I’m so grateful for the counsel of Scripture, the perfect will of God and the help and guidance of the Holy Spirit. Each of these blessings are ours through a faith relationship with Jesus Christ.
I am also grateful that our God is personal and He does not hesitate to associate with us. All of us have been saddened by the sudden death of our Associate pastor, David Warbritton Jr. It still doesn’t seem real. In all honesty, I don’t want it to be real. Yet I know it is and now our LORD is asking us to trust Him and follow Him. He sees the whole picture — we don’t.
I shared with you, Sunday, August 4th, that in the early hours of the morning that the Holy Spirit shared with me two wonderful passages of Scripture and made it clear that they weren’t just for me but for our entire church family. Both passages have to do with God’s guidance into the future.
Listen to the promise given to Joshua as he was about to lead the children of Israel into God’s future for them. Deuteronomy 31:8, “The LORD is the One who will go before you. He will be with you; He will not leave you or forsake you. Do not be afraid or discouraged.” (If an angel had come and written that message on a wall, it would not be any more clear to me than it was that Sunday morning.)
The Holy Spirit witnessed to my heart, “Leonard, this is for you and Jubilee.” I wish I could describe to you the peace that flooded my heart when the Holy Spirit reminded me —
· The LORD will go before you.
· He will be with you.
· He will not leave you or forsake you.
· No matter what the future holds, we do not have to be afraid or dismayed.
Joshua, empowered by the Presence and Power of God, would lead his people into their promised land. I am absolutely convinced that the LORD has a ‘promised land’ for Jubilee and I am really looking forward to it.
The other passage, that the Holy Spirit reminded me of, was one He gave me years ago and gave it to me again, Sunday morning, for such a time as this.
It is Isaiah 45:1-7… Folks this is powerful.
“The LORD says this to Cyrus, His anointed, whose right hand I have grasped to subdue nations before him, to disarm kings, to open doors before him and the gates will not be shut I will go before you and level the uneven places; I will shatter the bronze doors and cut the iron bars in two. I will give you the treasures of darkness and riches from secret places, so that you may know that I, YAHWEH, the God of Israel call you by your name.
I will call you by your name. I will call you by your name, because of Jacob My servant and Israel My chosen one. I give a name to you, though you do not know Me. I am YAHWEH, and there is no other; there is no God but Me. I will strengthen you, though you do not know Me, so that all may know from the rising of the sun to its setting that there is no one but Me. I am YAHWEH, and there is no other. I form light and create darkness. I make success and create disaster; I YAHWEH, do all these things.”
Not only was this God’s word to Cyrus but I know, in my heart, that the LORD gave this passage to me and Jubilee on Sunday, August 4th about 5:00 AM. I want you to accept it, embrace it and trust God for it to come to pass.
This passage was written at least 140 years before it was fulfilled. God was letting Cyrus know how He was planning to use Him as His agent.
God referred to Cyrus as His anointed. This man was commissioned by God to function as a royal deliverer of His people. I believe God has commissioned Jubilee to serve him in reaching lost people with the good news of His love and that Christ gave His life to redeem and reconcile people back to God.
God told Cyrus, “…whose right hand I have grasped…” This is so exciting. It is a picture of Divine favor. It speaks of commissioning, guidance, and divine enabling with skill. I want God to take my hand as a pastor and your hands as a church and to lead us on to accomplish all that He has in mind for us.
* Please notice in these verses how many times God says, “I WILL” do certain things for His people as He leads us forward to accomplish great things for His glory and their (own) good.
I am convinced that God wants to reveal Himself to us individually and as a church, in ways beyond what we can imagine.
In Isaiah 45:5, He declares “I am YAHWEH, and there is no other; there is no God but Me. I will strengthen you, though you do not know Me.”
Folks, from the rising of the sun to its setting, He is God in control of all things. He says in verse 7, “I form light and create darkness, I make success and create disaster; I YAHWEH, do all these things.”
I believe God wants each of us and Jubilee to know Him personally, more deeply and passionately than ever before. The mighty acts that He declares He will do, will be to draw us into the most trusting intimacy possible. Do you desire to know him more deeply than you do at the present time? I do.
In Isaiah 55, our God issues a very simple invitation, “Come.” “Come, everyone who is thirsty, come to the waters; and you without money come buy and eat. Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost!” (vs. 1) In verses 2 and 3 He says, “come and listen.” God wants to reveal Himself to us, but we must come and when we come, He wants us to listen. Is God speaking to you? Are you listening to what He is saying?
I wonder what God would reveal to us if we would just come to Him and listen to Him and obey Him?
In Isaiah 55:6 we read, “Seek the LORD while He may be found, call to Him while He is near.”
Folks, God is not lost. He can be found and wants to be found and will be found as we seek Him, with all our heart, and turn from all that grieves and hinders Him. To call upon the LORD is to acknowledge who He is and worship Him.
In Psalm 105:1-5 we are admonished to acknowledge God’s faithfulness to us. “Give thanks to YAHWEH, call on His name; proclaim His deeds among the peoples. Sing to Him, sing praise to Him; tell about His wonderful works! Honor His Holy name; let the hearts of those who seek YAHWEH rejoice. Search for the LORD and for His strength; seek His face always. Remember the wonderful works He has done, His wonders, and the judgments, He has pronounced.”
To experience and enjoy God the way these passages indicate, we can call for commitment, determination, persistence in spiritual concern and a longing for the Lord’s presence and fellowship.
Folks, I do not believe Pastor Dave’s passing is a set-back but a set-up by God to meet Him and see Him do more than we can ask or imagine, according to His mighty power (Ephesians 3:20). I believe our best days are just before us as we follow Him.
To Him be the glory,