to get all of that, however, you must seek God with all of your heart. You must put His desires first in your life. It is not about you and your prosperity or wealth, but what God wants.
Find Jesus and you will have a hope that is above anything the world can offer or has. You may not see it completely this side of heaven, but it is coming, just like the Israelites had to wait for it.
I pray today that you will know God’s plans for your life; that you will trust God’s timing in your life; that you will know the prosperity God has in store for you; and that you will seek God with all of your heart.
Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the LORD for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper. Jeremiah 29:7
Going into exile was a difficult thing for the Israelites of Judah to do. As they are going into exile, God now tells them to settle in and serve their enemy. Then on top of that God tells them to pray for their enemy to prosper. His reason for praying for the enemy to prosper is that if the enemy prospers, so do the Israelites.
Praying for the enemy is something many Christians have no problem doing. However, it is how they pray for the enemy that is different. It is common to hear a Christian pray for his enemy that God would strike them down, or remove them. The focus is to change that person, so that one can have a better life. The problem with this type of prayer is that it is totally self-focused.
Years later Jesus would tell all believers to pray for their enemy and bless them, not curse them. Praying for the prosperity of your enemy is a blessing upon them. Doing this shows the enemy the love of God, not the hatred of people.
Not blessing your enemy will fall back on you in the same way. If the economy of everyone around you is failing, your economy will also fail. If there is no peace with everyone around you, then you will not have any peace either. If there is poverty all around you, then you will also have poverty.
No person can have peace or prosperity completely alone. It takes a community to have either. There will always be some in your community that will be your enemy–those who do not follow Jesus. If they do not prosper, you cannot prosper.
Along with physical prosperity, every person needs to know the love of Jesus. If you are praying against them and for their downfall, where is there any love in that? How will they know the love of Jesus, when all they see is hatred?
You may not always agree with your enemy, but you can pray for God to bless them and draw them closer to Him by His love and care. It is His kindness that will draw them to Him.
I pray today that you will know God’s love for your enemies; that you will show God’s love to your enemies; that you will be able to pray God’s blessings on your enemies; and that many will come to know Jesus through the love you show them.
I form the light and create the darkness, I bring prosperity and create disaster; I, the LORD, do all these things. Isaiah 45:7
The world questions how things come to be or how things happen the way that they do. People want to be in full control of their own lives. They want to take the credit for the good things that occur in their lives. And they want to blame others for the negative or bad things that occur.
Many people will believe in God when things are going good for them. When prosperity is happening, there is a strong belief in God. However, when things turn bad, many will also turn away from God, blaming Him for their troubles.
The hard part for many to accept is that God is the one who allowed the bad things to happen and He did it in love. For most people, it is difficult to think that a perfect loving God would allow pain and suffering in this life. When a bad situation occurs in the life of a person, many choose to walk away from God. They get angry with what He has allowed, or refuse to believe that a loving God would allow it to happen.
Yet, God says He is the one who brings prosperity and disaster in the lives of people of this world. Both events are allowed in the best interest of the people.
In your own personal life, there will be times God allows prosperity to allow you to see His blessings. Other times there will be disaster, to allow you to lean on Him and trust Him more. Going through a disaster gives God the ability to show you His power.
Instead of looking at disaster as a bad thing, see it in light of God perfecting you. Look forward to the many ways God may bring you through that disaster back into prosperity again. In the end you will walk on streets of gold in heaven with God for all eternity, if you trust Him and stay with God.
Allow God to be the Master of your life. Do not fear prosperity or disaster. Know that God is in control of both.
I pray today that you will trust God at all times; that you will not be angry with God when bad things occur; that God will be your Master; and that God will strengthen you in all things.
Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy. Proverbs 28:13
It is easy for people to believe that something that is not seen cannot harm them or have an effect on them. They often try to keep things hidden from other people. Things that are hidden are things that they know are wrong in reality.
It is seldom physical things that are kept hidden, but things that are done. Personal sins that people do and do not want anyone else to know about. Many sins are done in the dark or at night. Think about when bars and nightclubs are open, and what the lighting is like in those places. People do not want their sins seen, yet the danger is still there.
In the body, a cancer cell is extremely small and cannot be seen by the naked eye. Yet, let alone to grow, it can destroy the entire body and cause death. In the same way, a sin, no mater how little, can grow and destroy the body and cause death.
Solomon says that the person who conceals or hides his sin will not prosper. There are two ways to look at what it means to prosper. One is financially, the other is spiritually.
When you hide a sin in your life, you may or may not prosper financially. There are many people in this world who live in open sin that are financially very prosperous.
However, as you hide a sin in your life, you will not prosper spiritually. You are sinning against God and He sees it.
The first thing that you must do is confess the sin. This is to openly admit that you are sinning and what that sin is. At a minimum, you must confess this to God, then confess to others who may be hurt by it.
Then comes the important part–to renounce the sin. You must turn away from that sin and no longer do it. If you continue to do that sin, you have not done anything different.
Once you renounce it, God will forgive you of that sin. God is rich in love and mercy and wants to forgive you of all sin. Do not try to hide it from Him, confess, renounce and find mercy today.
I pray today that God will reveal any hidden sin in your life; that you will confess all sin to God; that God will strengthen you to turn from all sin; and that you will know God’s love and mercy in your life.
But as for me, my feet had almost slipped; I had nearly lost my foothold. For I envied the arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked. Psalm 73:2-3
One thing that is very difficult for many people is watching others prosper and succeed. This becomes especially true when the method of prosperity is done in a very bad way.
The majority in the world do not think anything of being envious of someone else. It is looked as part of the human nature to desire and really want what someone else has. Commercials are geared to bring out that envy in a person. They strive to get a person to want something someone else has so bad that they will do anything they can to get it.
As believers, the view should be different. Asaph, the writer of this psalm, writes that he almost slipped in envy. Envy is another word for coveting, which God said that His people were not to ever do.
There are times when a believer can look at someone in the world and be envious of what that person has or can do. Watching someone go on vacations around the world, drive fancy cars, eat out at fancy restaurants, and have big bank accounts can bring about envy in a person. Believers often struggle with this, when the person is very prosperous with sinful activities. Many will question God as to why that happens.
Some in the church will also be filled with envy for another person’s abilities or position in the church.
You should look at what God has given you in Jesus Christ. You have life for all eternity. The world may have all the fancy cars and houses with big bank accounts, but they will never have the peace and life that Jesus provides. They only have today and tomorrow will be death for them for eternity.
Do not look at their wealth and desire it. Do not allow your feet to slip into the sin of envy. Look at God and the wealth of life that He provides. God provides more blessings than anything in this world can ever provide.
What do you desire today?
More of God?
Or more of this world?
I pray today that you will see all that God has given you; that you will not desire the things of this world; that you will be a witness of what Jesus has given; and that you will know the blessings of God.
Kingdom Business is a movement, faithfully using all gifts, skills and oppertunities that God has given to us for the furtherance of His Kingdom. I welcome You to Kingdom Business, and I pray that you find something here that bless you richly. ...LOVE...GRACE...PEACE
Welcome. My blog is a place where readers will find writings of personal experiences, thoughts, and the peace that the Lord provides throughout my walk. I intend to bring inspiration and insight, as well as providing a very personal and transparent view into my life, in order to help others see their own lives in a different perspective. I strongly believe that we all need a different view at times, in order for our own personal growth to take place.
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