WISDOM FOR LIVING DEVOTIONAL
AUGUST 7, 2020
TOPIC: YOU’RE NOT FINISHED BECAUSE GOD IS NOT FINISHED WITH YOU YET!
BY T. O. BANSO
“Then I said, Alas for me – for I am finished. I am a foul-mouthed man and I live among a foul-mouthed people” (Isaiah 6:5 J.B. Phillips).
Sometimes we go through some experiences in life that seem as if we are finished. However, as children of God, we must never think hopelessly or take drastic actions. We must look unto God, who can turn the most hopeless situation around.
In 1 Kings 19, when Jezebel threatened to kill Elijah, he probably thought he was finished. He fled and wanted to die. He didn’t commit suicide, but he asked God to kill him. “And he prayed that he might die, and said, ‘It is enough! Now, LORD, take my life, for I am no better than my fathers!’” (1 Kings 19:4 New King James Version).
This was Elijah that God had used to defeat the 450 prophets of Baal at Mount Carmel! This spiritual feat made the people fall on their faces and declare, “The LORD, He is God! The LORD, He is God!” (1 Kings 18:39). After his victory in the contest at Mount Carmel, Elijah had ordered the execution of the prophets of Baal. Which of his fathers did anything close to this? Yet, in his low point, he said he wasn’t better than his fathers. Death became attractive to him.
That’s what happens to some people. When it seems as if they’re finished, suicide becomes attractive to them, or they are drawn into some extreme actions. This is because they exclude God from the equation.
Ahab reported the incident and the execution of the prophets of Baal to his wife, Jezebel. This development irked Jezebel. She was provoked and threatened to kill Elijah. On hearing this threat, Elijah fled.
All Elijah needed was God’s perspective of the dire situation he found himself. After he fled and eventually had a fellowship with God, it must have become obvious to him that his prayer point was wrong. You’ll remember he prayed that God should kill him as he wasn’t better than his father. This is how many people pray the wrong prayer points in their low points, thinking that they are finished. God showed Elijah that he was not finished neither was He finished with him.
God sent him back to his ministry with new assignments to anoint Jehu the son of Nimshi as king over Israel and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel Meholah as a prophet in his place. God also corrected his erroneous belief that he was the only prophet left and the other prophets had been killed. He told him He had reserved seven thousand in Israel, whose knees had not bowed to Baal, and every mouth that had not kissed him (1 Kings 19:15-18).
Elijah’s ministry was not over after all. He wasn’t finished. Don’t let Satan tell you that you’re finished. Don’t let situations and circumstances tell you the same lie. As long as God is on the throne and you’re His child, you have faith in Him and you obey Him, you’re not finished.
Unless you’ve reached the end God has for you, nobody, and nothing should say you’re finished. “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11 New King James Version). You are not finished because God is not finished with you yet. You’re not finished because you’ve not finished your assignment!
Maybe you’re a businessman, student, minister of God, or whatever. What is your current challenge making you think you’re finished? Don’t think or say that. Take the matter to the LORD. “Cast your burden on the LORD, and He shall sustain you; He shall never permit the righteous to be moved” (Psalm 55:22 New King James Version). 1 Peter 5:7 says you should cast all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.
Maybe you’re in debt, or you are sick, or things are not working the way you wanted or had thought, or you’re not getting the expected results; don’t agree with your situations or Satan that you’re finished. As it is often said, “It is not over until it is over.”
Tell Satan and your situation that you’re not finished because God is not finished with you yet. Proverbs 24:16 says, “For a righteous man may fall seven times and rise again, but the wicked shall fall by calamity” (New King James Version).
Prophet Micah said, “Do not gloat over me, my enemies! For though I fall, I will rise again. Though I sit in darkness, the LORD himself will be my light” (Micah 7:8 New Living Translation).
You are not finished because God is not finished with you yet. You may be down, but you’re not yet out because God is not through with you yet. Job said, “If a tree is cut down, there is hope that it will sprout again and grow new branches. Though its roots have grown old in the earth and its stump decays, at the scent of water it may bud and sprout again like a new seedling” (Job 14:7-9 New Living Translation).
In Acts 27, everyone on board the ship taking Paul to Rome thought they were finished. They had been in danger on the sea because of a violent storm and had not eaten anything for a long time. “Now when neither sun nor stars appeared for many days, and no small tempest beat on us, all hope that we would be saved was finally given up” (Acts 27:20 New King James Version).
This dangerous situation was better imagined than experienced. They all thought they were finished. Nevertheless, God intervened because of Paul. His angel assured Paul they were not finished; nobody would die. Therefore, Paul stood up to encourage them.
Paul said, “And now I urge you to take heart, for there will be no loss of life among you, but only of the ship. For there stood by me this night an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I serve, saying, ‘Do not be afraid, Paul; you must be brought before Caesar; and indeed God has granted you all those who sail with you’” (Acts 27:22-24 New King James Version). Eventually, all 276 people on board were saved because of Paul.
Jonah said in Jonah 2:7, “When I had lost all hope, I turned my thoughts once more to the Lord. And my earnest prayer went to you in your holy Temple” (The Living Bible).
During one of Paul’s missionary journeys, which took him to the province of Asia, he and his team thought they were finished because of the hardships they suffered there. Paul and his team thought they would die, but God wasn’t finished with them yet. “I think you ought to know, dear brothers and sisters, about the trouble we went through in the province of Asia. We were crushed and completely overwhelmed, and we thought we would never live through it. In fact, we expected to die. But as a result, we learned not to rely on ourselves, but on God who can raise the dead. And he did deliver us from mortal danger. And we are confident that he will continue to deliver us” (2 Corinthians 1:8-10 New King James Version).
Put your confidence in God when it seems as if you’re finished. You will bounce back by His power. If it’s your sin(s) that brought you into such a situation, repent and ask God for forgiveness. He has promised to forgive. “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us” (1 John 1:8-10 New King James Version).
In Isaiah 6, when Isaiah saw the vision of the LORD and heard the cherubim cried to each other about His holiness, he acknowledged his sinfulness and said he was finished. “Then I said, Alas for me – for I am finished. I am a foul-mouthed man and I live among a foul-mouthed people” (Isaiah 6:5 J.B. Phillips). Did you see that phrase, I am finished?
However, after admitting his sinfulness, one of the cherubim cleansed his tongue with a lump of burning coal picked up with a pair of tongs from the altar, and his guilt was removed. Your sin doesn’t mean that you’re finished. God won’t throw you to Satan! If you acknowledge your sin and repent, He will draw you close to Himself, cleanse you, and use you again if you submit to Him.
In verse 8, when the LORD asked whom He would send as a messenger to His people, Isaiah, who had earlier said that he was finished, answered, “Here am I! Send me” (verse 8b New King James Version). God wasn’t finished with him yet. He made himself available and God sent him to deliver His message to His people.
Don’t listen to the lie of Satan that you’re finished, no matter how low life challenges have brought you. You may have stumbled or even fallen, but you’re not finished. God has not changed His mind about your destiny. He is interested in you; He is still committed to His plan and purpose for your life.
He is the potter; you’re the clay. If you trust in Him and obey Him, He will shape your life to achieve His desired intention (Isaiah 64:8; Jeremiah 18:1-4). Don’t lose hope. You’re not finished because God is not finished with you yet.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto you today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and resurrected the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank you, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like the palm tree and grow like the cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The LORD be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Father, I thank you because I’m not finished; thank you because you are not finished with me. In the name of Jesus, I recover from my setback; the devil shall not keep me down. I arise from the fall of the past. My current challenge is not my end in the name of Jesus.
(For over 300 in-depth and powerful messages by T.O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President, Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
Phone No: +2348155744752, +2348033113523
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