A Family Who Prays Believes the Impossible

Every Wednesday morning at 5:00 a.m. a group of five family members gets on a conference call to pray for their immediate and extended family. These five dare to believe that their prayers can go against history, generational inheritance, inbred traits and characteristics, and genetic disorders. These five believe that they can put a stop to the self-fulfilling prophecies that operate in their family members’ lives. They dare to believe the impossible.

What makes them think that the course of history, or even the future, can be altered from the path it is currently on? Why do they believe that somehow their prayers will be answered and that some time in the near future, their family will be one of the only fully born-again, filled with fire-like passion for God, Christians? Why do they dare believe that this is a ripple and that other families are and will do the same, realizing that this is God’s heart?

Why do they wake up so early when all of them have very busy, very successful families and well-established professional lives? Why do they do this?

Because they believe in the word of the Lord that never changes. They believe the impossible. They believe that their whole family can walk holy before the Lord God, because each of them will accept that they are covered by the righteous robe of Christ. They know this. They know that they should have been wiped out a long time ago because of all the things they have done, but One who was greater died in their place.

Because they know who they believe in. They know that when He says that He hears them when they pray and if He hears them, they have what they have asked for. This is what they know. They know that their God does not want anyone to die without having secured a place in the heavenly eternal. They know that that is His heart, that He wants His children to be with Him forever to love them, to know them, to listen to them, to sing and dance with them. And even here on earth, this family knows that the promises God makes to them, and anyone who receives Him as their God, are all theirs because they have accepted His life for the life they live now. All of the answers to God’s promises are yes and in agreement with His plans for their lives on this earth.

This precious five are, of course, my dear family who prays out of their heart of love for the rest of our family. They are revolutionaries, resistance-fighters for the cause of Christ. I am honored to serve with them in this way. I thank God for them and honor all that they are in God.

My family, I love you.

OK… So You’ve Got to Fight For It

All this talk about believing in your dreams, living the impossible, and expecting greatness, and… um, where is the reality? Well the truth of the matter is that you have to take on this belief and mind-set and follow through on some pretty tangible action. Belief and expectation are not abstract ideas. They are action words. Belief, or faith as some people understand it, is not what it is until action accompanies it. In many aspects, what you do shows the inner core of what you believe.

Living in the impossible, living your dreams, living with great expectations takes great effort in a world of mediocrity and complacency. I often think of people like Rick Warren, Oprah Winfrey, and Bill Gates. Do I really think that they sat around and just daydreamed of all the things that wanted to be and all of a sudden it just appeared. I don’t think so. I think of them having many late nights of strategy and planning. Maybe there were some nights they cried because their closest friends and family laughed or told them that what they wanted to do was impossible. They had to find strength from somewhere to be the rare successful jewels our generation can look up to and admire. Of course they aren’t perfect. That is not my point. But how many African American women billionaires do you know? I personally know zero. How in the world did she get there? I am sure she had to combat not only societal limitations for “people like her,” but she also had to fight her own thoughts about herself formed by negative words spoken to her by family members, teachers, or others in leadership. She had to fight the “I can’ts” and the “it’s too hards” or the “I’m sacreds” every day.

To think of achieving your personal level of success (and I am not only speaking of money, but a level of contentment that you are doing what you were meant to do, that you are using the optimum of your potential), amidst a majority of people who live in the past and in regret, one would have to have some pretty rock hard beliefs and faith. This level of faith and believing could not be internal only. They would have to be such a part of your fabric that you behave in conjunction with these life-altering beliefs.

So here’s where I ask again what do you believe? What is the root of what you chose to do today? Does it match the dreams and hopes you have for yourself? If you want to travel the world, are you learning new languages? If you want to be a inspiring author, are you good with words? If you want to retire at 45, do you at least have a 401k? Take time to discover your dreams, and then make steps to achieve them. You don’t have to give into what the majority around you does. You don’t have to live in regret. But you do have to fight.

Surrounding yourself with positive, encouraging, upwardly mobile people is a really helpful thing to do. Another is to evaluate your weaknesses and seek to improve them. But the ultimate thing is to find out from God what you were originally created to do. He is your life’s tech support. He can set you back to your default. A lot of things get us off the course of purpose and fulfillment, but getting that diagnostic, that defrag and systems check from the ultimate IT department can set you on the right path of fulfilling your purpose and dreams.

“The simple truth is that if you had a mere kernel of faith, a poppy seed, say, you would tell this mountain, ‘Move!’ and it would move. There is nothing you wouldn’t be able to tackle” (Matthew 17:20, The Message).

“What good is it…if you say you have faith but don’t show it by your actions?…faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless” (James 2:14-17, New Living Translation).

Who Knows What to Expect, But It’s Gonna Be Good!

Have you ever woke up having that feeling that something really good is going to happen? Wow! You’re just bouncing around, humming, anticipating something great. Well my dad used to wake up my brother and I to a tune that at the moment I can’t remember the origins of, but the words went something like this: “Today is a day that is filled with excitement. Nobody knows what’s gonna happen…” That song used to get me all riled up and excited for the day to begin.

When you live a life of focus and purpose, you tend to live in a place of expectancy. You expect a positive, profitable return on your investments of time, money, hard work, generosity, encouragement, kindness, and so on. When you work, you expect money. When you give love and respect, you expect love and respect. When you pour out of your heart to someone in need emotionally, spiritually, and financially, you expect to be rewarded exponentially. Well…you should.

You’ve probably heard of the law of the harvest–whatever you sow, you will reap. Or, the golden rule–do to others what you would have them do to you. Well, this is one of the many foundational laws that set our world in motion. When you put something in, expect to get something out.

Sometimes it is hard to know, after all of your dedicated service, your financial investments, your commitment to your family, your choosing to live a good life, how you will be rewarded or in what way you will be rewarded. All rewards are not “in kind,” meaning that when you dedicated those weeks at your sick relative’s side, you may not get someone to do the same for you. However, you may get an answer or an open door of opportunity to a silent prayer, dream, or wish that you’ve never uttered to anyone.

My main charge: look forward to good things when you release good things to others from your heart. Your dreams may come true through your giving a special kindness, a word of encouragement, a smile, a sum of money, mentoring someone who wants to be where you are…

By seizing opportunities to live in this way, your dreams of the impossible could be granted. Who knows what can happen? Anything is possible.

“If you give, you will receive. your gift will return to you in full measure, pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, and running over. Whatever measure you use in giving–large or small–it will be used to measure what is given back to you” (Luke 6:38, NLT).

“God blesses those who are merciful, for they shall be shown mercy” (Matthew 5:7, NLT).

“Remember: A stingy planter gets a stingy crop; a lavish planted gets a lavish crop. I want each of you to take plenty of time to think it over, and make up your mind what you will give….God loves it when the giver delights in giving. God can pour on the blessings in astonishing ways so that you’re ready for anything and everything, more than just ready to do what needs to be done. As one psalmist put it, ‘He throws caution to the winds, giving to the needy in reckless abandon. His right-living, right-giving ways never run out, never wear out'” (2 Corinthians 9:6-9, The Message).

“Give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow [Jesus]” Matthew 19:21, NKJV).

“Give to those in need. This will store up treasure for you in heaven! And the purses in heaven have no holes in them. Your treasure will be safe–and no thief can steal it and no moth can destroy it. Wherever you treasure is, there your heart and thoughts will also be” (Luke 12:33-34, NLT).

Living the Impossible

So many times life can seem too difficult to dream above what you can see in the present, but how quickly can things change if you dare to believe in your dreams? We don’t get dreams just to sit on them. We have dreams to make us feel the rush of real life, to feel the briskness of being edgy, daring, brave, useful, wanted…

There is no sense in living in regret. Just because you didn’t do what you wanted yesterday, doesn’t mean that you can’t do it today or even tomorrow. Who says dreams have time limits?

Our dreams contain our destiny and our identity. Consider the One who created you: if you know who He is, then you know who you are and what you can do. You are limitless. Nothing can stop you, except what you know and believe about who you are.

You can start today on a dream that you may have had 30 years ago. This is your life. Live it to the full. You aren’t dead, so you might as well live. Don’t say, “Oh, I wish I could…” You can! Brainstorm. Get help. Call friends. Get excited about the possibilities of the impossible.

“You are here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth….You are here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world….Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven” (Matthew 5, The Message)

“There is nothing [God] can’t do” (Jeremiah 32:17, The Message).

“By [God’s] power at work within us, he is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would ever dare to ask or hope” (Ephesians 3:20, NLT).

“Everything is possible with God” (Matthew 19:26; Mark 10:27, NLT).

“For I can do everything with the help of Christ who gives me the strength I need” (Philippians 4:13, NLT).

“Anything is possible if a person believes” (Mark 9:23, NLT).

Sweet Dream or a Beautiful Nightmare

Not sure what to call this, but I (Jevon) had a dream last night that Will and I were the guest worship leaders at this church that both of our families attended when we were children. The church had grown up a lot in my dream. It had an orchestra versus your standard contemporary worship band. We did not have a chance to rehearse with the band, because it was fairly short notice, but we figured it would be OK since we had chosen songs we all knew.

Anyhow, we were sitting stage left, when we received our cue to take the stage and begin worship. We walked up the stairs and up onto the stage clapping our hands and praising God, letting the audience know it was time to worship the King of kings. “Everyone stand on your feet and let’s worship the Lord together!”

The music began and it was full and beautiful. For some reason we were doing “Victory Is Mine”—a very old song. As we were about to open our mouths to sing we noticed there were no lyrics, no charts on the podium, no big screen in the back of the auditorium. Honestly, I am not sure why this was a problem. For the most part, Will and I memorize the lyrics to the songs we lead. It’s something we have really tried to train ourselves in for moments like the one I was dreaming.

It seemed like the floor had dropped out from under us, but we tried to recover and start the set anyway. Some how the band started the song in a different key and Will and I both were just ad libbing and doing free worship trying to find the melody. No such luck.

We dropped back to the rear of the stage and tried to see what the band director had on his podium. What charts was he reading? Do we need to start over? Do we have time to change the set? Can we rehearse really quick?

Absurd questions of course. It’s showtime, dawg! You’re on! But it was a dream, and sometimes dream exaggerate spaces of time and even emotions.

So while we are trying to get our footing, the elders filed onto the stage and took their seats. The one who was responsible for the morning welcome and announcements got up and did his piece. They were moving on with the program. Oh, well…

We went back to our seats on stage left and actually did not feel embarrassment. We had that feeling of “these things happen.” Very strange.

Are you a dream interpreter? Maybe you can share what you think. Or maybe you’ve had a dream similar to this. What did you gain from it?