"Where there is no prophecy the people cast off restraint, but blessed is he who keeps the law" (Prov. 29:18, RSV).
Prophecy provides revelation of the purposes of God. It is the revealed will of God for your life. "Where there is no prophecy the people cast off restraint." "Casting off restraint" is letting go of your goals and focus in life. You become passionless, living an undisciplined, mediocre life. Without prophetic revelation, we lose a grip on life and become like a wild person. Without prophecy, we become like savages, never grasping the potential God has placed within us. Prophecy can inspire within us a sense of purpose that brings focus, determination and discipline into our lives.
The prophetic word will align our lives with the law, which is the decree of God. Without prophetic vision, we will be untrained in the ways of God, living our lives without the discipline of God.
We are called to be disciples of Christ. A disciple is a disciplined learner. The prophetic ministry will equip you with the advantage of living under the discipline of God.
The disadvantage of not having prophecy released in your life is that you will live your life in a vacuum. One translation of Proverbs 29:18 states, "Without prophetic vision the people run wild" (GW). In other words, they live life taking risks with no control or direction, leaving them uncultivated, out of rhythm and out of reason.
The prophetic word brings order and structure to your life. God wants your life to mean something—your money, your efforts. The prophetic word of God causes you to live your life for something greater than yourself.
Life and time are speeding along so fast for all of us. We should be able to look back over our lives and say that we have accomplished the purpose God created us for. We should want to be able to confidently say, "I was here."
The prophetic word will allow you to live for eternal purpose and not the temporal. It changes your value system. Once the revealed purpose of the Lord is known, you set your affections on things above, transcending this temporal world. There are people who live their lives never knowing or obeying the prophetic purpose of God. The graveyard is one of the richest places in the earth. People live and die on the earth with so much potential for greatness. They never impact the world around them.
Don't let your gravestone epitaph read: "It was like they were never here." "They settled for too little." "They never discovered the riches and treasures that were inside of them." "They lived for the temporal, fading purposes, never living out God's eternal purposes."
Life before Christ can be so devastating and confusing. It's like having the wind knocked out of you. The prophetic word provides spiritual oxygen for life and destiny. Prophecy is the breath of life being released back into you. When God breathed into Adam, He released life and prophetic purpose into him. We must understand that God will always give us pictures, maps and directions to show us how we should be living our lives. His will for our lives is knowable. This is revealed by prophecy. Everything
in the earth is trying to take us away from the original purposes of God for our lives. It dangles every kind of glitter in front of us. Its ultimate goal is to lead us down paths of destruction.
God, in His love and mercy, sends prophets and prophetic people with insight and direction. We must then make a decision to follow and align our lives with the revealed prophetic word. We must go to the cross. I am not talking about suffering, but rather where your desires are in conflict with God's desires—you must be willing to put those
desires to death on the cross.
The moment you choose to align your life with the prophetic purpose of God, the Lord is watching and sends every resource you need to accomplish His prophetic purpose in your life. You're not in this world by chance. Embrace the prophetic anointing that gives you an advantage to live a rich and full life.
Michelle McClain serves as director of prayer ministry on the staff of Crusaders Church under the leadership of Apostle John Eckhardt. She is also one of the house prophets and apostolic team leaders at Crusaders Church in Chicago. She is the author of The Prophetic Advantage, from which this article was excerpted.