Do You Need a Breakthrough?
Why many Christians never get the breakthrough from God that they desire.
Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Video used with permission from The Beat.
Have you ever been in that season of your life when you were just longing and waiting patiently for God to do something in your life, whether in your relationships or your finances, or spiritually or at your church? And for whatever reason it is just not happening. Well, I believe that there could be a reason for that and I want to talk about that today.
Our story today comes from 2 Kings chapter 5. It's about a man named Naaman. I want to highlight three things about his life.
- Number one - I'm going to look at Naaman's reality.
- Second, I want to look at Naaman's response.
- And then finally, I want to look at Naaman's result.
Beginning in verse one, it says the king of Aram had great admiration for Naaman, the commander of his army because through him the Lord had given Aram great victories. But though Naaman was a mighty warrior he suffered from leprosy. I want you to notice here that Naaman had a lot going on. He was a great warrior, he was a military strategist, he had the favor of his boss. Everything on the outside looked good but there was one thing in his life that he needed a breakthrough for and that was leprosy. Isn't it interesting that God will oftentimes allow us to experience an unfulfilled desire for extended seasons because He wants to keep us dependent upon Him. In verses two through eight, Naaman discovers that there is a man that is able to heal him of his leprosy. Verse nine says "So Naaman went with his horses and chariots and waited at the door of Elisha's house." But Elisha sent a messenger out to him with this message “Go and wash yourself seven times in the Jordan River then your skin will be restored and you will be healed of your leprosy.''
Naaman’s response - five hindrances
Now I want you to pay close attention here to how Naaman responded to the command that Elisha gave him, because often this is the same way that we respond whenever God calls us to do something. It says in verse 11, "But Naaman and became angry and stalked away." And he says "I thought he would certainly come out to meet me" and "I expected him to wave his hand over the leprosy and call on the name of the Lord his God and heal me!"
The first thing that we see that Naaman did and often what hinders us from receiving the breakthrough, is he expected it to happen instantly. He says "Hey I thought that Elisha was not just going to send a messenger to me, I thought he was going to actually come out and meet me himself and just wave his hand and lay hands on me and I will be healed instantly." You know what? There's a lot of things that God may want to do in and through your life and it may not happen right away. It may actually take time. And often, because we're not willing to put in the time, we forfeit the breakthrough that God intended for us.
But the second thing that Naaman did that we often do is that he expected Elisha or God through Elisha to do all of the work. He says "Hey I expected Elisha to come out and just wave his hand and lay his hands on me and heal me and I would be good." Isn't that the same thing that we do? God may be calling us to take an active part in the breakthrough in our own change experience but we put it all on God and say "You know what, I expect God to do everything. I expect God to give me this job. I expect God to send me my wife. I expect God to send me my husband. I expect God to make this business grow. I expect God to grow my church." And God is saying "Hey, it doesn't work like that. I am asking you to take an active part in you experiencing the breakthrough that you want from Me."
The third mistake that Naaman made is that he assumed that whatever God was asking him to do would be convenient for him. It says here in verse 12, "Aren’t the rivers of Damascus, the Abana and the Pharpar, better than any of the rivers of Israel? Why shouldn’t I wash in them and be healed?” So Naaman turned and went away in a rage. He says "Hey, this isn't convenient for me. I can just wash in the waters of Damascus which are by the way, cleaner than traveling all the way to Israel and wash myself in the muddy, dirty Jordan River." He said “This isn't convenient for me.” Isn't it often that same thing that keeps us from experiencing a breakthrough? God may be giving us some clear direction. We say "You know what, God? I'm not comfortable with that. It stretches me outside of my comfort zone. This isn't convenient or easy for me to do." And because it's not easy for us to do we often forfeit the breakthrough that God wants to give us.
Naaman's fourth mistake is that he rejected the plan that Elisha gave him because it was unconventional. It didn't make sense. "Are you kidding me? I have to go down to the Jordan River and dip myself seven times. How is that going to heal me of my leprosy? That doesn't make sense, God!" And often that's the very thing that blocks us from getting the blessing that God wants to give us. God gives us a clear direction, a clear command, but because it doesn't make sense to us in our logical finite minds, we just dismiss it as if it's not God.
And then the fifth mistake that Naaman made is he rejected this idea because it was going to force him to humble himself. You know he was an esteemed person. He was a popular person. He was a well-known army commander. And for him to be seen humiliating himself going down to the muddy, dirty jordan river and dipping himself seven times was just beyond something he was wanting to do. And the Bible says because of that, he went away mad. Could it be that God is calling you to do something that may require you to humble yourself? Put down that pride. But if you do that, it could very well be the key that unlocks the blessing and the breakthrough that you've been waiting for God to give you.
We looked at Naaman's reality. We've also looked at Naaman's response. And now we're going to look at Naaman's result. It says in 2 Kings 5:13, "But his officers tried to reason with him and said 'Sir, if the prophet had told you to do something very difficult, wouldn’t you have done it? So you should certainly obey him when he says simply, ‘Go and wash and be cured!’" So Naaman went down to the Jordan River and dipped himself seven times, as the man of God had instructed him. And his skin became as healthy as the skin of a young child, and he was healed!”
The lesson here is clear. Often God is not asking or requiring you to do something big. He's just saying "Hey, I want you to take a simple act of faith, a simple step of obedience and trust Me to do the big things." Isn't it interesting that if we just do the little thing and leave the big things up to God, God is the God of breakthrough. God is the God of change. God will do the big things in your life when you take small steps of faith.
Used with permission by Global Media Outreach from Allen Parr. This article was first published as a video on The Beat.
Pray this week:
Forgive me Lord, for expecting You to act according to my will. I humble myself and commit to fitting in to Your will in this situation that needs a breakthrough.
What needs are you seeking God to fulfill? Let us pray with you.