God said He has good plans for you—plans to prosper you, not harm you. Have you ever thought about what it means to prosper?
“For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11 NIV).
WHAT IS PROVISION?
First, it’s essential to understand that provision and prosperity are different. Provision is the substance to supply or fulfill a need. In our Western culture, we often equate provision to dollars and cents with dead presidents on them; however, in God’s economy, provision can come in many forms.
God’s provision goes beyond material possessions and finances. He loves us so much that He longs to supply ALL our needs—emotionally, financially, mentally, physically, and spiritually. The Apostle Paul wrote, “And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19 NIV). All means all. If God never intended to provide for all our needs, He would not have revealed Himself in many ways.
WHAT IS PROSPERITY?
If provision is having enough, then what is prosperity? What does it mean to prosper?
Prosperity is a biblical word. “The LORD will grant you ABUNDANT PROSPERITY—in the fruit of your womb, the young of your livestock and the crops of your ground—in the land he swore to your forefathers to give you” (Deuteronomy 28:11 NIV).
In its various tenses, the word PROSPER appears 90 times in scripture. It means to have continued success, to thrive, grow, flourish, and to have wealth and good fortune.
Most people want to prosper, but they don’t know how. The truth is that people often know the steps to follow, and they’ve even taken a few, but for them, it’s not “working.” Therefore, they strive to have more “faith.” They pray “harder.” Unfortunately, they don’t know that it’s not a faith issue. The hindrance to their breakthrough could be the way they’re thinking!
CAN YOU SEE IT?
If your thoughts veer to lack and scarcity, you will expect to receive lack and scarcity. What you think about reveals what you believe. What you believe is what you will receive. Why? Because it’s what you can see; it’s the picture in your mind. If you can’t picture a six-figure income, at best, you’ve limited yourself to earning $99,999.
You need to be able to SEE it to receive it. This is why we walk by FAITH and not by sight. Our faith becomes our vision to receive in the natural what we can already conceive (and see) in the spiritual. This is why without vision, people perish (Proverbs 29:18). Unless you can envision a great future, regardless of your past, you will not be able to plan for such a future. You cannot have a definitive strategy for obtaining something you cannot foresee.
People can desire to prosper, but unless they expect prosperity and do the things necessary to ensure success, their desires are only whims and fantasies. Desire doesn’t produce results—well-executed plans and strategies produce results.
MAKE A PLAN
Remember, God knows the plans He has for you. His thoughts and His intentions toward you are GOOD! And I want to let you in on a secret…God is NOT hiding His plans for you from you. Most of the time, the plans and strategies the Lord has to prosper you are hidden in plain sight.
They are not hidden FROM you; they are hidden FOR you, and God gives you the key to discovering the plans and strategies to help you prosper in Jeremiah 29.
“Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart” (Jeremiah 29:12-13 NIV).
Often your plan is hidden in plain sight. The key to your prosperity is already within reach. God will give you the favor you need. God will provide you with wisdom, but you have to SEEK HIM. You have to ask Him, and then you have to EXPECT an answer!
The Bible clearly states that God gives man the power to get or create wealth (Deuteronomy 8:18). Contrary to some Christians’ beliefs, money isn’t going to just “appear.” While there is the occasional unexpected check in the mail, that one check will not sustain you. God wants to give you the wisdom and strategies to create wealth that will last for generations beyond you.
So, the question is…what’s in your hand?
- What have you been trained to do?
- What are you passionate about?
- What do you enjoy doing?
- What need does someone else have that you can fulfill?
Think about it. Multiple companies now make money by simply going around town, picking up people’s take-out orders, and delivering them to their door or place of business. God enabled someone to see a need and gave them an idea of how to fulfill it.
You may already have a ton of ideas, but ideas won’t bring you provision without action. Faith requires action. When you begin to take that idea and create a plan to bring that idea to life, you’ll experience God’s hand of blessing. God will give you favor as you take action.
Can you SEE it? Can you see your idea working? Can you see your concept bringing in extra income? You might not be able to quit your day job immediately, but as you TRUST God and continue to SEEK Him for wisdom and instructions, He will make your way PROSPEROUS.