They Will Soar On Wings Like Eagles
In today’s message, we’re going to continue the series of Soar with 3 key points to unburdening yourself so you can soar!
Isaiah 40:31 ESV but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.
What’s really important about that passage is understanding those who trust or wait are not passive, they are not just sitting back and waiting for God to come. They are actively moving toward what God has promised. Putting their faith into action and the promise is when we do those things, we will soar, we will rise.
Some of you received words a long time ago and you’ve yet to see it fulfilled. I want to assure you, God’s word will not return to Him void. What He has declared over you will be fulfilled.
God gave Joseph a dream of greatness and leadership. What happens to Joseph, he is sold by his brothers into slavery, wrongfully accused, imprisoned, and forgotten. Despite all these things, he eventually rises to fulfil the promise of God in his life.
Jesus himself said to Martha at Lazarus’s funeral, I am the resurrection and the life. Not long after that he is hanging on a cross, He dies, He is wrapped and put in a tomb. But after three days later he rises, and He fulfils it.
I want to encourage you, regardless of what the circumstances look like. Your life is going to soar if you would just stay in faith if you would just apply these principles – God is going to take you from where you have been and elevate you to where He has promised you to go.
Today I want to look at this scripture which I believe speaks to this:
Matthew 7:13-14 ESV Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.
I want to highlight three things that keep us grounded and keep us from soaring. I’m reminded by an incident a few years ago. I was travelling to Singapore and running late for my flight. Once I got there, I learned the 32kg weight limit I thought I had, wasn’t 32kg. It was much less! So I had to empty my bags of all the heavy things I could find. Boots, jackets, books - things I thought I would need and use. I ran to the checking point and could see the gate was closing and I’m running with all this stuff still. I’m the last one on the flight and only for people to give me death stares as I walk through. It reminded me about the difficulty of progressing when you have excess baggage.
Last Sunday, after our 5 pm service we had a three-on-three basketball competition for our young adults. Now I snuck in there with a couple of older gentlemen and played. I ended up living to regret it! I hadn’t played for a while and thought I used to play at high school I’ll be ok. But let me tell you there were moments when I would try to go up for a rebound. I would try to get up, elevate and soar, only to hear my right knee saying to my left knee. I don’t know but I think he’s going to end up sore! My lower back piped in there and said yeah, you’re not moving tomorrow morning. You are going to be staying in bed, because your body does not do this naturally!
All the while I’m seeing these young guys flying overhead all over me. It was a lot of fun, but I realised because there is some excess baggage (thank you isolation) I had trouble elevating, I had trouble moving. Just like it is in the physical I believe in the spiritual. God is saying there are some things that may be in your life that is preventing you from going up. Preventing you from going to new heights and places He wants you to go, and these things are keeping you grounded.
Me running to the airport with too much baggage reminds me this is one of the reasons why that scripture says the road to destruction is wide. One of the reasons I believe it’s wide is because there are people travelling with all this excess baggage and unwillingness to lay it down and travel the narrow path. Unwilling to put down and surrender some of the things holding them back. Let me tell you three things that will keep you grounded and from soaring. The first is unforgiveness.
In Matthew 6:9-15 Jesus is speaking and he says pray in this way.
Matthew 6:9-15 ESV Pray then like this: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
If you forgive others their trespasses, their reckless and willful sins, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others, nurturing your hurt and anger, the result is that it interferes with your relationship with God and your Father will not forgive your trespasses. This is huge.
Unforgiveness is one of the biggest things that will keep you from moving forward. Jesus is not just speaking to anyone, he is actually speaking to those who have gathered to follow him! He’s teaching them how to pray, but notice the special emphasis when you forgive others. God the Father forgives you. But if you refuse to forgive them, you are not forgiven.
I recall a great story of a women named Corrie ten Boom, she hid Jews from the Nazis in World War 2 who were imprisoning them in concentration camps. She spoke of a particular prison camp called Ravensbrück, where she and her sister Betsy were imprisoned and treated extremely harshly by the guards. Her sister, unfortunately, passed away in the camp. Corrie was well known for her compassion and forgiveness even to those who were extremely cruel to her. Shortly after the war she was released and God began to use her all around the world, her primary message was one of grace and forgiveness.
One time she’s in Munich, Germany speaking to a packed hall about the grace and forgiveness of God. How by His forgiveness we can forgive others. The meeting finished and many people were milling around. There was a gentleman she saw from the distance, Corrie immediately recognised him, she froze when she saw him. He was a lot older and was now balding. But he was one of the guards that was at the concentration camp and would treat her and her sister particularly poorly.
He came up to her and didn’t recognise her. He said I heard in your talk you mentioned the concentration camp. I happened to be a guard at the time but since the war I have become a Christian and God has forgiven me and I have repented. He said to her fraulein, I just need to know will you forgive me and with that he stuck out his hand to her. Corrie writes in her book that she just froze and could not move because all the painful memories and anguish came flooding back.
She knew she had to do what God told her to do, she prayed a quick prayer and said Lord I can’t do it. But through you I can, you are going to have to give me the strength. So mechanically and coldly she put out her hand, and said I can do that much. As their hands touched and grasped, she said all of a sudden, she felt the presence of God flooding through, feeling at peace and calm. The voice of God the father saying “well done, that’s how my children behave”.
After that they embraced and she said I learned that forgiveness is not a feeling it is an act of a will, willingness to forgive is something that you decide to do, even though your feelings may not.
One writer wrote it this way, the injury that was caused against you may not be your fault. But your recovery is your responsibility, the offence, the abuse, the mistreatment, the betrayal, the hurt. Recovery is our responsibility, the willingness to lay it down at the feet of Jesus so he can clean us, purify us and take us where we cannot go on our own.
The second piece of excess baggage is unbelief. In Hebrews 3:15-19 it says today there is still opportunity if you hear His voice. Do not harden your heart as they did when they provoked God in rebellion in the desert of Meribah. God would not allow them to enter His rest.
Hebrews 3:15-19 ESV As it is said, “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.” For who were those who heard and yet rebelled? Was it not all those who left Egypt led by Moses? And with whom was he provoked for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies fell in the wilderness? And to whom did he swear that they would not enter his rest, but to those who were disobedient? So we see that they were unable to enter because of unbelief.
Those who disobeyed and would not listen to His word would not enter his rest because of unbelief. An unwillingness to trust in God. This is talking about the Israelites as they came out of Egypt and God had promised them the promised land. They went into the promised land and saw giants, walled cities and came back to give a negative report. Saying we can’t go in there are too many obstacles. Their unbelief was what kept them out of the promised land. In that group of 12 leaders who went in, there were only two, Joshua and Caleb who believed saying we can do it. They were the only ones to inherit the promise from God.
2 Corinthians 1:20 reminds us about this. All the promises of God In Christ are yes and amen. What we need to understand is that yes is spoken from heaven. God is saying yes that promise is yours, yes that word is for you. The amen comes from us in response of agreement to what God has promised. The bible says it glorifies God when we amen what God has spoken, it gives him glory.
2 Corinthians 1:20 ESV For all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory.
So, all that doubt, all that fear, all those questions of whether maybe I can’t do it. I don’t know how it’s going to happen, but I just believe God amen. I don’t know how this marriage is going to be restored. I don’t know how my body is going to be healed. I don’t know how my finances are going to recover. If we just amen the promises of God, that he will provide for us, that he will heal us, that he will make a way for us that glorifies God amen.
A great German Evangelist, Reinhard Bonnke was talking one time about his calling to the nation of Africa. Praying once he said, Lord why did you choose me for such a heavy assignment? God responded and said to him, you actually weren’t my first choice. In fact, you weren’t my second either. So, Reinhard found he was the third choice, but he was the first to say amen to what God was telling him. Yes, we can see the nation of Africa saved for Christ. The others said it’s too huge, I won’t do it, I can’t do it. But it was Reinhard who said amen.
Unbelief is the thing that will keep us. But if you would just come into faith in agreement with God, you will see the fulness of what God has promised you.
The third excess baggage that will keep us from soaring is shame. In Genesis 3:6-9 we see shame.
Genesis 3:6-9 ESV So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths. And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. But the Lord God called to the man and said to him, “Where are you?”
Adam And Eve's Shame
God called to the man, where are you? I want you to note that after they disobeyed God and took from the forbidden fruit and as they ate their eyes were opened and saw they were naked. They were ashamed, so they covered themselves and later when God came looking for them – they hid.
Here’s the thing that puzzles me. There was only two people and yet they were still ashamed, these were perfect people. Eve hadn’t bore any children, there was no issues physically. They would have been perfect. Yet when sin came in they were ashamed, they attempted to cover themselves up. This tells us that shame doesn’t just say what you did is bad, it actually says you are bad, you are no good. What it did was force them into hiding. It forced them away from God and to hide.
When I was preparing this message I felt the Holy Spirit say there are some people hearing this right now, you hear the promises, you hear the prophetic words, you do want to soar, you do want to go up but there is something that is happening in your life. There is shame that is attached because of something that’s happened in the past and you are telling yourself there is no way I can move forward, there is no way to break free this feeling of one step forward and two steps back. I just can’t seem to go. It’s because of shame and that feeling of condemnation.
There Is No Condemnation For Those In Jesus
I want to tell you today there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. Jesus when he was crucified he wasn’t covered, he was totally uncovered. The Apostle Paul calls Adam the first Adam, he calls Christ the second Adam. It’s a contrast because the first Adam took from what he wasn’t meant to and he was naked and covered himself. But the second Adam He reached out to obey God the Father, I believe he was uncovered to break the power of shame off us. That he bore all our shame, all our guilt, all those painful things that we think disqualify us.
I want to tell you there is a promise for you in Isaiah 61:7, it says this.
Isaiah 61:7 ESV Instead of your shame there shall be a double portion; instead of dishonour they shall rejoice in their lot; therefore, in their land they shall possess a double portion; they shall have everlasting joy.
I believe that there are some listening and reading this now, this is your day to have that shame broken off your life. You are no longer going to be bound and restrained by shame. You are going to go free, onwards and upwards to soar because of the word of the Lord over your life.
Maybe is an act of forgiveness that you need to give someone who hurts you, maybe it’s some offence that you were feeling against someone who betrayed you, lied about you, gossiped about you. Whatever it is this is your moment. Maybe there is just doubt that has riddled you and you think you just can’t do it. God said I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
Do you have unforgiveness in your heart you need to release? Is shame burdening you? Is unbelief plaguing you life?
Psalm 139:23-24 ESV Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting!
Receiving A Double Portion
I want you who are reading or listening to pray right now. Because I believe that the power of God is coming to you today for those bound by shame, that is going to be broken off and receive a double portion. The power of God is going to meet you right where you are now and break those things off. That you are going to soar to new heights in Jesus name. Right now lay it down forgive, there is freedom and liberty where the Spirit of the Lord is. There is healing for the pain you have been harbouring. That unforgiveness is released and healing comes. Those struggling with unbelief, believing that it is possible, that God is injecting you with faith right now. Forgetting those things behind and moving forward. Finally you who have been weighed down by shame, we thank you Lord God for your grace that covers us right now, thank you that you bore our shame on the cross so that we never ever have to bear it again. We thank you that there is forgiveness of sins, that you are cleansing us of all unrighteousness. The old is gone and the new has come, we thank you today is a new day of salvation in Jesus name.
I want to pray also for anyone who might be watching or reading this, who might be far from God or maybe you never made a decision to follow Him. This is your day, we want to lead you in a prayer. If that’s you repeat this prayer after me.
Dear Lord Jesus I repent from all of my sins, I receive your grace. I thank you Lord God that you have forgiven me. I make you my Lord, my Saviour and my best friend in Jesus name. The bible says that by the convictions of our hearts and the confession of our mouth that salvation comes and so if you did pray that prayer please let us know by the comments and we'd love to connect with you! God bless you.