Finding Peace in Uncertain Times

Bobby Conner

"For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."-Romans 8:38-39

People world-over are increasingly desperate to know what tomorrow will bring, frantic to prepare for the future. Global changes are coming rapidly-and no sooner than we've adjusted to these changes, new realities explode into our world.

Will you have confidence or entertain chaos during these turbulent times?

Will you fear what tomorrow may bring...or rest secure in your Father's loving care?

On a scale of one to ten, just how worried are you about your financial security? Your health? Your family? Your community and nation?

How peaceful are you as you lay your head on the pillow at night?

Do you choose to trust in your Lord...or entertain doubt and unbelief?

The choice is up to you. The Lord God gives us the responsibility to exercise our free will-to believe, to trust and to rejoice. What will we choose-death or life, blessings or curses?

The answer is given to us by God: He specifically exhorts us to choose to be blessed, which requires us to "choose life":

"I call Heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live."-Deuteronomy 30:19

In order to discover hope and abide securely, we must embrace this truth: only as we turn our focus upon Christ the King-Life Himself-do we obtain true peace (Isaiah 26:3). He said He came to give us life "more abundantly":

"The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly."-John 10:10

God Promises to Guide Us and Show Us Things to Come

To be sure, many Believers are not experiencing this life "more abundantly." And many unsaved in the world are choosing a frightful alternative-the occult. In response to the fear generated by the rapid change around us, society has seen a plethora of occult and demonic sources arise, with fortune tellers, astrologers and psychic hotlines pretending to peek into the mysteries of tomorrow. A Google search of "psychics" brings 4.3 million results! How many otherwise intelligent people glance at their "astrological signs" occasionally with the hope of finding direction? How many pay late-night psychic hotlines for a word of hope and encouragement?

Why do desperate people seek guidance and discernment from these so-called fortune tellers?

Might it be because the Church has been so silent concerning God's prophetic voice? Do we sincerely trust the Holy Spirit's constant help and guidance?

As followers of Christ, we have the very Spirit of God within us. We have full access to His divine wisdom- exceedingly far beyond anything else on earth! This is Good News!

"But when He, the Spirit of Truth (the truth-giving Spirit) comes, He will guide you into all the Truth (the whole, full Truth). For He will not speak His own message (on His own authority); but He will tell whatever He hears (from the Father; He will give the message that has been given to Him), and He will announce and declare to you the things that are to come (that will happen in the future)."-John 16:13 (Amplified Bible)

God's promise here is two-fold: the Spirit of truth will, without fail, guide us AND show us things to come.

This Greek word translated "show" is an extraordinary word that brings tremendous comfort and wisdom. The Greek anaggello is comprised of two parts, ana, that means into the midst, in the midst, amidst, among, between and the base of aggelos, which means a messenger, an angel, one sent from God. What does this mean? God will "show" us or anaggello us things to come-He will send us a messenger from eternity, an eternity that contains the future, to announce, make known, report back and bring tidings to us about tomorrow, next week, next month...or next year! This guarantee of future revelation is His Word to you, a promise which cannot fail.

Do you grasp the significance of this marvelous guarantee? The Lord Himself, before He suffered on the Cross, said it was to our "advantage" for Him to leave-so He could send this Helper to us, the Spirit of Truth:

"Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you."-John 16:7

This Helper will guide us not only into truth, but "into all truth"-revealing the full picture, the complete understanding of any situation we face, to the degree that He desires. God's people have tremendous power to understand "things to come." Meditate on this truth until you are fully persuaded that the Creator of the universe will indeed show you things to come and lead you into all truth!

We can see why God condemns and denounces all forms of astrology and psychic forecasting as demonic and fleshly. As a follower of Christ, we are not called to wonder about the future or to speculate, guess or even reason about potential events-but rather to see, know and understand the future through divine revelation for the glory of God and for His purposes. This understanding of "things to come" is not reserved for the prophets of the Church alone, but for the Blood-bought Believer who walks closely with the Holy Spirit, in holy reverence of the King: He reveals His secrets to His friends. Knowing "things to come" is the result of intimacy with God and thus having the mind of Christ, which is promised to Believers in 1 Corinthians 2:16:

"For 'who has known the mind of the LORD that he may instruct Him?' But we have the mind of Christ."

Why Must We Learn to Live Every Day in Light of Revelatory Understanding?

Why must we learn to live every day in light of revelatory understanding? Receiving knowledge of the future is not for our own glory or purposes, but He gives prophetic insight to us to manifest His glory on earth-to pray His will on earth. In fact, each of us is called to manifest Heaven on earth through prayer and through the knowledge of His Word. This is the heart of "The Lord's Prayer" that we all have memorized: "On earth as it is in Heaven." Have we realized the tremendous power of this prayer?

"Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them."-Mark 11:24

"Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us."-1 John 5:14

You may have wondered, "How do I know what to pray?" Great question! The Lord Jesus told us plainly, "Pray, then, in this way: 'Our Father who is in Heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your Kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven'" (Matthew 6:9-10).

Prayer is not at all complicated-but receiving answers to our prayers requires faith. How do we engage faith through prophetic vision and receive His answers?

1. ASK to hear the Word: Jesus encourages us to pray and receive by faith-but first, faith must be received by hearing the Word (see Romans 10:17). This means a specific revelatory rhema Word for your situation. How do we receive this rhema Word?

2. SEEK the Spirit of Truth: We hear revelation concerning the future by the Spirit of Truth. The Spirit reveals all truth through the Word for our specific circumstance. Why is this so essential? When the Spirit of Truth "shows us things to come" through the Word, we know these "things" are His will. Once we are thus assured of His will, we can...

3. KNOCK on Heaven's door: When we can ask according to His revealed will, He hears us-and when we know He hears us, we know we have the answers to our prayers!

We are in a season that God will answer your prayers:

"For He says: 'In an acceptable time I have heard you, and in the day of salvation I have helped you.' Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation."-2 Corinthians 6:2

"Thus says the LORD: 'In an acceptable time I have heard You, and in the day of salvation I have helped You; I will preserve You and give You as a covenant to the people, to restore the earth, to cause them to inherit the desolate heritages...'"-Isaiah 49:8

God has promised that if you will ask, seek and knock now, according to His will, He will answer your prayers-and your joy will overflow!

"Until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full."-John 16:24

Hear this, beloved: this is no the time to attempt to direct your own path with mere human wisdom! Scripture warns that there is a way that seems right unto man, but the end of that way leads to death and despair (see Proverbs 14:12).

In Romans 8:1-4, we discover that it is absolutely essential to fix our mind on the Word of God, the Spirit of life-to walk "according to the Spirit":

"There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit."

The Greek word translated "walk" is a comprehensive word, peripateo, that means not only physical walking but how we make due use of opportunities, how we progress, how we conduct ourselves and regulate our lives. To make godly and righteous use of opportunities-knowing the mind of Christ and the will of God in these uncertain times-is crucial for every Believer.

In short, we will have peace and confidence if we live under the direction of God's Spirit. We may choose not to follow His directions, however. How do we make this grievous mistake? Romans 8:6 explains,"For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace."

We err when we set our mind on the flesh-on our human reasonings and speculations. Only the Spirit of God knows the will of God...and He will show us things to come.

Will Faith or Fear Guide Your Life?

We can ponder the conditions of the world and grow faint and fearful-or we can set our focus upon the precious promises of God and "be of good courage" (Joshua 1:9). If we pray for the reality of God's Kingdom to manifest on earth, God will bring revival. Christ calls us to pray for God's Kingdom to manifest in our world today.

Do not complain about current events-pray.
Do not fret over what tomorrow may bring-pray.
Do not dwell on the bad reports-stand on God's promises to you and pray!

Never doubt that God has good plans for your future:

"For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope."-Jeremiah 29:11

This Hebrew word translated "thoughts" is machashabah-a wonderful word that means devices, plans, purposes-and inventions! God is constantly inventing wonderful victories for you in His Spirit. He is planning lavish blessings for you so you may be a blessing to others. He longs to love you extravagantly, imparting to you the knowledge of Himself and the future He holds for you and your loved ones, for the unsaved and His Church...for in Him are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge (see Colossians 2:3).

And this promise of hope is not only for you, but for your children:

"There is hope in your future, says the LORD, That your children shall come back to their own border."-Jeremiah 31:17

What will tomorrow look like if God answers "The Lord's Prayer" that Christ gave us? What will tomorrow look like if we pray, "On earth as it is in Heaven," in every area of our lives and cultures-based on knowing the "things to come" that the Spirit of Truth reveals? We have been given the power in prayer to reshape culture according to God's Kingdom purposes, to change our world dramatically for God's glory.

Read the Gospels. In them we see a model of God's Kingdom manifested in Christ. Jesus Christ is a faith picture of God's Kingdom. Why is this so extraordinary? Why is this truth the cause for eternal rejoicing? Jesus said that we can have the same manifestation of God's power as Jesus Himself had! Didn't He say that as My Father has sent Me, I am sending you?

"So Jesus said to them again, 'Peace to you! As the Father has sent Me, I also send you.'"-John 20:21

This wee word "as" has mighty power. "As" the Father sent Jesus, Jesus is sending us! This Greek word translated as is kathos-and it means according as, just as, even as, in proportion as, in the degree that! In the same proportion as the Father sent Christ, Christ sends us. To the degree that the Father sent Christ, Christ sends us! The same proportion, the same degree, the same as!

"So the disciples went and did as Jesus commanded them."-Matthew 21:6

As it is written, as Jesus told them, as it was in the days of Noah! We must reckon with this small word, as this is what the Lord died to obtain for us-union with Him!

In fact, He actually commanded us to pray, "On earth as it is in Heaven."

Here is a profound truth that we must grasp: the reality God has planned for earth will manifest first in the prayer life of His children. When you hear from God through the Spirit of Truth and then pray His Word, knowing His will, you are impacting the unformed essence of life with the Spirit of God Himself.

"I Have Put My Words in Your Mouth"

Meditate on Jeremiah 1:9-10:

"Then the LORD put forth His hand and touched my mouth, and the LORD said to me: 'Behold, I have put My words in your mouth. See, I have this day set you over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out and to pull down, to destroy and to throw down, to build and to plant.'"

God calls us not only to ask and seek for the revelation of His Word through the Spirit of Truth-but to then pray this Word, decreeing the Word on earth as it is in Heaven.

This is a privilege and blessing beyond compare!

Although many may "declare and decree" as a matter of protocol in prayer, the Word we pray must first become revelatory, bone of our bones and flesh of our flesh, through meditation in the Word and an intimate encounter with the living God. When this Word becomes a living reality, a beloved Presence, the truth of God will move from our head to our heart. We absolutely must mature...from just knowing the Word of God in our head (intellectualizing God's Word) to living God's Word in our heart, being literally impregnated by His divine seed.

Nothing is more critical than God's revelatory Word in this hour. We must receive the rhema Word of God for this time and season, for our loved ones and nations, and speak forth that Word boldly in prayer, nothing wavering, fully persuaded that we are praying His will, that He hears us and that He is answering even as we pray!

The Lord said in Jeremiah that He has "put My words in your mouth." When we speak His Word, we have the same power that spoke the worlds into existence...in our mouths! This Hebrew word for "mouth" (or peh) comes from an extremely powerful root pa'ah-which means to cleave in pieces, break into pieces, to dash and shatter. That is the power resident in our mouth when we speak the rhema Word of God-the revealed Word planted within our spirit by the Spirit of Truth. This cleaving and breaking and shattering through the Word cannot be imitated by mere head-knowledge of the Word.

The enemy knows those who carry His authority and those who do not: "And the evil spirit answered and said, 'Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are you?'" (Acts 19:15). We must be fully persuaded, nothing wavering-and this type of persuasion is not mere mental assent. The words "in your mouth" that shatter and cleave, that bring Heaven to earth, come through the Holy Spirit-through our spirit, not our mind.

Indeed, God is calling us to understand the depths of what it means to see and know the mind of the Spirit, deep unto deep.

"Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us..."-Ephesians 3:20

God is calling us to develop a sanctified imagination, for it is with the "eyes of the heart" or "understanding" that great prayers are conceived. Paul prays that "the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might" (Ephesians 1:18-19).

As we wait upon God in prayer, the Holy Spirit can cause us to visualize the plans and purposes of God-for everything good and holy that we see manifested in people, in churches and in life, is first conceived through an impregnated seed of a rhema Word in the womb of prayer and then birthed through faith, working by love (see Galatians 5:6).

Right Now You Have Resurrection Power Attached to Your Prayer Life!

If you are a Christian, there is a power accompanying your life that is greater than great-the "surpassing greatness of His power." This is not a merely human power, but the actual "strength of His might." Let this take root deep in your heart: the strength of God Almighty, the same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead, is at work within your prayer life! The power of God's might is His resurrection power. What does resurrection mean? It means that things which look dead, smell dead, and act dead can be touched by God and raised to life! God demonstrated this "power toward us who believe" first "in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead, and seated Him at His right hand in the Heavenly places" (Ephesians 1:19-20).

Right now , you have resurrection power attached to your prayer life!

Right now, you can look on things that are absolutely dead and pray forth eternal LIFE!

Right now, the power in us is the same potency God demonstrated when He raised Jesus out of the grave; it is resurrection power.

Your mission? To decree resurrection life into situations that are dead, praying that God's will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.

If the devil challenges your prayer, remind him that you are seated with Christ, "far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come" (Ephesians 1:21).

Not just "above all rule and authority..." but "far above."

Christ's authority is final, far above any other authority-even the evidence we receive from our five physical senses, the nightly news and the bottom line of our bank accounts.

Not only has the Father put "all things in subjection under His feet," but He "gave Him as head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all" (Ephesians 1:22-23). Notice the Lord uses anatomical metaphors to explain the down-line of authority: Christ is the "head" of a "body" that has all things put under its "feet." This is a most profound understanding of our role: what the Head, Christ, has attained, the feet of the Church walk out.

In other words, God has positioned the Church as the living bridge between the terrible conditions on earth and the wonderful solutions from Heaven!

Meditate on this life-changing prayer: "On earth as it is in Heaven." Choose to settle for nothing less than this.

Is this boldness in prayer presumptuous? Prideful? Arrogant?

May it never be! Consider the suffering King of Israel on the Cross, stripped, scourged and crucified. Consider the sacrificial death He died so we could be granted access to His Father and our Father-and it is the"Father's good pleasure to give you the Kingdom" (Luke 12:32). He died to give us abundant life! Contend for abundant life- and abundant souls for the Kingdom-"to win for the Lamb the reward of His sufferings," as the Moravians prayed.

As we truly, passionately and accurately submit to Christ through prayer, through the Word of God and through the Spirit of Truth, the Kingdom of Heaven steadily enters our now-prayed-for world. The key, of course, is to know Christ's Word and obey without hesitation. Remember that it is His Word, not ours. We do not have authority; Christ has authority. What we have is revelation and submission-and as we submit to the Word and persevere in prayer, we can see the future conformed to God's will. Amen!