Jerusalem or Bethlehem
The times we are in are not only distracting but quite deceptive. As children of God it takes a discerning and wise heart to navigate through the murky waters of this world. However, the Lord has placed abundant opportunities in our path but only the discerning and steadfast heart will locate it and be able to live in it. Thus,”Pay careful attention, then, to how you walk – not as unwise people but as wise – making the most of the time, because the days are evil. So don’t be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is.” Ephesians 5:15-17. There is emphasis on us in times like this to pay careful attention to everything that concerns us. We cannot afford to live thoughtlessly but aspire to know what the will of the Lord is and do it. What may seem good in our eyes may not necessarily be the will of the Lord for us. A lesson can be learned from the story of the three wise men (The Magi) in the nativity story found in Matthew 2:1-12. The Bible tells us that these wise men saw a star representing the birth of a great King in Judea and came to locate Him in order to worship Him. However, due to their mindset that the King will be naturally born in the palace, they headed for Jerusalem, the city of Kings. So many people believe there are certain locations they must be in for success to locate them; these locations are chosen based on their ideas and worldly reasoning. The truth however is that most locations peddled by the world are not necessarily the place God had earmarked for us to be blessed. It might look right, have the right ambience, in fact everything that governs the place points to sure successes for us but Heaven might be saying something totally different. Some have even went ahead to preach that no matter where you are, once you have the right idea, the place you are in will be a haven. If this were true, then we would not need faith and God will not emphasize to us that without Him we can bear no fruit. You might argue that He has given us all the necessary materials - all we have to do is to sow an idea. But friend, He must teach you which idea to sow, where to sow it and He is the one that will send both the early and latter rain to water the ground so the seed could bear fruit. No matter how much you work the Land, if He does not cause the seed to grow, that would be the end of the seed. We cannot live our lives based on our own ideas or principles but our lives must be guided by His Mighty Hand or we will be in big trouble. Friend, ideas do not affect our destinies, only the Word of God does. Our destinies are embedded in the Word of God not the other way round. The wise men followed the star and instead of following it to its resting place they allowed their minds tell them the next logical step to take. Immediately they entered Judea, they headed straight for the city of kings – Jerusalem! Alas, the King they were seeking was not there! Friend, where exactly are you located? Where you are right now and doing what you are doing on whose directives? How did you get to that location? Sadly, if you are not where you ought to be located, the blessings earmarked for you will not reach you and you cannot fulfil your purpose. Even if it does, it is but a fraction of what you should get and be. When the Scriptures were searched they discovered that Bethlehem (a lowly place) and not Jerusalem was where the great King will be born. Are you in ‘Jerusalem’ and hoping things will turn out well for you? Friend it is time to stand up and by the Spirit of God locate your ‘Bethlehem’ (land of bread – abundance) so as not to short-circuit your destiny and the blessings God had prepared for you before the beginning of time. The grace to do this is released to you in Jesus Christ name. God bless you.