I was thinking last evening that people need to be encouraged, even when there are important issues and considerations to be pondered that are happening, or that are to come.
Sometimes I’ve thought that the majority of my messages that point to what we should be preparing for, may not always encourage us as much as they should.
My job in speaking forth what God has to say to the Church, needs to have an element of encouragement in it, otherwise, we can lose hope in the journey that is before us.
I say this knowing that there are times certainly when some of these words can be filled with ominous things on the horizon. Other times, a word may be just a simple word of comfort, edification, or exhortation, and that is certainly needed.
However, I also believe that particular phrases and words stand out more than others, and because of this, certain things that have been stated can be missed.
If an army is all assembled and ready for battle, they need to know that there is a sunrise after the night has come. This is especially true when the battles that they face are bloody, and many of their fellow soldiers have fallen.
On the other hand, if one isn’t warned that the enemy is approaching, and they only hear the birds chirping, or feel the warmth of the sun on their face, then they are left as a casualty upon the field.
So it’s certainly not that I would want to direct the flow of what the Father is saying, but hopefully to be open more to instilling in others the hope of their salvation, so that it may prove to be an anchor in the days ahead. We must all continue on the path ahead that we are all walking upon. When we are weak and tired, then we would hear,
“Therefore, strengthen the hands that are weak and the knees that are feeble.” Hebrews 12:12.
Whether the days are filled full of sunshine or rain, or calamity, we still need to be reminded and encouraged of the hope that we look for.
“This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope sure and steadfast and one which enters within the veil,” Hebrews 6:19.
“For we are saved by hope; but hope that is seen is not hope, for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?” Romans 8:24.
We have only to look back upon those who have gone before us to consider the lives that they led, and how utterly impossible it would have been for them to continue on with their lives, unless they had an abundance of this hope and faith.
“All these died in faith, without receiving the promises, but having seen them and having welcomed them from a distance, and having confessed that they were strangers and exiles on the earth,” Hebrews 11:13.
“And what more shall I say? For time will fail me if I tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets, who by faith conquered kingdoms, performed acts of righteousness, obtained promises, shut the mouths of lions, quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, from weakness were made strong, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight. Women received back their dead by resurrection; and others were tortured, not accepting their release, so that they might obtain a better resurrection,” Hebrews 11:32-35.
“And all these, having gained approval through their faith, did not receive what was promised, because God had provided something better for us, so that apart from us they would not be made perfect,” Hebrews 11:39-40.
And so, how would all of these endured hardships and suffering if their faith and hope wasn’t instilled in them?
What purpose would there have been in even living, much less in going through such horrendous things?
When one studies the prophecies of the major and minor prophets, they soon find out that even though judgment and warning is stated, there is also an abundance of God’s mercy and love extended.
One sees a balance between these two attributes, and even though one may at first glance appear to be more pronounced, a closer inspection reveals God’s deep love expressed as well.
“For judgment will be merciless to one who has shown no mercy; mercy triumphs over judgment,” James 2:13.
~ Stephen Hanson
Stephen Hanson of In His Truth Ministries came to the LORD is a special way in 1975 and has prophesied regularly since. In these end-time birthing pangs we are reminded that judgment must first begin with the household of God. Will we be prepared and ready?