A few years ago I ‘stumbled’ across a whole new avenue of miracles! I was busy packing my bags preparing to minister in Harrismith for the weekend and as I put my CAT boots on, the Lord warned me to take another pair of shoes because I was to give my boots to the pastor (who I hadn’t met before).
During the evening meeting I kept glancing at the pastor’s feet to see what size he wore! When I asked him, Johann ( the pastor) told me he wore mostly size 11 shoes. I was suddenly not keen to part with my brand new, tight-fitting, steel-toe, from-America, CATERPILLER SIZE 9 boots! I thought, “Lord, why do you want me to give him shoes that won’t even fit him?” It just didn’t make sense and God wasn’t explaining!
After an awesome evening meeting that ended around 12 o’clock, we were in Johann’s kitchen and I brought up what God had said, and then joking added , “well, either God’s going to have to make the shoes bigger or your feet smaller!”
Johann, who had much more faith then me, took the shoes and put them on and they fitted him! Totally amazed, I demanded that he immediately take the shoes off again so I could put them on - only to find they were too big for my feet!
It was only a few days later that I came across the scripture in Deuteronomy 29:5 I took you through the wilderness for forty years and through all that time the clothes on your backs didn't wear out, the sandals on your feet didn't wear out.
Can you imagine wearing the same shoes from when you were 3 years old until you were 43 ?!
That miracle sent my friend Edwin and I on a tangent praying over shoes and clothes! We even saw a skirt change from size 32 to 38!
When evangelising in the taxi rank, I came across a lady who was standing barefoot with her shoes lying neatly next to her. After my interrogations she told me they were making her feet sore, and after my wife and I prayed over the shoes, the lady put them on and walked around. She said they were really feeling better but pointed to one spot on her right shoe and said, “this part here is still I little tight, can you pray again?”
Totally amazed at her simple faith, we placed our fingers on that exact spot and asked the Tailor of all tailors to fix it and He DID! She was happy and we were shocked! Africa’s faith!
So send me your clothes and shoes that you’ve outgrown. . . I know Someone who does a good job at modifying them to fit just right!! Some people pray for weight-loss, others pray for wardrobe-contents alteration!
A few Sundays ago, I sat outside in the warm Spring sun and read the whole story of Joseph in Genesis. God really opened the Word to me but I didn’t realise that within the next 24 hours, He would confirm the importance of this remarkable story at least 4 or 5 times! That afternoon I received an email from Thailand dedicated to Joseph! Then 2 different television preachers preached on Joseph etc., so I realised God was trying to emphasise something – JOSEPH!!!
I would encourage you to read the whole account, but I’m going to emphasise just a few points for now to whet your appetite!
I believe it’s a prophetic story as it ties in with the last email I sent (VALLEY EXIT). Remember how Psalm 23 relates so closely with Luke 4 – the temptation of Jesus and during His exit out of the wilderness, God prepares a table before Him in His enemy’s presence and then anoints Him? As I said before, I really believe many of us are now in this transition phase. Jesus ministry boomed after the wilderness/ valley experience. He was made manifest to the world, increased in momentum and fulfilled great destiny! Daylight is coming (Acts 27:29…). Breakthrough and promotion is near! It’s exciting times!
Joseph was just 17 years old – a cocky little teenage daddy’s boy with a ‘you-can’t-touch-me-‘cos-I’m-the-favourite attitude!’
In Genesis 37:2, Joseph brings and evil report about his brothers to dad Jacob, and gets his brothers into trouble. Shortly afterward, he dreams 2 dreams about his family bowing down to him as unto a king! I don’t think he told his family the dreams with a humble attitude! His brothers hated him and he even got a rebuke from Jacob! But Joseph didn’t care – he knew he was born for greatness… what harm could come to him?
A few days later the unimaginable happened. He found himself in a pit, and then sold to Ishmaelite’s. Imagine listening to his brothers negotiating his price and then, while his hands and neck were being bound, overhearing the fabricated story they would tell his dear father.
Being led away, his tears and cries for mercy fell on deaf ears. As he watched his brothers rejoice over the few silver coins, he realised no one would come for him. In time he would be forgotten – or perhaps remain a distant memory or regret. The pain of realising he would never see his loving father again became a reality as the sun set over the desert dunes and his night became even darker!
After days of walking the hot desert sands, this teenage boy suddenly found himself enslaved, forced into a foreign land with foreign gods, foreign language and no one who cared for him.
What hope would you give him? What hope would you give yourself if you were in that situation? Would you still trust, let alone praise God in that situation?!
Surprisingly he thrived because of one thing – 39:2 The Lord was with Joseph, and he [though a slave] was a successful and prosperous man.
A successful slave?! Perhaps God’s view of success is a little different from ours!
Don’t write people off because of their circumstances or upbringing, or give up on them because they haven’t been given a chance in life. Let us not reject the rejected! Throughout history God has used these kinds of people to surprise and impact the world!
He uses the foolish things and DESPISED things of this world to shame the wise!
God, Who was preparing him to steward a nation and feed the known world for 7 years, taught Joseph how to steward another man’s house and later steward a prison!
LUKE 16:10 He who is faithful in a very little is faithful also in much, and he who is dishonest in a very little is dishonest also in much.
16:11 Therefore if you have not been faithful in the [case of] unrighteous mammon, who will entrust to you the true riches?
16:12 And if you have not proved faithful in that which belongs to another [whether God or man], who will give you that which is your own [that is, the true riches]?
I’m always amazed at how Joseph resisted the temptation of Potiphar’s wife. He had hardly been taught good family values for he was sold in Egypt at such a young vulnerable age and yet one of his oldest brothers, Judah – who had the “perfect upbringing”, growing up in a safe environment, and instructed in God’s ways – got up to a load of nonsense in Genesis 38!
I love Joseph’s answer to Potiphar’s wife.
Gen 39:8 But he refused and said to his master's wife, See here, with me in the house my master has concern about nothing; he has put all that he has in my care.
39:9 He is not greater in this house than I am; nor has he kept anything from me except you, for you are his wife. How then can I do this great evil and sin against God?
Perhaps others in Joseph’s situation would have reasoned that God had let them down, abandoned them and they needed to try find a way out themselves. Survival first, fear God second! He didn’t have the privilege of reading his own life’s outcome as we do!
It’s clear Joseph was not ashamed of his God, and being the head over Potiphar’s servants as well, he would have been a powerful testimony of purity and faithfulness. But when he finds himself falsely accused with even evidence to ‘prove’ his great guilt, it would’ve seemed that his very testimony of integrity was compromised!
Perhaps in Joseph’s mind, he was the lowest on the social scale – a slave. But he suddenly found himself even lower as he was made a prisoner. But what’s even lower than a prisoner is a slave-prisoner!
Think about it... a slave being sent to jail – there is no specific time to serve and no freedom in sight – he wasn’t free before he went to jail. They locked him up and ‘threw away the key’!
The journey to destiny isn’t necessarily how we envision it. The way forward may seem backward sometimes. Joseph’s road to great destiny involved being hated, betrayed, enslaved, falsely accused and imprisoned. But amidst these things, God was always with him to prosper, encourage and grant him favour wherever he found himself.
2 Corinthians 4:17 says For our light, momentary affliction (this slight distress of the passing hour) is ever more and more abundantly preparing and producing and achieving for us an everlasting weight of glory.
Just ask David about his journey to the throne! Perseverance will see our dreams fulfilled. Both David and Joseph were given a glimpse of their destiny around age 17 and both only saw fulfilment 13 years later. There was a journey to take but I truly believe we are nearing that time in our lives where great things – those things we’ve longed to see and haven’t; those things we’ve been promised and haven’t seen – will begin to take place!
Many of us are in that transition phase between the prison and the palace(Joseph), between Ziglag and the throne (David),and between the valley and the overflowing cup (Psalm 23), and between the wilderness and Nazareth (where Jesus was anointed)!
He’s prepared the table in the presence of our enemies. He’s brought us to the place of total bowing down – realising that it’s not our works, it’s not our prayers, it’s nothing on our part, and there’s no room to boast in anything except what He has brought about through His faithfulness alone!
Now, after Joseph was promoted to Pharaoh’s palace…
Genesis 41:50 Now to Joseph were born two sons… And Joseph called the firstborn Manasseh [making to forget], For God…has made me forget all my toil and hardship and all my father's house.
And the second he called Ephraim [to be fruitful], For [he said] God has caused me to be fruitful in the land of my affliction (2 Cor. 4:17).
I’m not saying we have arrived at perfection and a finish line. I’m saying that we’re entering a brand new significant season. We’re stepping into what GOD HAS PROMISED! The winter has been long and it’s time for Spring rain! When Joseph, David and Jesus entered their season of promotion, it wasn’t the end but merely the beginning. God made Joseph forget and God made him extremely fruitful and prosperous!
Isaiah 43:2 When you pass through the waters, I will be with you, and through the rivers, they will not overwhelm you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned or scorched, nor will the flame kindle upon you…
43:18 Forget the former things; do not consider the past.
43:19 See, I (God) am doing a new thing! Now it springs forth; do you not perceive it? I will even make a way in the wilderness (Psakm23 & Luke 4) and rivers in the desert.
It’s time to let go of what happened – the failure, the loss, the betrayal, the humiliation - and begin to HOPE again. He will make us fruitful again and bring restoration!
Isaiah 60:15 Although you have been forsaken and hated (Gen 37:8) … I (God) will make you (Gen 41:50) the everlasting pride and joy of all generations.
Isn’t that verse so significant of Joseph? Gen 41:50-51 Joseph declares what God had made him and not what he had achieved –what humility! What a picture of Jesus!
Finally, I want to point out that David was anointed for destiny around 17 years of age but was only anointed king 13 years later at age 30. Joseph had his dreams at 17 and entered the palace at age 30. Jesus was anointed and entered his ministry at 30. Jesus went through great temptation – not only in the wilderness, but in his twenties too, I believe. The Bible says he was tempted in every way – yet without sin!
It’s clear that both David and Joseph were prophetic pictures of the life of Jesus but it seems only David and Jesus were ANOINTED… or does it?
When Jesus was anointed at Nazareth (Luke 4), the 7 Spirits of God (Isaiah 11) came upon Him:
1. The Spirit of the Lord
2. The Spirit of Wisdom
3. The Spirit of Knowledge
4. The Spirit of Understanding
5. The Spirit of Power
6. The Spirit of Counsel
7. The Spirit of the fear of the Lord
Now look at how the 7 Spirits of God are present when Joseph is standing before Pharaoh about to be promoted in Gen. 41!
1. The Spirit of the Lord (v38) And Pharaoh said to his servants, Can we find this man's equal, a man in whom is the spirit of God?
2. The Spirit of Wisdom (v33,39) And Pharaoh said to Joseph, Forasmuch as God has shown you all this, there is nobody as… wise as you are.
3. The Spirit of Knowledge(v32) “That the dream was sent twice to Pharaoh and in two forms indicates that this thing which God will very soon bring to pass is fully prepared and established by God.” (He had knowledge of God’s intent).
4. The Spirit of Counsel (v33) “So now let Pharaoh seek out and provide a man discreet, understanding, proficient, and wise and set him over the land of Egypt”. (He counselled Pharaoh in finding the solution).
5. The Spirit of Understanding (v33, 39) ) “So now let Pharaoh seek out and provide a man discreet, understanding…”
And Pharaoh said to Joseph, Forasmuch as God has shown you all this, there is nobody as… understanding… as you are.
6. The Spirit of Power (33,40) “So now let Pharaoh… provide a man… and set him over the land of Egypt.”
“You shall have charge over my house, and all my people shall be governed according to your word [with reverence, submission, and obedience].”
7. The Spirit of the fear of the Lord (16,28) Joseph answered Pharaoh, It is not in me; God [not I] will give Pharaoh an answer of peace…
This is the message just as I have told Pharaoh: God has shown Pharaoh what He is about to do.
The Holy Spirit and the anointing empower us to prosper and be fruitful.
OH GOD! FILL US ANEW WITH YOUR SPIRIT. LET THE 7 SPIRITS OF GOD EMPOWER AND PROPEL US INTO THIS NEW THING THAT YOU HAVE FOR US! USHER US INTO THIS SEASON OF BREAKTHROUGH, THIS SEASON OF MOMENTUM AND ACCELARATION! ANOINT US WITH FRESH OIL THAT WE MIGHT MAKE AN IMPACT AND BRING GLORY TO YOUR NAME. LORD, YOU MAKE US FORGET THE FORMER THINGS, YOU MAKE US PROSPER AND YOU TAKE ALL THE GLORY! AMEN!
3 John 1:2 Beloved, I pray above all things that you may prosper in every way and be in health, even as your soul prospers.