The greater the favor that God pours out, the greater the faith it requires from man.
As a pastor I’ve fallen for this before, and I continue to see and hear SO many others do the same. Things are said like “MAN, I wish we had the favor like THAT church has.” “If I had the favor THAT pastor had.” “If we just had MORE favor.” And to be honest, when we say things like that, I think it just shows how much we don’t really know.
In Luke 1:27 Gabriel appeared to Mary and said “Greetings, FAVORED woman! The Lord is with you!”
FAVORED? Before you ask for God’s FAVOR you better remember what Mary had to FACE! Her fiance wanted to divorce her. More than likely she was accused of being a harlot. Who KNOWS how many threats she faced; friends and family she lost. She gave birth in a stable (cave, livestock holding area. Whatever you want to call it, it wasn’t FAVORable). She fled for her and her Sons life to Egypt. She watched her Son rise to prominence, then be BRUTALLY beaten and crucified on a cross. FAVORED? If that’s favor, do we really want to seek it?
Paul had the favor of God. Read 2 Corinthians 11:23-29. Stephen had the favor of God. Read Acts 7:54-60 . The unnamed people of Hebrews 11 had God’s favor. Read Hebrews 11:35-40 I mean, I could go on. Now don’t get me wrong, the favor of God is also an AMAZING thing. It just seems we focus on all the REWARDS of God’s favor and none of the REFINING! We see all the PERFORMANCES of those who have it but none of the PAIN they went through to keep it.
The favor of God WILL bring the contempt of men. The favor of God WILL require more sacrifice. The favor of God WILL test your faithfulness to Him. The greater the favor that God pours out, the greater the faith it requires from man. I just think we…I, need to remember that.