Scripture Reference: Jeremiah 29: 1-14 NIV
1. Align yourself with people who are going somewhere.
- Have you ever heard the saying “Show me your friends and I will tell you who you are”. Do not align yourself with person’s or people who are not going anywhere you will inherit their bad habits
2. Apply (transfer) the same faith that gave you some measure of success to more difficult situations.
- There were false prophets who prophesied to the people that their exile would come to an end. Jeremiah 29:10 says: “This is what the Lord says: “When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will come to you and fulfill my good promise to bring you back to this place….“” The People had to wait 70 years for the promise to be fulfilled for them to return to Jerusalem. It was during these 70 long years that they would have to exercise the faith learned in Jerusalem to carry them through the 70 years of exile in Babylon.
3. Plan for the future, but live in the present (moment)!
- In Jeremiah 29: 4-7 the Lord instructed the people while in exile To LIVE!!! Yes live… While they were in exile and waited for their time in exile to end, they were to prosper and live. The Lord instructed them to marry, build homes, farm on the land, and pray for the prosperity of BABYLON so that get this… They can also prosper! Yes Babylon was not their homes, Yes they longed for the promises of Jerusalem, but their current situation didn’t constitute cause for complete despair. Because while they were yet in Babylon they could still prosper they could live in the present while planning for the future.
- Don’t forget to enjoy Today while still planning for Tomorrow! Tomorrow is promised to no one. Make the best of today!
4. Pray for a discerning spirit to be able to determine who is for you, and who is against you.
- In Point 1, I stated that “we need to align ourselves with persons that are going somewhere”. Well how are we to determine those that are really moving in a direction that is pleasing to God and can help us to do the same? we need a discerning spirit. And when the Lord declares that this situation, person or event is not for you… LISTEN!!
- In Jeremiah 29: 8-9 the Lord issues a strong warning to his people in exile. He warns them of those claiming to be sent by him. The Lord declared that “They are prophesying lies to you in my name. I have not sent them.” How are we to determine if those who say they are for us, are really “for us”? Simple we need to pray for a discerning spirit!
5. Let patience guide you into the promise of God.
- This point is one of the most difficult of all the points to execute, because it requires patience!!! We have already established that there were false prophets preaching that the exile would end before the 70 years, we also know that Babylon was not the people of God’s home, and we know that they are in exile. Yet they still had to go through the 70 years! It is only after the 70 years has passed that they that remain, and their children and their children’s children, can enter into the promise of God. (Jeremiah 29:10 “This is what the Lord says: “When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will come to you and fulfill my good promise to bring you back to this place). The Promise of God was contingent on waiting the 70 years in exile… Can anyone say Patience?
6. Pray beyond your circle of influence.
- Jeremiah 29:7 states “Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.” We now know that the Lord wanted his people to live and prosper while in Babylon; but what he was also instructing them to do is pray beyond their circle of influence. in other words don’t just pray for the things that make you feel good. Expand your prayers. It is easy to pray for Jerusalem, it is easy to pray for your children we love them. But pray for the city in which we are exiled! This sounds counterintuitive. Don’t I want Babylon to be destroyed so that I can return home? Shouldn’t I expect my enemies to fall and you Lord make me prosperous? NO says the Lord… Pray for Babylon this is where you are instructed to Live. Therefore, if Babylon prospers you to shall prosper! So Pray beyond your circle of influence!
I would love to read how this scripture and these strategies are helping you throughout your walk with Christ! Are there other strategies that the scripture has revealed to you? Comment below