6 X PRINCIPLES OF GROWTH
· God has created us to be productive, fruitful, to increase e.g. Jn 15:16.
· God offers us opportunity to share His work on the earth.
· Not to just be an ornamental plant - bring forth fruit; increase.
· E.g. Personal life; relationships; impact upon people.
· Theme 98: Gather and Grow Together
· Principles for growth and increase.
1. God is the source of your increase 2 Cor. 9:8
· 1 Cor. 3:6 Plant - water - God gives the increase.
· Don’t look to people, circumstances - recognise and look to God as source. E.g. Ps. 27:10 When father and mother forsake me the Lord will take me up. E.g. David Ps. 23:1 Lord is my shepherd - I shall not want or lack.
· Col. 2:19 Holding the head - increase with the increase of God.
· E.g. God created plants - Law - must live off soil, violate = die. Created from God - must live off him, draw life from Him.
· Cut off from God or potential is aborted.
· Our need for God is not an option - cannot flourish apart from God.
· Eph. 3:20 Able to do exceeding abundantly more - according to the power in us. Source of abundance is power of God’s Word and Spirit working within.
· E.g. Jn. 15:5 Vine and branches - He that abides in me and I in Him brings forth much fruit. Without me you can do nothing.
2. Desire God’s best for you - fulfill potential
· Ps. 37:4 Delight self in Lord and He will give desires.
· God plants desires in our heart - must recognise and cultivate.
· “What do you want?” - to Bartimeus - must own it.
· Mk 11:24 Whatsoever things desire when pray believe. We move towards the things we really desire by exercising faith.
· 1 Pet. 2:1-2 Lay aside - desire that may grow. Must want something enough willing to do something about it. All growth means change and adjustment. Some things to lay aside, other things to give self to.
3. Develop habit of hearing and applying God’s Word to life
· God’s Word is seed - release his life, power and ability in us if receive and respond to it - Not enough just to know it.
· Rom. 10:17 Faith comes by hearing = willingness to be changed - receive and respond.
· Living faith = power to see things changed comes by hearing.
· Living faith releases the resources of God into our situation.
e.g. Jn 2:5 Whatever He says to you do it - miracle of wine
e.g. Lk 5:5 Nevertheless at your Word - miracle of fish
· What does God have to say about you? your situation?
4. Use what you have - what God has already supplied
· Don’t focus on lack, inability, discover what have and put to use.
e.g. 2 K. 4:2 What do you have in the house - oil
e.g. Exod. 4:2 What is that in your hand - rod
· Sowing is key principle of increase - invest what you have and expect it to increase.
· Mk 4:24 Measure you give out - measured to you. He that has - more given, has not - taken away.
5. Develop practical steps for your growth
· Every big achievement must be broken to achievable steps.
e.g. Read Bible; Save $1000; Eat an elephant.
· Josh. 1:3 Every place - soul of feet shall tread - given. Land of inheritance possessed “little by little” (Exodus 23:30).
· Prov. 28:22 He that hastens to be rich - evil eye, poverty come on.
-no get-rich-quick schemes in God just sowing and reaping.
-No overnight success - result of years of labour.
6. Persevere - stick at it with confidence and expectancy
· Heb. 10:37 - 38
· Persevere = hold fast and refuse to quit - optimistic.
· Need perseverance in doing the will of God to get results. Pressure and opposition are normal - must face with confidence in God.
· Num 14a Giants are bread for us.
· Maintain expectancy of miracle, God coming through.
FOR DISCUSSION - Looking to God as the Source:
1. Review the six principles of Growth
2. Identify one area you desire to grow or increase in this year.
3. Identify what has hindered your growth in this area:
· Have you avoided personal responsibility for your growth in this area by expecting someone or something to “come through” for you.
· Are there any unresolved ‘hurts’, offenses because they have failed to meet up to your expectations?
· Are there any expectations you need to let go of?
· What action or change must you make to let go of these hindrances so you can move on and grow.
4. How can you turn your desire into reality?:
· What practical steps do you need to take?
· What part are you expecting God to play?
· What word or promise of God can you find to base your faith and expectancy upon.