2 Kings 2:9-10 “And it came to pass, when they were gone over, that Elijah said unto Elisha, Ask what I shall do for thee, before I be taken away from thee. And Elisha said, I pray thee, let a double portion of thy spirit be upon me. 10 And he said, Thou hast asked a hard thing: nevertheless, if thou see me when I am taken from thee, it shall be so unto thee; but if not, it shall not be so.”
It was a hard thing Elisha asked, but Elijah’s reply, ‘If you see me when I’m taken…’ Another translation of that is, ‘If you can see the way I see…’
How does Elijah (and Elisha) ‘see’? Does that differ from the way you see? How?
Eph 3:20 “Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.”
Faith is like a muscle. It can be strengthened and grow. It can also deteriorate. It depends on how often you use it and how you exercise it. Faith is a buildable, expandable, measurable muscle.
There is a predictable pattern God uses to build your faith. If you understand it, you can cooperate with God to grow your faith.
In Mark there’s a story where a man asks, ‘If you will…’
If you want to bother Jesus, question His ability. Don’t ask God if He remembers you. That is a doubt-centered prayer.
Anything is possible if a person believes.
What is ‘faith’? Hebrews 11:1 “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” How would you define faith in your own words?
It starts in the vision. The first thing God does is give you is a vision or a dream of how He wants to use you to affect the world. That’s how you begin to believe. You see yourself in a better place and trust God to bring you there and you pursue after it. You must have a God-sized vision. He has a plan and a dream He wants to give you.
God gave Noah a word about rain and told him to build a boat. Noah had never seen rain before. God gave Abraham a dream of children using sand and stars. These were God-sized visions.
How do you know your dream came from God? If what God has given you is too big for you, then it’s probably from God.
Do you have any God-sized dreams? Are you pursuing them? What, if anything, is standing in your way?
Learn to see yourself as God sees you. Joy comes from God. You need God-sized vision to see the crazy plans He has for you. Whatever stands in the way is not going to end the dream. It strengthens it instead, and builds faith.
The Bible says, Ephesians 1:19 “And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power,”
Joseph knew God had sent those dreams to him. He continued to trust God even from prison. Nehemiah knew he would be strengthened to build a wall around Jerusalem. When you see what God wants to do for you and through you, you will see the circumstances around you in a different way.
Begin with the end in mind. If you start with the end in mind, you’ll have the mindset to work towards that.
What is in your future that God wants to do in your life? If you don’t know that, you are living beneath your privileges God has for you.
God always had a plan with the end in mind. It didn’t frustrate His plans that Cain killed Able. God already knew the end from the beginning. ‘When you see like I see, then you can have a double portion.’
When you start to expand your vision, you will expand the amount of miraculous activity in your life.
How is your faith? Do you see yourself the way God sees you?
If God gives you a vision, you have to have faith and push and press toward that vision. ‘They that sit in darkness will suddenly have a great light.’ It’s hard to walk, to run, to fly, but God gives you strength. ‘Thy word is a light unto my feet and a light unto my path.’ Your God-sized vision affects everything in your life. Peter said, ‘This is that…’ Acts 2:17 “And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:”
In receiving the Life of God, you’ve got to see things as God sees them. We believe in Jesus, we belong to Jesus, we become like Jesus. You must have VISION, goals, grit. God loves you just as you are, but He wants to take you where you’re not.
Sometimes, God leads us in spite of us. God spoke to Samson and his parents and gave them a vision. Samson messed up what God had for him. When God looked at the distress of Samson’s parents, they didn’t know that this was of the Lord to deliver Israel. God can use disaster to work His plan. Open your eyes that even now He has a plan.
Jesus wept not because He loved Lazarus so much. He wept because of the people’s lack of faith. He didn’t have a problem with the people asking for things, He had a problem with their lack of faith. ‘God if you have just done it differently….’ That is not pleasing to God.
Belonging to Jesus is not just an action, it’s a mentality.
If you can touch someone’s mind, you can touch their actions. You’ve got to have your mind renewed. A different person (a new creation) thinks differently.
The pinky toe realizes, ‘Hey, I’m the body.’ The wave realizes, ‘Hey, I’m the ocean.’
When you see that for yourself, you can walk and apply those Scriptures to your life.
2 Cor 5:17 “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”
There is a disconnect in what we read in Scripture and how we live our lives. Read Scripture and realize, ‘Hey, that’s mine!’ ‘Hey, that promise is for me!’ ‘Hey, God is speaking about me!’
What does that ‘new creature’ (new you) look like? How does God see you? How is that different from the way you see yourself? What God-sized dream has He given you?
Let go of those things that seem so important, but aren’t really. You don’t need to have a bad day because of bad circumstances.
Rev 7:9 “After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;”
God showed John a great multitude. It was amazing. They were all mixed together. That is a picture of the end right there. The end of the story is standing around the throne of God worshipping.
Rev 7:10-12 “And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb. 11 And all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders and the four beasts, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God, 12 Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen.”
Nehemiah’s vision started with bad news. But, bad news for a dreamer is not a barrier or obstacle. It’s more like a springboard.
Bad news is like a tiny tissue all up in your face (your situation). You can’t see around it because it covers your eyes. Blow it off. God is greater and has a plan.
God gave Nehemiah resources and made a way and the wall got built. God led him every step of the way. He had timber, stone, everything he needed. Nehemiah even had favor from the king of Babylon.
Obstacles have a purpose. God will use them to work out His way. If you want provision, you need vision. You need a God-sized vision. Stretch your faith. Talk about your vision and write about it. Practice living it. No part of the journey is wasted once you taste even the possibility of the meaning enfolded in your life. There’s no going back. Learning cannot be undone.
What obstacles are standing in the way of the dream God has given you? What do you need to do to overcome them?
Eph 1:18-19 “The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, 19 And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power,”
When you realize the Spiritual vision, you’ll never be the same.
You must have the discipline to walk in what God has for you. Don’t let your lack of faith keep you away from the vision He has for you.
What God-sized vision or dream do you have? What is holding you back from pursuing it?
This Bible Study excerpted from a sermon preached by Pastor Anthony LoCascio.
For the full YouTube audio/video, click here.
If you are looking for an Apostolic Pentecostal church and are in the Chicagoland area, come check out The Life Church located at 3030 Central Road in Glenview, IL. Services are Sundays at 1pm and Wednesdays at 7pm. We would love to see you there!