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The Favor Factor
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Have you realized yet you are distinctive, peculiar, called out and favored of God just because you are Christian. The Apostle Peter put it like this, "But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. (1 Peter 2:9)
Years ago, I was watching a Christian program, probably the Richard Roberts Show or a televised event at Oral Roberts University campus. It was a normal Christian program with all the familiar faces of Christian programming during that time. What caught my attention and moved me was what happened at the end of the show; maybe you saw it too. They were honoring Dr. Oral Roberts and his wife Evelyn Roberts.
By the Holy Spirit it seemed the show took an unplanned turn. Pastors, ministers and ministry couples started coming up to Dr. Roberts, some on their knees in tears repenting for speaking against him in the past. It got to be quite a line of weeping people; they were all saying basically the same thing, "Please forgive me for persecuting you." Dr. Roberts would say to each one, "It's already done. I've forgiven you. I forgave you a long time ago."
They were repenting for persecuting him when he made statements that not many if anyone understood. "He believed and said, "If I don't raise 8 million dollars by March 31st, God will take me home." (My wife/editor and I were debating about whether to use this story. For we carefully consider each article prepared for the people of God. We looked at a calendar and noticed it was March 31st, that was one of our little confirmations.)
Back to the story, after all was said and done, it's recorded that he didn't raise 8 million dollars by March 31st but 9 million dollars. Nevertheless, when he made those statements the Media and the Church gave him such a hard time, even ridiculed him to scorn.
Before I saw this program, I knew nothing about Dr. Roberts. But this particular scene never left my memory. So never in my wildest dreams did I imagine I would get the opportunity to meet and talk with Dr. Roberts. Yet, some years back I did. My wife and I hosted him as armorbearers on one of his trips to speak at our church.
At the airport Earma and I were sitting with the Roberts waiting on a plane, he said we could ask him questions. One of my questions was, "Do you have any very close friends." He said, "Throughout my life I've had only a couple of close friends and currently I have none." Then we talked about the televised event where the Church was repenting to him over persecuting him. He said he remembered it like it was yesterday.
You might be wondering why I shared this story. Well, it has to do with my reason for asking the question. By the way, I wasn't surprised by his answer. Not implying I'm anywhere near Dr. Robert's level, but I know the mantle and the favor that's on my life and what it requires to walk in it. I know I don't have many close friends. We have hundreds of friends but no David and Jonathan relationships in our life.
I've learned the favor of God is no lemon meringue pie; yes it is a powerful thing to have favor operating in your life but it's not always easy. Dr. Roberts was obviously a man of distinction and had the favor of God on his life. Taking example from his life, my life and I suspect yours as well, the favor of God distinguishes you, separates and empowers you to do whatever our Father God has called you to do.
Unmerited grace is given in the favor from God. This favor graces you with the power and presence of God; it is a walk of faith, humility and blessing. Walking in God's favor, you live a life of distinction and separation, a special vessel kind of life. (2 Ti. 2:20,21) If you think about it or have observed it, most of the great men and women of God have a life of separation and distinction.
So, you could say this is a distinction thing that God does with his people that are called by his purpose, according to his favor. Look at the distinction Abraham received after being called and obeying moving into a new land. Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego lived a life of distinction. Moses was separated as a child to survive the slaughter of the enemy and then he was called to lead a people out of bondage. I could name many more. The favor of God brings a life of distinction to the individual; blessings come with this distinctive life style but please notice sacrifice comes with it as well.
Excerpted from Helps Ministry Magazine, The Favor Factor by Rev. Varn Brown, Sr.
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Thank you for your integrity in this matter.
Helping leaders and supporters in the local church,
Varn and Earma Brown