BEFORE YOU ASK FOR MORE
Written by: Mateo Palmitier
More. It’s a simple word, but it carries a lot of weight. And over the past several years it seems as if “more” has been the resounding cry of the church. Everywhere I go I hear people asking for more. More of Him. More revelation. More opportunity. More wisdom. More resource. More interpretation. More, more, more, more, more…
The thing is, this prayer, this cry, the want for more is a good thing. It’s a great thing actually! It means we recognize that there is more to God than we have seen. There is more wisdom for Him to share, and more testimonies yet to unfold. There is more.
However, a few months back I was spending time in the word and I found myself so incredibly convicted over what I was reading. It got to a point where I had to stop and repent because I realized there was something off with the way I was living. To sum it all up, I learned this: There is a prerequisite to more. In other words, before we receive more, something must take place, and that something is stewardship.
In simplicity stewardship can be defined as the careful and responsible management of something entrusted to one’s care. So the question we must be asking ourselves before asking Him for more is, “What am I doing with what’s already been entrusted to me?” And it may be that you have to ask another question in tandem with the first in order to really figure things out, and that question is, “What has been entrusted to me?”
You have been given something. You have been entrusted with something. Perhaps it’s a revelation. Perhaps it’s an instruction. Perhaps it’s a relationship or a duty. Whatever it is, the Lord has entrusted you with it not just to know it, not just to have it, but to do something with it. Truth is not simply something we read and move on from, but is designed to be actionable and applicable. The reason this is so vitally important is because of James 1:22-25, which reads,
“Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it - not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it - they will be blessed in what they do.”
Let’s for a moment just look at that last sentence: They will be blessed in what they do. Wouldn’t you love for this sentence to be a description of your life? That in whatever you do, you are blessed. I don’t know about you, but my first thought is, “Sign me up Jesus! I want that life!” And the thing is, He wants to give it! But, this promise is conditional. It’s not conditional upon God and His end of the bargain, but upon us and our willingness to do what the first part of this passage says. So let’s break it down…
James 1:22 says this, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.” This verse alarms me for a variety of reasons. First of all because it is a warning. We are warned to not be deceived. Anytime a warning is given, it is given with purpose and intentionality. You do not warn someone if there is nothing to be warned about, you only warn them if there is reason for warning. The very fact that we are warned not be be deceived should wake us up to the reality that it is possible for us to be deceived.
The second reason this verse alarms me is because deceived people do not know they are deceived. This by nature is the definition of deception. No one knowingly and willingly walks around claiming to be deceived, they can’t, because deceived people don’t know they are deceived.
So, if we are being warned to not be deceived, yet deceived people don’t know they’re deceived, how can we be sure that we ourselves are not in deception? It would be very proud of us to think that we are above the possibility of deception. Rather, I think it would be very wise and humble of ourselves to take a step back and ask ourselves, “Am I walking in deception?”
The thing about this question, although it’s rooted in wisdom, humility and teachability, is that it’s still the wrong question to ask. Why? Because if you ask yourself, “Am I deceived,” you will naturally be inclined to answer, “No.” And why is that? Again, because deceived people do not know they are deceived. The more appropriate and helpful question to ask yourself would be something like this: Am I doing what I have heard, or have I only listened to the word? In other words, have I merely listened to the word, or have I put it into action?
The key to figuring out if you have begun walking in deception is to simply assess if you are walking out what Jesus has asked you to do. The reason this is so important is because the Holy Spirit does not want to lead us into deception, He wants to lead us into all truth (John 16:13). The cry for “more” is a noble one, but in my experience I have found that the Holy Spirit will refuse to give us “more” at the cost of our deception. He won’t do it. It’s not His job. He leads us into all truth. And for that reason, we often fail to see the “more of God” due to our own negligence rather than His unwillingness to give it. He is willing.
The key to your breakthrough is to ask yourself, “Have I applied what has last been prescribed?” If the answer is no, then go back and do the last thing Jesus asked of you. Too often we are waiting for a new direction from the Lord, but He is waiting on us to do something with His last direction.
Do you want more revelation? Well what have you done with the revelation that’s already been given you? If nothing, apply that revelation to your life and watch new revelation unfold. Are you stuck in your finances? What was the last thing He asked you to do financially? Did you do it? If not, do it now and see what happens. Scripture was not God-breathed so that we could have ideals to mull over, but so that we could apply God’s breath to our lives and watch our lives come to life.
MORE is a noble prayer. It’s real and it’s available. So continue to ask for more, but do not neglect what’s already been entrusted to you. Continue in it, and more will come.
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