“As it is written, I have made you the father of many nations. [He was appointed our father] in the sight of God in Whom he believed, Who gives life to the dead and speaks of the nonexistent things that [He has foretold and promised] as if they [already] existed.” Romans 4:17 AMP
When people look at you, all they see is your history, but when God looks at you, what He sees is your destiny. God had already seen your potential, your destiny before you were conceived. (Psalm 139:16).Destiny, simply, is what God had foreordained for your life before you were born. “For we are God’s [own] handiwork (His workmanship), recreated in Christ Jesus, [born anew] that we may do those good works which God predestined (planned beforehand) for us [taking paths which He prepared ahead of time], that we should walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us to live].” (Ephesians 2:10.AMP). It is the purpose of God that you are to fulfill on the earth. (Proverbs. 19:21). It is the dream of your life that God has given to you, like Joseph (Genesis 37).
GOD SEES OUR DESTINY
God came to Abraham and said to him, “I have made you a father of many nations.” As at the time God was speaking to Abraham, his body was as good as dead and Sarah had passed the age of childbearing (Romans 4:19). God must have been speaking from a reality that was beyond human conception. The truth is that if something is black and God calls it white, it is not that God is lying but that God can in a moment turn it from black to white. He “…speaks of the nonexistent things that [He has foretold and promised] as if they [already] existed.”
You wonder why God calls us saints. In most of his writings to the churches, Paul began by addressing them as ‘saints’ (Ephesians 1:1; Colossians 1:2). That included even the Corinthian Church! (1 Corinthians 1:2). The truth is that many of us don’t look like it. In fact, we are nowhere close to looking like it, but God is speaking based on what He sees in His sight: “Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes.” (Ephesians 1:4. NLT).
When God looks at you, what He sees is your destiny. God speaks with the certainty of someone who knows how you will turn out. He knows what your life will be like when He’s done with you. He has already been to your future and has seen you experiencing that life. He then comes to you (as He did Abraham) and gives you a promise to stand on. So, He could say to Abraham, “I have made you the father of many nations” when Abraham didn’t even have a child. A man may be poor today but in His sight, God sees a wealthy man, living in his own house, driving his own car, fulfilled in every way. A woman may have no child right now but in His sight, God sees a joyful mother of children. A person may be struggling now to live the Christian life but what God sees is an anointed instrument bringing millions of souls into the kingdom. Sometimes, we even see ourselves in the dream living that life but often wake up to our disappointing reality. Some of our dreams are the preview of our destiny.
At a time when Israel was being oppressed by the Midianites, God sent a surprising message to Gideon. “Now the Angel of the Lord came and sat under the terebinth tree which was in Ophrah, which belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, while his son Gideon threshed wheat in the winepress, in order to hide it from the Midianites. And the Angel of the Lord appeared to him, and said to him, “The Lord is with you, you mighty man of valor!”(Judges 6:11-12). When the Angel of the Lord addressed Gideon as a “mighty warrior” (NIV), Gideon must have wondered whom the angel was speaking to because Gideon didn’t look like a warrior neither was he acting like one. In fact, from his action, he was acting like a wimp! However, in His sight, God was not seeing a wimp but a warrior. God was calling forth the greatness that was in Gideon.
There are many warriors today who don’t know who they are. They are ‘threshing wheat in the winepress’ because of fear but God has a great commission for their lives. When Jesus called Peter and his fishing partners, Peter’s response was: “…Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord.” But what Jesus saw was “fishers of men.” (Luke 5:8-10)
PEOPLE ONLY SEE YOUR HISTORY
Unfortunately, when people look at you, what they see is your history, not your destiny. Their conclusions about you are based solely on what they knew about you or what they currently see in you. When David showed up on the battlefield, what Eliab saw was his history, on the basis of which he had concluded that nothing good could come out of David. But God was seeing a warrior-king! (1 Samuel 17:26-29). May God help us to see people as He sees them.
Paul said, “Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh…” (2 Corinthians 5:16. KJV).Can we accept people without judging them based on their past? Do we believe that God can redeem people’s past? That’s why we must treat people well. That is why you must not write off anyone unless you know the end of their life.
It was said of Napoleon that each time he saw a child, he would bow to greet that child. Once, one of his generals asked him why he did so. His response was, “I’ve seen what you’ve become but I don’t know what that child will become.” It is wrong to write off people when we don’t know the destiny they carry. We need to intentionally call forth the greatness in people.
WE SEE OUR HISTORY TOO
Sadly too, often, when you look at yourself, what you see is your history. That’s because nobody knows you like you know yourself. Even when nobody saw you, you were with yourself when certain things happened in your life. As a result, you have become the greatest witness against yourself. Even when God shows you your destiny, you cannot relate to it because of your past.
Moses was like that. When God began to speak to Moses about his destiny as Israel’s deliverer from the bondage of Egypt, all Moses could see was his history. “But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring the children of Israel out of Egypt?” (Exodus 3:11). Why did Moses have such a low view of himself? It was because of what had happened forty years earlier. He had murdered an Egyptian as a result of which he had been in exile for four decades. Like many of us, Moses didn’t think that much could come out of his life based on his past but he was wrong.
The real challenge for you today is to see yourself as God sees you. When God looks at you, He doesn’t see a thrash. God didn’t spend time to make thrash. What you are beholding of yourself is what you are becoming!
THE NEED TO MOVE ON
I was watching a programme the other day where a mother was testifying of her daughter who fell down from a horse when she was 5. She had severe brain damage. The neurosurgeon handling her case gave the prognosis that at the age of 30, 40 or even 50 she will still have the brain of a five year old. That means that her mental development ended at that age. Thank God that a miracle happened along the way that changed the condition of that child. But, unfortunately, there are people who have not moved past an experience that happened several years ago in their lives. Although the other people involved have moved on, they are still stuck where that experience left them. God is asking you to move on.
I remember a man who returned from exile in the early 1980s. He had fled to Equatorial Guinea during the civil war and had been there for close to two decades. He returned home with boxes but didn’t open them for a long time. It became a concern to the family members. When they couldn’t hold it any longer, they forced him to open the boxes. When he did, everyone realised why he was reluctant to expose the content.
Apparently, he had purchased things he wanted to give to family members but they were based on the fashion he knew before he left the country. He thought things were the same. He came with things like ‘bongo trousers,’ ‘psychedelic shoes,’ etc. He was too ashamed to open the boxes when he realised that things had changed, people had moved on.
God wants us to move on, to stop living in the past, to stop talking about what happened 20 years ago as if it happened yesterday. Often, the people we had issues with have forgotten about what happened and have moved on but we are still stuck in the past. It is this pattern of thinking that holds you back!
God wasn’t pleased when Israel was stuck in a spot. “The Lord our God spoke to us in Horeb, saying: ‘You have dwelt long enough at this mountain.” (Deuteronomy 1:6). As if that was not enough, God further asked them to stop going round and round in circles but rather to move on (Deuteronomy 2:2-3). God even used a little bit of sarcasm to motivate them. He reminded them that other nations had moved on. The descendants of Esau, who had an inferior promise, had moved into their own inheritance. The descendants of Lot had also moved on, so Israel should stop complaining and move on.
I want to recommend a mindset that will help you to move on. It is SW raised to power 3 or SW cube! The first SW stands for ‘Some Will;’ the second stands for ‘Some Won’t;’ while the third stands for ‘So What!’ In this life, some will like you; some won’t like you; so what? Some will accept you; some won’t accept you; so what? Some will help you; some won’t help you; so what? Some will like your postings on Facebook, others won’t, so what? When you have this kind of attitude to life, you won’t be stuck because of what people do to you. Learn to say ‘so what’ and move on to your destiny.
Sometimes, when you’re watching an action-packed movie, there is a lot of anxiety especially if it’s a film that you’ve never watched before. It also happens with football. There is a lot of tension because you don’t know how it will end. But it is a different ballgame when you know the end before you started watching. No matter what unfolds, you are calm because you know how it will end. God knows the end from the beginning. He sees your destiny and knows it won’t end as you think. That’s why He’s not nervous concerning your present circumstances. He says, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.” (Jeremiah 29:11).