Devotionals

This Solid Foundation Gives You What Good Intentions Never Could

The following statement will sound utterly misguided to many, but sometimes good intentions and a right heart are not enough. 

Obviously, who you are on the inside is vital. The essence of your soul affects so many other things in your life. I would never want to minimize that.
 
Nevertheless, your actions and responses will ultimately have as much of a bearing on your future as anything else.

What you do can often be as significant as what you feel.

Allow me to share a story from the Old Testament that illustrates this.

Asa, descending from the Davidic line, was the third king of Judah. In many ways, he could be described as a good man who sincerely loved the Lord.

"Asa did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, just as his father David had done. ... Asa's heart was wholly devoted to the Lord all his days" (1 Kin. 15:11, 14).

Even though Asa sincerely wanted the things of God, there was a tragic weakness in his life. This breakdown showed itself in three specific areas:

1. A hesitancy to remove the wicked things

 
God called Asa to remove the idols and the wicked things that were gripping the hearts of Judah. He made progress in this, even removing the unrighteous things from his own home. Yet Asa didn't go all the way. Unwilling to rock the boat, he decided to ignore some of what was going on.

"But they did not remove the high places from Israel. Nevertheless the heart of Asa was wholly committed all his days" (2 Chron. 15:17).

Asa's love for the Lord was not in question, but sadly, he wasn't willing to completely uproot what was shaping the attitude and value systems of his nation.

2. Improper relationships

In the midst of everything else, Asa also gave in to people in whom he should never have placed his trust. 

Earlier in his reign, an invasion by Ethiopia threatened Judah's existence. Fortunately, Asa kept his eyes on God. The marauding forces were crippled as the Lord stepped into the middle of this tumultuous situation. In this instance, everything worked out well for Asa and his people.

However, because of a fear of man, Asa would later come into an ill-advised alliance with the armies of Aram—one of Judah's greatest enemies. This improper agreement would drastically hinder the purposes of God and contribute to countless problems.

Then Asa removed silver and gold from the storehouses of the house of the Lord and palace of the king, and he sent it to Ben-Hadad king of Aram in Syria, who lived in Damascus, saying, "There is a covenant between me and you ... And at that time Hanani the seer came to King Asa of Judah saying, "Because you depended on the king of Aram and did not depend on the Lord your God, therefore the army of the king of Aram escaped from your hand. Were not the Cushites and Libyans a very large army with chariots and horses, but when you depended on the Lord, He gave them to your hand. For the eyes of the Lord move about on all the earth to strengthen the heart that is completely toward Him. You have acted foolishly in this, and from this point forward you will have wars (2 Chron. 16:2-4, 7-9). 

I know that many don't believe this, but the right kind of people operating in the wrong kind of relationships could find themselves entangled in inexplicable issues.

3. A struggle to trust in the power of the Lord


Later in his reign, Asa, the good-hearted king, had to face his greatest battle. He was blindsided with a terminal affliction that gripped his feet. Rather than placing his confidence in the power of the Lord, like Hezekiah (2 Kings 20), he embraced the feeble approach of the masses. Multitudes consulted witch doctors and magicians, and the good-intentioned Asa passively followed suit.

In the thirty-ninth year of the reign of Asa, he had a sickness in his feet until his sickness became grave. Even in his disease he did not seek after the Lord, but the physicians. So Asa slept with his fathers; he died in the forty-first year of his reign(2 Chron. 16:12-13).

Rather than relying on the supernatural outworking of God, Asa trusted in the forms, structures and limited means of men. Although he knew better, he embraced a pathway that led to destruction.

Conclusion
 
Like many of us, Asa was rather apprehensive as he faced challenging situations. He meant well, but when push came to shove, he often took the easy way out. Although he loved the Lord, he refused to boldly advance with confidence and faith.

In a pivotal early encounter, God had graciously exposed Asa's weaknesses. He sent the prophet Hanani to speak to him and guide him in the right direction:

"Listen to me, Asa! he shouted. "Listen, all you people of Judah and Benjamin! The Lord will stay with you as long as you stay with him! Whenever you seek him, you will find him. But if you abandon him, he will abandon you. ... But you, be strong and do not let your hands be weak, for your work shall be rewarded!" (2 Chron. 15:2, 7, NLT).

God is still saying, "Be strong and don't let your hands be weak." He wants us to remember that destinies are established on more than well-meaning intentions. Despite what all the blogs, books, and songs are boldly proclaiming, it's never only a matter of the heart.

Whenever a good man or woman's hands are weak, the future remains uncertain. {eoa}

J.D. King, director of the World Revival Network and co-pastor at World Revival Church, is writing Regeneration: Healing in the History of Christianity. King is a sought-after speaker, writer and author.

  • Roadblock

    6 Roadblocks That Will Stop Your Spiritual Growth

    God wants you to grow in your faith, but many of us get stuck along the way.

  • 2017 is the year that swords will clash.

    Prophetic Word: 2017 Will Bring a Clashing of Heaven and Hell

    "This is a time to cross over and not pull back."

  • Inner Healing Is the Fruit of the Spirit

    Inner Healing Is the Fruit of the Spirit

    I have been puzzled about the subject of inner healing for some time.

  • Bishop Eddie Long died at 63.

    Bishop Eddie Long Dead at 63

    "Although his transition leaves a void for those of us who loved him dearly, we can celebrate ...

  • The devil will try to silence you in any way he can. Don't give him the satisfaction.

    Satan's 2 Most Potent Lies to Render You Ineffective

    There's something in you so powerful that Satan doesn't want it out. Kyle Winkler reveals ...

  • Cindy Jacobs

    2017: Year of the Breakthrough

    "There will be a significant increase in miracles and signs and wonders."

  • Foot washing

    Shaking the Gates of Hell With a Basin of Water and a Towel

    "When I saw His foot, I knew He had come to take back territory the enemy had stolen from His ...

  • Growing relationship

    2017 Prophetic Word: The Supernatural Key to Growing Your Relationship With God

    It's vital that we understand what comes from God and what comes from the devil.

  • Are you willing to volunteer for God's offensive army?

    Prophetic Word: Preparing for God's World War 3

    God is searching for soldiers of the cross who are willing to volunteer for His offensive army.

  • Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Follow God on the most fulfilling journey of your life with Encounter the Holy Spirit! Break away from past hurts and press into the One who wants a personal encounter with you.

  • Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Reach your full potential and be led by His Spirit. In His Presence takes you to a deeper understanding of who God is and how he communicates with us.

  • Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Receive the power and gifts that come through the Holy Spirit Baptism. Don’t go empty-handed; accept all that He has for you! His power is available to those who ask.

  • Put on the Full Armor of God

    Put on the Full Armor of God

    Break every stronghold with the power of the Holy Spirit. Use the power of your tongue to declare and decree the Word of God. Witness heaven move on your behalf.

Use Desktop Layout
Charisma Magazine — Empowering believers for life in the Spirit