If your dream doesn’t scare you, it's not big enough.
Samuel Lee Bowman
Runner’s Prize: 4 Doors to Abundant Living
Want to move from cycling through life paycheck to paycheck to living in abundance? Here’s what you do; open your Bible and find people in there who had abundance and see how they did it. Here are four things you do that produce abundance from the life of Peter, who followed Jesus, denied Jesus and then shook the world for Jesus.
It’s based on 2 Peter 1:11 – For in this way the entrance into the kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will be abundantly supplied to you.
Peter was so abundant in what he did that all people had to do was get close enough to him that when his shadow passed over them they would get healed of sickness. (Acts 5:15) Now if you could find a doctor like that, the waiting room, the building and the parking lot would be full. However, Peter’s shadow couldn’t do a thing, but if you got within a shadow’s distance of Peter a transference took place. Now that’s abundance. This same level of abundance can come to any kind of calling and gifting, even in you.
Peter’s calling was leading people to Jesus, teaching them and restoring them and he did it in abundance, so let’s look at what he says about how to do it. Turn in your Bible to the New Testament, to 2 Peter 1:11. It says,
“For in this way [the way to get abundance Peter has just explained in this chapter] the entrance [the way] into the eternal [never ending] kingdom [everything God has for you] of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ [the God of everything] will be abundantly supplied to you. (NASB, brackets are author’s words added for clarity of application).
This says there is a way to abundant living and that way is provided for you – in abundance. So, when the verse says “For in this way” what way is that? Let’s go back to what is stated before that and see. There are Four Doors that lead to abundance clearly stated in verse one and two of this chapter. Let’s go back and look at them:
Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. 2 Peter 1:2
Door 1 – It’s Through Jesus our Lord: Abundance is a person. Get in right relationship, or alignment with Jesus and you get in line with abundance because He is everything. He made all things, from Him all things come, so get in line with Him, know who He is, how He does things and you get in line with an abundance. Being with Him teaches you what real abundance is and being with Him transfers abundance. (Verse 1)
Door 2 – It’s Through Grace: For you to walk in abundance you need to know your contract of grace. Under the law you earn abundance. Under grace you receive abundance. In the flesh you work hard, sweat, and toil for abundance. Under grace it comes as a gift from being in right alignment with your Daddy, Abba Father, who is Jesus. Under the covenant of grace even your mistakes are used by God to teach you so that even your shortcomings work in your favor bringing you to abundance. Under the law the way is narrow and few find it (Matthew 7:14), but under the covenant of grace the way is made abundantly clear and readily available.(Verse 2)
Door 3 – It’s Through Peace: When you know and walk in your grace covenant then you begin to be at peace with God, at peace with yourself, at peace with your life and what happens? You rest. When you know your Daddy has your back, when you know your Father is going to provide for you, then what do you do? You rest. You stop striving and earning and you start receiving. Supply then comes as a gift because He loves you. (Verse 2) Knowing you have a God that will supply abundantly for you, is very restful.
Knowing your grace covenant and resting in it is so vital that Peter prayed that his readers be multiplied in these two areas: grace and rest.
Door 4 – It’s Through Knowledge: If you knew how to abound you would really be abounding. Because you are not yet where you want to be you know that you need to learn more. You need to know what you don’t yet know. (verse 2)
Grace multiplies knowledge because it sets you in the best position to receive. When under stress your brain tightens up and doesn’t process well and so new insights and ideas, wisdom about which way to go, is restricted. Dr. Caroline Leaf says in her book, Switch On Your Brain, that stress closes down the brain. Knowledge flows so much better and is retained longer when you are relaxed, than when you are stressed. (Verse 2) Wisdom is directly connected to being relaxed. Do what you love and you will love to learn. Love expands. Revelation knowledge is how to you get to practical, working knowledge. God has to open your heart, then your mind and then He can release new ideas about how to succeed.
To go you need to grow. You grow best in rest. Rest is the fertile soil of knowledge. Nothing brings rest like knowing how much your Daddy, who is going to provide for everything you need, loves you so much that He is going to be giving you gifts of abundance.
Now look at verse three, and you’ll love this: after knowing your grace covenant, resting and increasing knowledge, then you arrive at where He is has given you all things you need in life.
“His [here’s being in right connection and alignment with Jesus] divine power [to get and live in a continual flow of abundance] has granted [there’s your grace covenant] everything pertaining to life [there’s your abundance] and godliness [the only thing better than getting what God has is to actually become like Him] through the true knowledge [it’s not just enough to know stuff, you have to know it’s true] Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. (NASB, author’s words added for clarity added in brackets]
The last line tells you clearly He doesn’t call you to abundance because of something that’s in you, but it’s all about what’s in Him, You don’t have to create it and support it. It comes to you as a flowing gift as you are supplied by:
1) Connecting with Jesus, and being rightly aligned with Him,
2) Knowing your grace covenant, so it’s all coming by gift, not by earning,
3) By being totally at rest, and peace, relaxed, knowing that God can and will show you the way, so that
4) Growing in true knowledge, knowledge that really works can flow into you and show you the way.
This is your track to abundance. Connect, covenant, rest, grow, receive. This is the Divine pattern to the life you dream of, to the prize God has shown you.
New Vision Will Turn Your World Upside Down
Back in the early days of the space program, NASA designed an experiment to determine the physical and mental effects spatial disorientation might create in astronauts as they experienced the weightless environment of space. NASA needed to know if the environment of space would have some unexpected negative consequences that would endanger the astronauts or their mission. Would they be unable to function or experience some debilitating reactions that would incapacitate them? So, NASA scientists outfitted astronauts with goggles that flipped everything in their field of vision upside down. The astronauts had to wear the special goggles nonstop, 24 hours a day, 7 days per week, no matter their activity, even when asleep.
An Amazing Change
At first they displayed stress indicated by elevated blood pressure and respiration, but they gradually adapted. On the 26th day of the experiment, something amazing happened for one of the astronauts. His world turned right-side up again even though he continued to wear the goggles. Between days 26-30, the same thing happened to all the other astronauts.
What the scientists discovered is that, after 26-30 days of this continuous stream of new input, the astronauts’ brains actually created neural pathways that “rewired” their brains to see their worlds normally again. Then NASA repeated the experiment with a slight change. This time some of the astronauts took the goggles off for a short period of time partway through the experiment. When they put the goggles back on and left them on until the 30th day, their worlds were still upside down, but when they continued on, at 26-30 consecutive days wearing the goggles, the same thing happened – everything was suddenly right side up again.
What can we extract from this NASA experiment concerning having a mission statement? A mission statement will help you see things a new way, and while at first it may be disorienting, later it will enable you, like the astronauts, to soar to new heights! A well crafted vision statement can help you start a new life, take your business to a new level, change your marriage, eliminate old destructive habits, in short; forge a new path.
After 30 days of conscious, intentional, deliberate thought and effort it gets easier and by 90 days the mission statement will become a permanent part of who you are – a new direction, a new habit, only this time it will be one that’s serving you and moving you toward your goals. After a short time of living continually with your mission statement your brain will begin to kick in and create new paths toward your dream.
Nature abhors a vacuum and releasing a bad habit leaves a void that will be filled with something. So, if you do not consciously replace a habit, and intentionally choose a new direction you will cycle back to old ways of doing things and get the same old results. A vision statement will supercharge your brain to:
- Focus on the dream
- Accept a new direction
- Set priorities about what will take you your new direction
- Provide motivation by finding reasons to go the new direction
- Know what to say yes to
- Know what to say no to
- Grow, seek out new knowledge and ideas that fulfill the new mission
- Measure your progress
- Keep your heart and mind on the prize
In short, after thirty days of living with a new mission statement the mission will begin to manifest because your brain now accepts it as your path and is helping you go that way.
John Maxwell says, “Movement with intentionality creates possibilities.” A mission statement puts your intentions into a precise destination. It puts your destination into precise words and speaking your dream is the first step in moving toward it. A mission statement is like giving your internal GPS a precise destination that your mind and body will begin to follow.
To think positively about your possibilities you must be able to imagine yourself in the future. Dr. Caroline Leaf says, “Our brains may have stamps from the past, but they are being led by our expectation of the future.” A car has a bigger front window than a rear view mirror because where you’re going is more important than where you’ve been.
Write a mission statement and live with it for ninety days and you will turn your world upside down.
Helping men achieve the life they dream of – at home and at work with biblical wisdom and practical strategies that produce endurance and results