Rest: Part 6

Brother Sikes wrote:


We must learn how to work while resting in the Lord (Hebrews 4:10,11). The scripture says, “The servant of the Lord shall not strive” (I Timothy 2:24). How much strife (striving) is in us? Striving is a product of the World’s System. When we leave being led of the Spirit, we automatically arrive at doing our own thing, a form of striving – “Except the Lord build a house, its builders build in vain.” When we cease our communication with the Holy Spirit and escape into what we are doing, not listening to Him, strife (striving) is upon us. Staying in the Spirit keeps us aware of God’s direction and far from striving. Adam went from a flow with God to “toil in the soil” after the fall (Genesis 3:17). What once came easy now comes with a great price. God wishes us to return to the pre fall state, where there is a flow in our lives.

Strife (striving) causes difficult circumstances in both relationships and inefficiencies in accomplishing our task. We easily escape into toil and presumption and soon begin creating Ishmaels. The ramification of this generally affects others, because we will always produce fruit that looks like us. When we touch the World’s System in this way, it releases the same spirit, the Spirit of the World, in those around us.

Our ultimate rest, which is the antidote to strife, is in finding out what God is doing in us, through us, with someone or some situation, and joining in that work (Jeremiah 6:16, Matthew 11:28, John 5:17)! Jeremiah 6:16 is essentially saying, find out where God is walking and follow in His footsteps. Jesus said in John 5:17, “I do nothing out of my own initiative.” Whatever Jesus did He did in the rest of God. He did not initiate the process Himself. He found out what God was doing in the situation and joined Him. If you want spiritual hernias all day long, initiate things God isn’t doing. Rest is found in discovering where God is already working and simply joining in.

A sure way to know where God is in any situation is to understand that God pays for what He orders. First and foremost, if He orders us to do something, He will provide us with the grace to do it, the finances to do it, and the people to do it. Ask yourself the question, what is He providing me in the way of relational resources, those individuals that are assigned to work with us on God appointed projects? What is He providing me in terms of financial resources, the monetary means through which to accomplish the task? If the above provisional resources are not in place, spiritually first and physically second, chances are God isn’t in it. Often God may be telling us that step one to accomplishing anything for Him is in appropriating the faith for the resources. My experience has been that the people will always precede the money. Those that come as result of direction from the Holy Spirit are spiritual sons; those that come as a result of the money are hirelings – know the difference!

When the cloud is moving, we must move with it, never nailing our tent pegs so deep in the ground that we are busy trying to get them out of the ground when the cloud and the crowd have left. We must be sensitive at all times when the cloud has moved (Exodus 13: 21,22). We cannot stay where the cloud was yesterday – we must go where it is for us today. The cloud is always, always out in front of us, never behind.

One of the greatest deceptions of the age is to teach Christians about faith without teaching them about strategy – strategy is an integral part of faith working. Strategy is God’s direction and “ordered steps” for us to know our part in His plan. Without strategy, faith is dead. Said differently, “Faith without works is dead.” Works in this scripture means God-appointed strategy. “With wisdom, get understanding” – Wisdom is the direction of God, understanding is the “how to.”

The book of Nehemiah is one of the greatest exposes’ on strategy in the bible. The things that burden us are often the thing God is calling us to do something about (See Nehemiah 1:1-4). Grasp this concept, “Problems guard Power” – the problems or burdens we face are often designed to give us power in that specific area. How is this so? Look at what Nehemiah did (Nehemiah 1:4-11). He prayed and got the strategy of God to overcome the burden/problem. The burden/problem Nehemiah faced was the Jewish remnant and their protection – He knew that rebuilding the wall around the city was vital for their protection. As he prayed he became empowered to accomplish the task by getting the specific strategy to overcome the problem. Did he face opposition? Daily he faced life and death circumstances, delays, deception, and supernatural forces allied against him. Unlike many in Christian circles today, he withstood mountains of opposition to take the mountain of his assignment. Opposition is a confirmation of God’s assignment, not a sign that God is not in it!

Several years ago, I felt a tremendous burden or yearning to develop a piece of software for my real estate organization. Though I knew little of how to accomplish this, I was ultimately successful by getting God’s strategy for the victory. If ever I am led to do another software project, I have now become empowered in that area as a result of my experience. The lion and the bear prepared David for Goliath. Interestingly, God will use our past to prepare us for our future.

When we have been given the strategy or wisdom to solve a problem, it is unlikely that the problem can have power over us again. The word tells us “we are not ignorant of Satan’s devices used to gain advantage over humans.” Christians are often guilty of praying for faith when in fact, they should be praying for strategy, or their specific part in solving the problem. The gift of discernment will clearly tell you when it is time to simply wait upon God or begin to pray for and enact a strategy.


While I do not feel that this word is for everyone, I do sense it is for those who have ears to hear it. Several years ago the Lord said, “Ignorance often comes disguised as tradition.” This very profound statement began to awaken me to things in my life keeping me bound and in some cases defeated, and since this writing is not about that particular revelation, I think the mentioning of it is important in embracing an understanding yet another way in which God speaks to his people. It is particularly relevant in this time of upheaval and change taking place within the church worldwide.

For years, I accepted the more traditional ways of God saying or speaking to me in a still-small voice deep within my heart. I would often extend myself past obedience awaiting His comforting voice to direct me. Of late, He has exposed yet another element of communication which I accept as normal, Godly, and accurate. This particular aspect of God’s communication originates from the Holy Spirit and is often aimed at the soul of a man: It comes in the form of restlessness, discomfort, and even anxiety. I have also determined through the direction of the Holy Spirit, that often this method of Godly communication is aimed at us when our soul’s traditions have built walls around us, walls that block the flow of the Holy Spirit to freely communicate with us.

In recent past situations God has used restlessness in specific areas of my life in order to introduce mammoth changes that were about to occur. My religious and often traditional mind-set fought against this, even feeling guilt and condemnation for the way I felt. At another point in my life, God spoke to me and said, “Anything growing will change, be open, be flexible, be willing to change.” As I pondered this, I soon realized that growth requires change and our basic human nature is to resist. There are many in the Body of Christ today who are sensing and feeling this restlessness and discomfort, even the desire for change. They sense that something is wrong but do not know what it is. These thoughts initially bring some degree of guilt but as they search their hearts further, they realize that what they are feeling is not out of order. They find that deep within themselves they are in conflict with the order of the present day church, especially those under a hierarchy absent of the five-fold ministry or freedom to arise to the calling within themselves.

God is a God of order and anything short of His order will not be blessed with His anointing and favor. The saints of God are feeling restlessness and seek destiny and divine purpose. The word of God is clear; the perfecting of the saints will come through the five-fold ministry. Without it, destinies cannot be fulfilled. We have come to an hour and time in which the Holy Spirit has increased His presence in our lives and the cry within us is to fulfill our calling.

The restlessness within each of us is directional. Listen, and you will be guided to the people and places that God has chosen to assist you in fulfilling your destiny. Recognize and remember that soul ties and traditions often impede progress and though we cannot speed up God’s timetable, we can slow it down.

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