Hello Faith Partner:
Can you believe it is already 2017? It seems like we just turned the page into 2016; a time where God showed Himself faithful throughout the year. I am sure that you are thankful for all of God’s blessings and favor throughout last year while at the same time looking forward to all He has purposed for your life in the 12 months ahead. Remember, He knows the thoughts and plans He has for you, thoughts of peace and not evil, to give you hope and a future. (Jeremiah 29:11)
As I consider the year that lies ahead, I am reminded of Paul’s letter to the church at Philippi; it reads like this, “I’m off and running, and I’m not turning back. So let’s keep focused on that goal, those of us who want everything God has for us.” Philippians 3:14-15 (MSG) I believe this will be the Year of More. More of His presence, more of His power, more of His provisions, more of His favor and more manifestation in and on the Body of Christ. Shout, “Life more abundant for me!”
So many people are consumed by what is going on in the world to the point of being frightened. While I am concerned, I refuse to be consumed by political or world affairs as long as I serve the King of kings and Lord of lords. Do you recall in Exodus when there was darkness in Egypt yet there was light in Goshen where God’s people were living? (Exodus 10:21-22) Egypt is a type of the world’s system and just as there is darkness today in that system God is still ever present and protecting His people. That is you and I! Jesus said in John 10:10, “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” Notice He said I came that you may have life: not just merely exist, barely make it, be normal or average, sick all the time, broke or in lack, but He said that you may have life more abundantly! The word “abundantly” used here means “over and above, more than is necessary, something further, extraordinary, superior, surpassing, uncommon, more remarkable, more excellent, and overflowing.” In other words, God not only gives life, but He maximizes that life to the point where it is overflowing!
The Greek word translated “life” as used in John 10:10 is zoe and it means “life in the absolute sense, life as God has it”. Everyone who is breathing has life in the sense of physical existence, but only those who receive Jesus can experience life as God intended. Jesus came not only to save people from the torment of eternal hell, but also to offer this zoe life, or God-kind of life, in abundance. The life of God is not awaiting people in heaven, but is the present possession available to all born-again believers right now.
You must understand, without Jesus we have NO life! Jesus came to redeem us from spiritual death and to give us eternal life through His finished work on the cross. The scripture says, “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 6:23, (KJV) When we receive Jesus Christ, we are brought into eternal life through Him. Without Jesus there is no life. We may walk, breathe, eat and talk, living physically but zoe life will elude us as long as we are separated from God. Being separated from the Giver of Life, the Sustainer of Life, the Provider of Life equates to no life.
Why am I revisiting such a fundamental truth as we enter 2017? God wants to remind us of our Source as we take off running pursuing all that He has predestined in this “Year of More”. He wants us to refocus and recalibrate; remembering He is the Goal Setter, the Vision Giver and the Victory Obtainer!
This life you are called to seek, zoe life, is obtained by losing your natural life. In Matthew 16:24-25, “… Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.” When you line your thoughts, emotions, and actions up with the instructions of God’s Word, then zoe life manifest in your bodies and souls as well. So in your refocusing and recalibrating look at, evaluate, and allow Holy Spirit to speak to you concerning your thoughts, emotions and actions. And may I encourage you to look especially at areas where your “unconditional love” has taken a hit. (1John 3:14 NIV) Where there is a need to adjust or purge, do so quickly: God needs you to be fully fit, ready and not weighted down.
Everything God has set for you to accomplish in 2017 is a victory waiting to manifest. Remember the Apostle Paul’s words in Ephesians 3:20 (AMP), “Now to Him who is able to [carry out His purpose and] do superabundantly more than all that we dare ask or think [infinitely beyond our greatest prayers, hopes, or dreams], according to His power that is at work within us.” God’s Power is at work in you so run forward, no turning back, and keep your focus on the goal!
Janice and I are grateful for you and your commitment to God and this ministry. It blesses us to hear of the great things you are doing. We are grateful for your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all God’s people. We have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in our prayers as we ask God to give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation so you will know Him better. (Ephesians 1:15-17)
Your Partner and Friend,
Richard B. Peoples, Sr.
Register For Equip 2017 – Leadership Impartation
Building Leaders for Church Growth & City Reach
January 26 – 28, 2017
Please call 706-792- 9972 if you plan to attend.