The Provision of God
The Example of Jesus
This message is about learning to work within the provision of God. We see a great example in Jesus Christ. Before Jesus started his ministry he had good parents to whom he was subject (Lk 2:51), he had a good teacher in his Father (Is 50:4), he had a forerunner (Lk 3), and most of all he had his Father’s daily direction and fellowship (Jn 17:13-21). And with these he started his ministry.
He didn’t have a vehicle, he didn’t have a place to lay his head, he didn’t have a building, and he didn’t have ministry assets. However, he had the power of the Holy Ghost, he could preach and teach, and he knew what he was doing. He had all he needed. He got up a little following. And he traveled from place to place preaching, teaching, and healing. When he died, the last five assets he owned, the clothes on his back, were taken by the soldiers. He died penniless.
God’s Provision May Seem Meager
The provision of God may seem meager – Paul was hungry and thirsty, 2 Cor 11:27. He had been abased and he had suffered need, Phil 4:12. It surely didn’t seem like God was taking very good care of him. However, he had Christ and Christ was all he needed, Phil 4:13. When God seems to short your supply, just remember that he is showing you that Christ is all you need.
When Israel went out into the wilderness, they didn’t have food or water. But they had the word of God. God told them and Jesus showed them that man shall not live bread alone but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. Learn the lesson. The Lord gave them manna and water out of the Rock to feed their hunger and quench their thirst. The provisions were there and they were sufficient.
God’s Provision May Seem Abundant
The provision of God may seem abundant – 2 Cor 8:12-15. God gives an abundance to you so that he can use you to give it to someone else. When you understand that your abundance is for someone else’s need, God blesses both the giver and the receiver. In addition, he gets the glory and receives the thanksgiving of many.
In Acts 11:27-30 there was a dearth in the land that affected Judea worse than other regions. So, the saints sent relief to the brethren that dwelt in Judea. This is how God takes care of those needs, Lk 6:38. He uses men to do it. The giver is blessed with cheerfulness and fruit. The receiver is blessed, as well. In Acts 20:36, it’s more blessed to receive than to give. They are both blessed but the giver gets the bigger blessing.
The Provision of God is Always Sufficient
The provision of God is always sufficient – 2 Cor 9:8-11. You must know this passage is true and you must believe it. There will come times when it may not seem God is going to come through for you. But he said he would, and so he will.
That widow that fed Elijah had meal and oil every morning. She couldn’t see God’s provision the night before, but it was always there in the morning. Quit worrying because you can’t see what you’re going to need for tomorrow.
We must learn to live within God’s provision. That’s the key. Don’t obligate God to cover your excess spending. Live within your means. The trouble when God’s provision seems insufficient is that you’re looking for what you want rather than what God has given you!!!
It will take wisdom and faith to see God’s provision when it isn’t apparent. Hagar despaired of life when she and Ishmael ran out of water. In fact, the well was there, she just couldn’t see it.
Paul wanted God to remove the thorn in his flesh. God said, instead, “My grace is sufficient for thee.” When Paul quit looking for what he wanted and started seeing what God had provided, he rejoiced. He took pleasure in his infirmities from then on. He found that when he was weak, then he was strong through the power of Christ and the grace of God.
Conclusion: God’s provisions are always sufficient. Get used to living within his provision instead of your desire.