Monday, February 11, 2013

FROM NOW ON by Gary Wilkerson

After the angel’s announcement, “You have found favor with God . . .” (Luke 1:30), the Bible says that Mary “conceived.” This is what happens to us when we find God’s favor—He births something new in our lives. If you have children, you know that once they arrive, nothing is the same—your world is completely turned upside down. And so it is when God’s favor falls on our lives.

Mary grasped this. She saw that things were going to be different, no matter what trouble might come with it. The angel told her that her child was going to set captives free—and it stirred Mary’s soul. She broke into song:

“My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant. For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name. And his mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation” (Luke 1:46-50, ESV, emphases mine).

I want to focus on two highlighted phrases from Mary’s song. First: “He has looked on the humble estate of his servant.” Mary realized God had seen her situation, her heart, her fears, hopes and dreams. God “looks on” you and me in the same way. He sees straight into our needs, longings and fears, including the thought that, “My life is too impossible for even God to straighten out. Nothing will ever change.”

With God’s favor, we can testify with Mary, “I am blessed by the Lord, because He sees me in all my circumstances. He can make changes in my life at any time and conceive things I could never imagine.”

In the second phrase of Mary’s song, realizing that God was making a transition in her life, she declared, “From now on, I walk in God’s favor. I lay aside all my striving for security and safety and surrender all my wants and desires to Him.”

This is the defining moment that God’s favor brings to our lives. The declaration, “From now on,” marks a 180-degree change in our direction. Anyone who walks in God’s favor can say, “From now on, my addictions have no hold over me. My difficult marriage will be softened because of God’s love. My child who is running from God will feel His wooing conviction.”