This is Part 2 in a series of blog posts based on a message I shared at Revive 2016 Girls Night Out on March 10th. You can find Part 1 here.
I want to look at a passage of scripture that will help us to understand the concept of sticking to the starting point of breakthrough no matter what life throws at us. Our story is found in the book of Luke chapter 1 starting in verse 5. The passage introduces us to the parents of John the Baptist. Everyone know John? He was the prophetic voice who came just before Jesus (they were actually cousins) and spoke about him so some would recognize him when he got here. He even baptized Jesus. So we’re going to be talking about the parents of this amazing man who played a pivotal role in the Messiah being pointed out in the earth. John’s parents were Zechariah and Elizabeth.
In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah, of the division of Abijah. And he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statutes of the Lord. But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were advanced in years.
Now, while he was serving as priest before God when his division was on duty, according to the custom of the priesthood, he was chosen by lot to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense. And the whole multitude of the people were praying outside at the hour of incense. And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. And Zechariah was troubled when he saw him, and fear fell upon him. But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zechariah, for your prayer has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John. And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth, for he will be great before the Lord. And he must not drink wine or strong drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb. And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God, and he will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready for the Lord a people prepared. (Luke 1:5-17)
Here's my first point: YOU’VE GOT TO STICK TO THE STARTING POINT OF BREAKTHROUGH NO MATTER WHAT. You’ve got to stand on your promise and not be moved. No matter what anyone says. No matter what the circumstances say. You’ve got to stick to that thing.
Scripture tells us that Elizabeth was barren and both she and Zechariah were advanced in age. Common sense told them it was impossible to have a baby. But how many of you understand that God isn’t bound by common sense? God does what he wants. The Bible says that he watches over his word to perform it (Jeremiah 1:12). And it says his word never returns void to him, but does all he sends it out to do (Isaiah 55:11). It prospers! The promises he speaks to you about you and your life are his word. He will perform his word. He will see the purposes spoken over your life prosper.
Here's a question: How do we know that Zechariah even had a promise to have a baby? In verse 13 the angel Gabriel says to Zechariah, “your prayer has been heard.” What this says to me is that this man was bold enough, even in the face of harsh circumstance – barren womb and advanced age – to PRAY that they would have a child. I’m not sure when the last time was that he had prayed about it – maybe many years – but the point is that at some point in life he grabbed a hold of a promise he felt the Lord make to him and he prayed into that thing. The first key to sticking, no matter what, to the starting point of breakthrough is that you PRAY what may seem like unreasonable prayers. You stay on that thing and you pray into it like it could happen tomorrow. NO MATTER WHAT!
What’s the promise you’re hearing for your life? The promise that looks like it could NEVER come to pass? The promise that seems to be mocking you because everything in reality seems to be pointing the other way. What’s that promise in your life? I want to say this to you: The starting point of breakthrough is ALWAYS standing on the promise. No matter what the world says or what the current, hot process of the moment is. It’s not about trying to figure it out, it’s not about trying to reinvent yourself so you can fit into what you think it looks like better, it’s not about spending hours and days and weeks trying to figure out what went wrong so you can rechart a course. God says he will do that FOR you in Isaiah 30, remember?
No, your part in this story, my friend, is to stand on the promise no matter what. Do not waiver, do not relent, do not give up, and do not give in to doubt. If he said it, he will do it! One day Jesus was on his way to heal the daughter of an influential man, but he got distracted along the way because of the crowds and those needing healing. The man's daughter died. But Jesus looked straight at the man and said, “Don’t doubt. Only believe.” (Mark 5:36) You may think your promises are dead. Long gone, in fact. But God is the God of resurrection power. He makes dead things come back to life. Nothing is too far gone for him if you have faith. What promise needs a faith injection in your life right now? What promise needs to be brought out of the tomb today? I want to push you to believe again, to dream again. I want to challenge you to not doubt, but only believe! Jesus raised that little girl from the dead; surely he can raise up your dreams.
Sticking starts with praying. It starts with speaking to the Lord about what you’re hearing. Notice, I did not say complaining. And I did not say to give him a list of all the reasons it couldn’t possibly work out. Praying. Telling him how glad you are that he spoke to you and gave you passion and desire for something. Asking him questions about what you’ve seen and heard – more color, more detail, more excitement, please! AGREEING with the promise in prayer to him. “Yes, Lord, I see that! I can see it coming towards me. I’m excited about what it’s going to be like when it’s here.” Faith!
We all know the interesting thing that happens when an opera singer sits on constant C long enough while there’s a crystal glass in the room, right? Supposedly, it shatters. But here’s something I found out while doing a little research. Scientists say that, yes, in fact, it is possible for a glass to shatter if the opera singer sings at a certain frequency long enough, but there are two other factors that must be considered.
#1 – Volume. Enough air displacement must occur close enough to the glass for the glass to actually be impacted to the point where it will break. We’ve got to be LOUD when we constantly stick to the point!
#2 – Whether the glass will break or not depends on microscopic cracks already found in the structure when it was forged. When the loud, constant sound begins to vibrate the glass, it’s these inconsistencies – these built in, weak points – that will determine whether the glass will shatter. The more inconsistent and erratic, the better the chance the glass will shatter.
Can I tell you something? The devil is imperfect. And every stronghold he has built around your promises is imperfect. There are imperfections built in, from the start, throughout that entire thing. And if you will just decide today that you are going to sit on that starting point – constantly, unrelentingly – and not get off, if you will sing long and loud and not give up, if you will just keep agreeing with the word of the Lord for your life no matter what, the enemy's cracks will be the undoing of that stronghold. YOU WILL SEE YOUR PROMISE!
There is a point 2 to this message, and I'll be posting it up soon.