The Seventh Time

Ever since I started playing baseball, from little league to college, I always wore the number seven. Whether because seven is God’s number or that seven is the number of perfection, I had always been fascinated with it. Even today, I still wear a chain around my neck with a baseball pendant and the number seven attached to it.

As we read the Bible, we see that there are many instances where in order for something to happen something had to be done seven times. Proverbs 24:16 mentions that even though a righteous man falls seven times, he gets right back up. Jesus shed His blood seven times in order that we might have a perfect salvation. In the first three chapters of Revelation, Jesus writes to seven churches addressing certain issues. These are just a few examples. I liked to point out three specific instances in further details that have stood out to me.

The first example is found in Joshua 6:2-20. God gave Joshua a battle strategy on how to conquer the city of Jericho that I don’t think Joshua was expecting. Sometimes God might tell us to do something that doesn’t really align with what we already had planned (See Proverbs 19:21). God told Joshua to have the people walk around Jericho once for six days, but on the seventh day walk around the city seven times. Sometimes you got to have patience and perseverance to just walk around your problem. I’m sure while the children of Israel were walking around Jericho, the people of Jericho were yelling at them, criticizing them, talking about how foolish they looked, maybe even throwing things at them. Whatever God has told you to do, do it. Don’t worry about how you will look, what other people may say or think of you. Just do it. It wasn’t until the seventh time on the seventh day that the walls of Jericho came crashing down. If at first you don’t see any results, if you don’t see anything happening, don’t give up. Keep going. Galatians 6:9 says not to grow weary in well-doing , for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we don’t give up.

In 2 Kings 5:9-14, we see the story of Naaman. Naaman was a very highly respected person. He was commander of the king’s army. He was a somebody. But Naaman had leprosy. On the outside Naaman looked great with his armor on, with his mask on, in front of all the people but on the inside, underneath all of that, he was slowly rotting away. What is it that you are covering up that is tearing you up on the inside? What mask are you putting on everyday? Naaman heard about the prophet Elisha that could cure him from his leprosy. So Naaman went to go see the prophet but he didn’t go empty hand. He brought many gifts with him to give to the prophet. In order to receive your healing, to get your blessing, to get your breakthrough, you are going to have to pay a price, you are going to have to put a demand on it. So Naaman arrives at Elisha’s house, Elisha’s servant comes out and tells Naaman that in order to receive his healing, he has to go wash himself seven times in the Jordan. Naaman was furious that Elisha didn’t come out to see him and that he had to go wash in the dirty Jordan. Sometimes we are looking for our breakthrough in a specific person or a specific place, but God wants you to look past the method to Him. I’m reminded of the story of a certain man being stranded at sea. He prays to God to come and rescue him. A boat comes by and asks the man if he wants to be rescued but the man tells them God is going to save him. Later, a helicopter comes by and asks the man if he wants to be rescued but the man tells them God is going to save him. Still stranded there, the man cries out to God “Why haven’t you come to save me?” God responds back to the man, “I sent a boat and a helicopter. What else do you want?” Don’t get so tied up in the person or method that you lose sight of God and miss out on your healing, blessing, or breakthrough. In 1 Corinthians 1:27 it says “God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.”

Lastly in 1 Kings 18:41-44, we see the story of Elijah praying for rain. While Elijah is praying, he tells his servant to go look  for rain. The servant comes back and tells Elijah he sees nothing. Sometimes people don’t see or hear what God has shown you or told you, but you don’t need to keep telling them about it to convince them. You need to tell them in order that you might have a witness when what God has revealed to you does happen. Seven times Elijah told the servant to go back and look. On the seventh time the servant finally saw a cloud, but he said it wasn’t very big. Elijah tells the servant to tell the king to get going now before the rain stops him from getting to where he is going. You got to start praising God for little victories in your life. Even though they don’t look like much to others and maybe even to you, if you don’t start praising God for them and get going toward your destination, you will be stuck where you are at and won’t reach your potential, purpose, anointing, calling that God has for you.

So start marching around your problem, stop looking for your breakthrough in a specific person or method, start praising God for small victories and get going toward your destination.

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