Summary: Four ways to receive God's blessings
“The God who Loves to Bless”
“Blessed are all who fear the Lord, who walk in obedience to him.
You will eat the fruit of your labor; blessings and prosperity will be yours.
Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house; your children will be like olive shoots around your table. Yes, this will be the blessing for the man who fears the Lord. May the Lord bless you from Zion; may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem all the days of your life. May you live to see your children’s children—
peace be on Israel.”
This Scripture has a very special meaning for me. It was 1974 and I was a senior at Nazarene Bible College. I was in the basement of one of the buildings where the print shop was located and I was working on the school paper. I was editor of the “Pikes Peek” and had a deadline to meet so I was busy with that. Then the phone rang and the one of the ladies in the office said that they had just taken my wife to the hospital. I rushed over there as quickly as I could and found out my wife and baby were in danger of dying. I was so worried and scared but my prayers didn’t seem to reach heaven. Late that night, exhausted, I went home – feeling very alone and powerless. As was my habit, before getting into bed, I got my Bible out and began to read. Psalm 128 was my Scripture reading.
Don’t you know the Holy Spirit descended on me as I read His words to me, “You wife will be like a fruitful vine!” Your children will be like olive shoots!” “You will live to see your children’s children!”
I am not one to have shouting spells but I think I came pretty close to it. God gave me the assurance that my wife and baby would be okay – and they were. My faith was tested in the next few weeks as Julie got worse – not better. But my faith held unwaveringly and through a minor miracle of her regular doctor going on vacation, God sent just the right person to make the necessary decisions to save their lives. And my faith was rewarded as God kept His Word to me.
This morning I want to focus on those first two verses.
“Blessed are all who fear the Lord, who walk in obedience to him. You will eat the fruit of your labor; blessings and prosperity will be yours.”
Through the years I have come to know God better and better and the more I know Him the more I realize just how good He is. In fact, I have found that He alone is good – as Jesus said. More than that I have come to realize that God is a God who loves to bless. He is not far off in the outer reaches of space -uncaring and unfeeling to our pain as some believe. He is always right with us ready and willing to shower us with his blessings.
This morning I want to talk about four areas that I have received God’s blessings and I want you to be blessed in them as well. They are Faith, Finances, Family and Friendships.
Faith is probably the key to all the rest of God blessings. God said,
“And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” Hebrews 11:6
You can’t please God without faith. But faith is a choice. Some put their faith in Buddha or Allah or Evolution or themselves or some other thing. Everyone puts their faith in something or someone and thereby they bet – not only their lives - but their eternal destiny that they are correct. I choose to place by faith in Jesus, Creator of Heaven and Earth. I believe that He exists and I believe He will reward me for earnestly seeking Him.
If we want God’s spiritual blessings we need to believe in Him and walk in faith and obedience. The Word says,
“and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him.” Hebrews 5:9
“Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:12
“My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish…” John 10:27-28
The key to God’s blessings is Faith in Him expressed through obedience. As a parent, have you ever rewarded disobedience? Probably not. At least I hope not. That reinforces bad behavior. You don’t reward rebellion. If you are not experiencing God’s blessings in your life you need to inspect your relationship for rebellion and/or neglect. Neglect is rebellion, too. We are commanded to seek and love and pursue God. When blessings dry up - do a spiritual inventory. If there is anything between you and God – get rid of it! If there is neglect - renew your love by pursuing the Savior.