Day Twenty-Seven: Detours and Delays part 2

40 days of prayer devotion

by David Shannon Wooten – February 2, 2018

Day Twenty-Seven: Detours and Delays part 2

Genesis 50:20, You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people.

Most of the time detours and delays come at a surprise. We normally don’t anticipate problems. They catch us off guard and always have the potential to discourage us. These setbacks can kill our faith and dreams. But if we keep our trust in God and include a “God-Perspective”, we will not lose hope.

Joseph had twice as many detours and delays than good days.Broken Heart

Consider Joseph how God gave him a dream but immediately he experienced a setback. God was showing Joseph that he would bless him, he would become a great leader and have great influence. But when Joseph shared his dream with his brothers, they hated him. Talking about starting out on the wrong foot. It’s a bad day when you share how God wants to bless you and people hate you in return.

The journey for Joseph to reach his dream was not an easy one. He faced several detours and delays before he ever fulfilled the dream. In fact, he had twice as many detours and delays than breakthroughs.

  • Sold into slavery (detour & delay).
  • Living in a strange country far from home (detour & delay).
  • Given favor in Potiphar’s house (breakthrough)
  • Falsely accused by Potiphar’s wife (detour & delay).
  • Thrown into prison (detour & delay).
  • Put in charge of all the prisoners (breakthrough).
  • Forgotten by the cupbearer (detour & delay).
  • Remained in prison two more years (detour & delay).
  • Became second in command in Egypt (breakthrough).

In the natural it appears Joseph is moving away from his dream. But as Joseph stated in Genesis 50:20, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good.” Joseph had twice as many “bad days” as he did good. But he maintained his faith, because he had a “God-Perspective”.

Don’t waste your time adding up the days you are detoured or delayed. God uses a different formula to bring you to your breakthrough.

God will use your detours and delays to bring you to a good place.

In yesterday’s devotion, Detours and Delay’s Part 1, I listed a few people who accomplished great things, but did so by pushing through the bad days. To further illustrate this very important principle, here are a few more to add to our list:

THOMAS EDISON’s teachers told him he was “too stupid to learn anything.” Edison also famously invented 1,000 light bulbs before creating one that worked.

R.H. MACY had a history of failing at businesses, including a dud Macy’s in NYC. But Macy kept up the hard work and ended up with the biggest department store in the world.

STEVEN SPIELBERG was rejected from his dream school, the University of Southern California, three times. He sought out an education somewhere else and dropped out to be a director.

WALT DISNEY was fired by a newspaper editor because he “lacked imagination and had no good ideas.” Several more of his businesses failed before the premiere of his movie Snow White. Today, most children wouldn’t be the same without his ideas.

As you go through the bad days of detours and delays, keep the “God-Perspective”. Your enemy will want to use these setbacks to stop you. His goal is to distract you, weary you and drain your faith. Trust God with your detours and delays. He will bring you to a good place. 

Detours and delays. God knows how to get you to your breakthrough



 

 


REFLECT:

What is God revealing about Himself through this scripture?

What do you hear God saying to you in this scripture?

How does this apply to your life?

Rephrase this scripture to a personal prayer for you. Give God thanks for how He is revealing Himself through this scripture. Request His help.

For further encouragement about prayer and hearing God’s voice, you can listen to Newspring “Frequency” sermon series at newspringlive.com/watch-read/media

frequency hearing God sermon series

Day Twenty-Six: Detours and Delays part 1

40 days of prayer devotion

by David Shannon Wooten – February 1, 2018

Day Twenty-Six: Detours and Delays part 1

Habakkuk 2:3 (TLB), “ But these things I plan won’t happen right away. Slowly, steadily, surely, the time approaches when the vision will be fulfilled. If it seems slow, do not despair, for these things will surely come to pass. Just be patient!They will not be overdue a single day!” 

Road Closed Detour Delays

Detours and delays can be very frustrating. For six months I was forced to drive 10 miles out of my way because of a detour. The Ohio Department of Transportation was tearing down a bridge near my house. That extra 10 miles added another 15 minutes to my travel schedule. For the first few weeks I enjoyed the new scenery. Admiring houses and yards I’ve never seen, barns, fields and flowers that were not on my normal route. But after 3 weeks, I didn’t see scenery. I was so frustrated with extra mileage and time wasted, all I seen was red. I was so done with this detour.

After the construction as I was driving over this nice brand-new bridge, it hit me. That old bridge was wearing down. It was rusted, pot holes, concrete sides were crumbling. While I was enduring the detour, someone was working on this new bridge that would serve me and my family well. This new bridge was wider, it was safer and it would last for many years.

A detour means construction is happening.

It’s inevitable, you will experience detours and delays in your life. Your plans will unexpectedly change. The answer to your prayer will appear to be delayed. You must know that detours & delays mean construction is happening somewhere. God is developing you and constructing your future at Construction housethe same time. When you experience a detour or a delay, know that God is working on your future. Instead of a construction sign saying, “Men at Work”, It’s a sign that says, “God at Work”. He is setting things up for you.

God will not place you in a future that you are not prepared for. And He will not send you to a place that is not prepared for you.

A delay does not mean you’re denied.

Every person in history who accomplished great things had two things in common.  #1 They experienced delays. #2 They didn’t let that stop them. They didn’t give up.

  • WINSTON CHURCHILL failed the sixth grade. He was defeated in every public office role he ran for. Then he became the British prime minister at the age of 62.
  • The first time JERRY SEINFELD went onstage, he was booed away by the jeering crowd. Eventually, he became a famous comic with one of the most-loved sitcoms ever.
  • DR. SEUSS’ first book was rejected by 27 different publishers. He’s now the most popular children’s book author ever.

A delay does not mean you’re denied. A detour does not mean God is not able to get you to the breakthrough. You may not enjoy the detour or delay, but you will LOVE what God has been constructing for you when you arrive.

Don’t stop. Keep your trust in God. Keep praying. Continually speak God’s Word over your life and situations. Maintain the right spirit and attitude.

Detour and delay does not mean denied


REFLECT:

What is God revealing about Himself through this scripture?

What do you hear God saying to you in this scripture?

How does this apply to your life?

Rephrase this scripture to a personal prayer for you. Give God thanks for how He is revealing Himself through this scripture. Request His help.

For further encouragement about prayer and hearing God’s voice, you can listen to Newspring “Frequency” sermon series at newspringlive.com/watch-read/media

frequency hearing God sermon series

Day Twenty-Five: Don’t Forfeit The Reward

40 days of prayer devotion

by David Shannon Wooten – January 31, 2018

Day Twenty-Five: Don’t Forfeit The Reward

Galatians 6:9, Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.

Don’t stay weary.

Satan has only one passion, to wear you down so you will quit. He will useeverything he can to discourage and distract you. Your enemy eagerly desires for you to lose heart and lose faith. It’s his strategy. Thoughts and voices of giving up do not come from the people who love you and want to see you succeed. Thoughts like, “what you are doing is not effective”, “it’s not working”, “it’s not making a difference”, do not come from God.

God may redirect your focus. He may reorder your steps, but God will never burden you down to where you feel like giving up and quitting. And He most definitely will not make you feel insignificant.

Don’t fear, resist doubt and refuse to worry are consistent lessons throughout the Bible. Allowing the fear, doubt and worry to have conversations in your head will only lead to weariness, burn out and quitting.

Don’t stop doing good.

Doing good may be difficult, a sacrifice and an inconvenience, but it will always produce good results. When we feel like the task is getting difficult and we are tempted to give up, we must put the situation in proper perspective. Lance Armstrong said, “Pain is temporary, quitting is forever.” Enduring the struggle is seasonal before the reward comes. But if you give up it’s forever. You forfeit the reward.

Don’t give up on…

  • consistent prayer. Prayer will bring God’s instruction to your breakthrough.
  • applying the Word of God. Daily reading God’s Word will increase your faith and replace the wrong thoughts that bring weariness.
  • persistent worship. Worship will bring you into the presence of God. Satan and darkness will not hang out long in God’s presence.
  • trying to resolve the problem. God is using you to solve problems. God will lead you to the solution.
  • seeking the open door. God will open the door, but you have to be prepared and available to walk through it.

“The only way your reward will not come is if you decide to quit.”

Your time will come.

Keep sowing good seed. Keep being kind, show love, keep sharing Christ, keep teaching, keep coaching, keep parenting the right way, keep pursuing the dream God has placed within you. Your time will come. God is a rewarder. You will reap a good harvest from your good seed.

(Click here for devotion on “Your Coming Out With a Reward)


REFLECT:

What is God revealing about Himself through this scripture?

What do you hear God saying to you in this scripture?

How does this apply to your life?

Rephrase this scripture to a personal prayer for you. Give God thanks for how He is revealing Himself through this scripture. Request His help.

For further encouragement about prayer and hearing God’s voice, you can listen to Newspring “Frequency” sermon series at newspringlive.com/watch-read/media

frequency hearing God sermon series

Day Twenty-Three: Stretched But Not Strained

40 days of prayer devotion

by David Shannon Wooten – January 29, 2018

Day Twenty-Three: Stretched But Not Strained

Psalm 16:11, You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.

Stretch Incredible Hulk

I received one of my most favorite and memorable gifts Christmas morning
1979. The Stretch Incredible Hulk! Not only was it cool because it reminded me of my favorite TV show. This toy was begging this 7-year-old to test the limits of how far its arms and legs could be stretched. No matter how far I stretched the arms and legs of this Hulk, they would always go right back to its original form.

What’s Inside?

For those of us who have curious minds, we are thinking, “What’s inside?” Whatever they filled this toy Hulk with, it was durable and “almost” survived a 7-year-old.

Our circumstances, battles and tests of life will stretch us. Sometimes it feels like we are being stretched to the limit. But when we begin to take inventory of what is inside of us, we realize God is helping us to be resilient. What’s inside will determine our resilience. Bad attitude, hatefulness, grouchiness doubt and fear is not fruit that comes from the Holy Spirit. Being full of that type of attitude and mindset will cause us to be stretched out of place and possibly pulled apart. What’s inside us will help us not be “bent out of shape” for long periods of time. We know how to come back to our original form. A disposition of faith.

Be filled with joy.

Prayer and praise is so important, because it brings us into the presence of God. When we are in His presence He promises to fill us with joy (Psalms Joy16:11).

Psalms 28:7, “The LORD is my strength and shield. I trust him with all my heart. He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy. I burst out in songs of thanksgiving.”

Nehemiah 8:10b, “This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”

Joy makes you resilient. Joy gives you strength for the battle. Prayer and praise will keep your perspective right and will bring you joy.

Protect your joy. Don’t let it slip far from you. When you are filled with joy it builds you up so you can withstand the pressures from what’s around you.

The heat will not break you down.

Our battles will turn up the heat in our life. The heat will try to break you down on the inside. But if we are filled with good substance, we will not be easily melted by the battle.

  • Tin will melt at 449 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Silver will melt at 1763 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • BUT it takes 1948 degrees Fahrenheit to melt GOLD.

When God allows a greater battle, He has something GREAT to bring out of you.

God never allows us to go through tests without a plan and reason. He will never let a battle go wasted. If God allows the battle, He will not only fill you so you can withstand the stretching and pressure, He will bring something great out of it. Promotion comes through the pain and sacrifice.

“Don’t let pressure change you” is a post I shared about God being our Rock. Take a moment to click the link and let it encourage you to stand strong.

The pressure on the inside must be greater than the pressure on the outside. You are filled with “God-Stuff” and  He is very resilient.

1 John 4:4 You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.

sunset on water


REFLECT:

What is God revealing about Himself through this scripture?

What do you hear God saying to you in this scripture?

How does this apply to your life?

Rephrase this scripture to a personal prayer for you. Give God thanks for how He is revealing Himself through this scripture. Request His help.

For further encouragement about prayer and hearing God’s voice, you can listen to Newspring “Frequency” sermon series at newspringlive.com/watch-read/media

frequency hearing God sermon series

Day Twenty: Can You See Beyond?

40 days of prayer devotion

Day Twenty: Can You See Beyond?

by David Shannon Wooten – January 26, 2018

Genesis 13:14-15 – The Lord said to Abram after Lot had parted from him, “Look around from where you are, to the north and south, to the east and west. 15All the land that you see I will give to you

“That will never happen!” “That is not possible.” You have heard this statement. I’ve been guilty of saying it myself. How about you? This is a statement of unbelief and can be a real big problem when God is asking us to believe Him for a breakthrough.

Here are a few breakthroughs in history that people said would never happen:

That is not possible!

  1. The Light Bulb:  … good enough for our transatlantic friends … but lightbulb unworthy of the attention of practical or scientific men.  (British Parliamentary Committee, referring to Edison’s light bulb, 1878.) Everyone acquainted with the subject will recognize it as a conspicuous failure. (Henry Morton, president of the Stevens Institute of Technology, on Edison’s light bulb, 1880.)
  2. A/C (Alternating Current) – Fooling around with alternating current is just a waste of time. Nobody will use it, ever. (Thomas Edison, 1889.)
  3. Personal Computer: We have reached the limits of what is possible with computers. (John Von Neumann, 1949)
  4. Microchip: But what… is it good for? (An engineer at the Advanced Computing Systems Division of IBM, commenting on the microchip in 1968.)
  5. Data Transmission: Before man reaches the moon, your mail will be delivered within hours from New York to Australia by guided missiles. We stand on the threshold of rocket mail. (Arthur Summerfield, U.S. Postmaster General under Eisenhower, 1959.) Transmission of documents via telephone wires is possible in principle, but the apparatus required is so expensive that it will never become a practical proposition. (Dennis Gabor, Hungarian-British physicist, 1962.)
  6. Online Shopping: Remote shopping, while entirely feasible, will flop – Emailbecause women like to get out of the house, like to handle merchandise, like to be able to change their minds. (TIME, 1966.)
  7. AutomobileThe ordinary “horseless carriage” is at present a luxury for the wealthy; and although its price will probably fall in the future, it will never, of course, come into as common use as the bicycle. (Literary Digest, 1899.)

Can you see beyond?

God wants you to see beyond your current situation. Vision always begins and is stirred from seeing something outside the context of our current reality. God does not want to be constrained by reality. He’s looking for people who will believe that He is able to do the impossible. God placed Abraham in a context and asked him to see and believe beyond it. He will ask the same from you and me.

Ephesians 3:20 – Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us,

Can you see, ask, imagine what God wants to do in your life right now? Is it immeasurably MORE? Can you see beyond?

God wants you to see beyond


REFLECT:

What is God revealing about Himself through this scripture?

What do you hear God saying to you in this scripture?

How does this apply to your life?

Rephrase this scripture to a personal prayer for you. Give God thanks for how He is revealing Himself through this scripture. Request His help.

For further encouragement about prayer and hearing God’s voice, you can listen to Newspring “Frequency” sermon series at newspringlive.com/watch-read/media

frequency hearing God sermon series

Day Nineteen: Knocked Down But Not Out

Day Nineteen: Knocked Down But Not Out

by David Shannon Wooten – January 25, 2018

2 Corinthians 4:8-9 We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. 9We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed.

It is impossible to live without trouble or pain. Disappointments are inevitable. Pressure from situations can cause confusion. And there is a real spiritual enemy that desires to hunt you down and destroy your faith and purpose in God.

But God never leaves you without hope. He will not allow pressure to crush you. When your enemy is all up in your face, God is right there in his face. The battle may cause you to fall flat to the ground. You may be limping through your season, but God promises you that you will not be destroyed.

Don’t let the pressure take you out.

The Apostle Paul exemplifies how to go through stuff that knocks you down, but not allow it take you out.

  1. He doesn’t focus on his ability, but he puts confidence in the power of the risen Christ who is in him (verse 7). This is not only his focus, it is a declaration that comes out of his mouth.
  2. He protects his heart from getting weary (Verse 16). When we begin to lose heart, we become unfocused. Weariness will cause us to focus on the wrong things.
  3. He is determined to keep the right perspective (verse 17 &18). Paul clearly conveys wise perspective that these troubles are creating an eternal reward. He sees these troubles as a temporary nuisance because he sees the bigger picture. Our troubled seasons are a drop in the bucket compared to our entire lifetime. And our lifetime on this earth will be even less than the drop compared to eternity. What matters most is not a comfortable or a trouble-free life; it’s what was accomplished for eternity.

You are a Champion.

Paul understood what an athlete or a solider had to endure to be a champion.

  • Champions will focus on developing character not resumes. God cannot promote us beyond our character. Nothing develops our character more, than going through trouble and straining to keep the right focus and attitude.
  • Champions make decisions that create a desired future; not decisions that create a desired present.
  • Champions focus on HOW they go through hard-times rather than getting through hard-times.
  • Champions get up, not give up. Proverbs 24:16

You will get knocked down, but you don’t have to stay down. Get Up! Keep on! Embrace the power of your risen Christ who is in you.


REFLECT:

What is God revealing about Himself through this scripture?

What do you hear God saying to you in this scripture?

How does this apply to your life?

Rephrase this scripture to a personal prayer for you. Give God thanks for how He is revealing Himself through this scripture. Request His help.

For further encouragement about prayer and hearing God’s voice, you can listen to Newspring “Frequency” sermon series at newspringlive.com/watch-read/media

Day Seventeen: Bold Prayers Out Of Pain

Day Seventeen: Bold Prayers Out of Pain

by David Shannon Wooten – January 23, 2018

1 Chronicles 4:10, Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, “Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.” And God granted his request.

I don’t believe Jabez prayed this bold prayer with the intent of being someone who desired to be self-indulgent and hoard his riches. Verse 9 informs us that Jabez was an honorable man. In fact, he was more honorable than his brothers. God believed that Jabez would honor Him, so He granted his prayer.

Maybe it was the pain and brokenness that Jabez experienced in his past, which fueled his passion to see God do more with his future. Pain and brokenness has a way of either paralyzing us or breaking us out of our comfort zone so we can believe God to do more with our life.

Don’t let a setback, pain, brokenness or failure paralyze your faith or keep you stuck. God wants you to believe Him for more. He wants you to ask Him to fulfill and reach your ultimate potential and purpose. You were created for God’s Glory. Don’t settle for less. If we are going to cry out from the pain, then let us cry out to God with a bold prayer.

Your Bold Prayer

You can use Jabez’s prayer as a pattern for your prayer.

Father I pray…

  • All of Your blessings will come in to my life. Everything You have purposed and designed for me, I welcome and receive them.
  • You will expand the gifts and abilities You have given to me. Let me reach my ultimate potential. Expand my influence for Your Glory. Accomplish your perfect will in my life. Hold nothing back.
  • Let me never move out from among Your Hand of blessing and protection.
  • Keep me from temptation and deliver me from evil. Protect me from the thief who desires to strip your blessings and joy. Allow me to experience the joy of your blessings and the abundant life You give.


REFLECT:

What is God revealing about Himself through this scripture?

What do you hear God saying to you in this scripture?

How does this apply to your life?

Rephrase this scripture to a personal prayer for you. Give God thanks for how He is revealing Himself through this scripture. Request His help.

For further encouragement about prayer and hearing God’s voice, you can listen to Newspring “Frequency” sermon series at newspringlive.com/watch-read/media

Day Ten: Grow Exactly What You Want In Your Heart

Day Ten: Grow Exactly What You Want In Your Heart

by David Shannon Wooten – January 16, 2018

Ephesians 3:17, “Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong.

It takes some level of discipline to keep our bodies healthy. Saying “no” and resisting our desires to over-eat or eating too much of the wrong kind of food will help us watch our weight and keep our bodies healthy. Making discipline choices about exercise will help keep our heart, muscles and joints healthy. Living by a budget, not spending more than we earn and sacrificing to pay off debt will eventually reduce stress and position us for a better future. We may not always like making disciplined decisions, but we do enjoy the results.

Our spiritual life requires the same kind of discipline. If we are going to have faith to believe God and resist the negative thoughts from satan, then we will have to spend time in God’s Word and in prayer. A regular routine of reading God’s Word and deciding to apply it to your life will not only produce the right things in your heart, it will produce incredible things in your life.

Consistent prayer, receiving wisdom and direction from God’s Word and making disciplined decisions will help us take control of what we allow to grow in our heart.


REFLECT:

What is God revealing about Himself through this scripture?

What do you hear God saying to you in this scripture?

How does this apply to your life?

Rephrase this scripture to a personal prayer for you. Give God thanks for how He is revealing Himself through this scripture. Request His help.

For further encouragement about prayer and hearing God’s voice, you can listen to Newspring “Frequency” sermon series at newspringlive.com/watch-read/media

Day Eight: The Voice of God Falling On Good Soil

Day Eight: The Voice of God Falling On Good Soil

by David Shannon Wooten – January 14, 2018

Luke 8:8, “Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown.” When he said this, he called out, “Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear.”

Prayer prepares and positions your heart to hear God’s voice. Our heart determines how God’s words will produce in our life. Seed has the power to produce. The soil has the potential. If there’s a problem in the harvest, the problem isn’t with the seed. The problem is within the soil. God doesn’t have a speaking problem, we sometimes have a hearing problem. Prayer and our choices can prepare our heart as good soil to receive the seed of God’s Word. When we take God’s word in to our heart it has the power to produce supernatural results. What may be a limitation in the natural, when God’s Word is applied it produces supernatural results in our life. This is why the enemy wants to keep your heart contaminated, unfocused and deserted. He knows the potential of God’s Word sown in the heart of the one who is ready to believe.


REFLECT:

What is God revealing about Himself through this scripture?

What do you hear God saying to you in this scripture?

How does this apply to your life?

Rephrase this scripture to a personal prayer for you. Give God thanks for how He is revealing Himself through this scripture. Request His help.

For further encouragement about prayer and hearing God’s voice, you can listen to Newspring “Frequency” sermon series at newspringlive.com/watch-read/media

Day Six: You Are Planted Not Buried

Day Six: You Are Planted Not Buried

by David Shannon Wooten – January 12, 2018

God’s growth plan has a mixture of seasons that consist of darkness, sunshine, rain, cold and warm days. You don’t have to be confused about the season when you know you are in God’s care. I remember going through a dark season and thoughts from the enemy flooded my mind. I thought I had seen my best days. Fear came over me about my health and future. I thought I would forever be stuck in certain situations and would never see a breakthrough.  God reminded me that the dark season was just a growing season for me. God was helping  my “roots of faith” to grow deeper and stronger. He assured me, that I wasn’t going to face devastation with these overwhelming feelings of being buried. God reminded me, He planted me and that new life would soon come. I began to say to myself,

“My enemy told me this season of darkness would bury me. God told me I’m not buried, I’m actually planted. This season will pass and life will come again”.

God wants to remind you that He has you in His hand. He is the “Author and Finisher” of your faith (Hebrews 12:2). The good work He began in you, He will complete (Philippians 1:6). A season of life and fruitfulness will soon come again (John 10:10).

John 12:24, “Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.”


REFLECT:

What is God revealing about Himself through this scripture?

What do you hear God saying to you in this scripture?

How does this apply to your life?

Rephrase this scripture to a personal prayer for you. Give God thanks for how He is revealing Himself through this scripture. Request His help.

For further encouragement about prayer and hearing God’s voice, you can listen to Newspring “Frequency” sermon series at newspringlive.com/watch-read/media