But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.
— 1 Corinthians 12:18
When I look at my life, I see that God has always put me in the right place to prepare me for my next step in ministry. For example, before Denise and I began our teaching ministry many years ago, God placed me under a pastor who taught the Word with great depth and authority, pulling insight from the original Greek text of the New Testament. Over the course of several years, I worked under him as his assistant, and he disciplined me and taught me how to dedicate myself to the serious study of the Word. God used that Bible-rich environment to prepare Denise and me for our itinerant teaching ministry, and it continues to impact our ministry today.
When Denise and I began traveling and teaching all over America, we made dear friends with pastors across the country who would later support us when we moved to the USSR. At the time, we had no idea that those men and women of God and their congregations would become our financial lifeline when we later pursued the call of God overseas. But if we hadn’t traveled and cultivated those relationships in those early years, we wouldn’t have had the connections to support God’s next assignment for our lives.
Being in the right place at the right time is vital to your preparation!
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So what environment are you in? Are you where God placed you in the Body of Christ, or are you where you want to be? Remember, God knows what you need and is working a plan to fully develop the gifts He’s placed in you, but you have to allow Him to place you in the environment He knows is best.
First Corinthians 12:18 says, “Now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.” This word “set” is a translation of a form of the Greek word tithemi, which means to place, to arrange, or to position. This tells us that God knows where we need to be and when we need to be there. He has a plan for us to be in specific places at specific times in life. And First Corinthians 12:18 say that God has a plan and a place for “every one” of us! The words “every one” in Greek include every single believer, no one excluded!
It might be that God has asked you to go somewhere and you think, Lord, why in the world are You taking me there? Just relax and stay in the flow of the Holy Spirit’s leading each day. As you keep the ear of your spirit attentive to His voice, your steps will be ordered of the Lord (see Psalm 37:23)
Perhaps the Lord has told you that the place you’re at right now is a step toward fulfilling your destiny but not your final destination. If that’s the case, make sure you stay put until the Lord tells you to change direction. Your present position may be your personal training ground to prepare for the next season, helping you learn how to submit to authority and serve others.
Do you find it difficult to discern what direction the Holy Spirit is leading you? It may be that you’re too busy. Or there may be so much mental noise and clutter that you can’t easily hear what God is saying. Perhaps the influence of the people around you is hindering you from stepping out in a certain direction or from developing certain gifts. Or maybe you’re too comfortable where you are, and your own complacency is keeping you from taking a step that requires stretching your faith and totally depending on God. Regardless of your situation, it’s vital that you remain open to the place where God wants to position you. The right environment is a major key to finding and fulfilling His will for your life.
Don’t be afraid to obey the Lord. He’s not going to hurt you or mislead you. He’s trying to equip you. If you are careful always to be where you know God is leading you to be at any given time, He will use your experience in the present season to prepare you for the next step of your calling.
I encourage you to allow God to prepare you to do His will. Be flexible and pliable. Allow His Word to dwell richly in your life, and submit yourself to the leaders He has placed over you. You will find that by doing so, God will bring you into the fullness of His will, and you will see your next assignment through to completion!
MY PRAYER FOR TODAY
Dear Father, as I walk through this time of transition, I know that You are preparing me for the next steps. I thank You, for I know that You are committed to preparing me for the next season of my life. You are helping me get ready by placing me with the right people in the right places to receive the training I need. Please help me yield to and follow Your leading. I fully trust You to order my steps according to what pleases You. My times are in Your hands, Father. Help me be flexible and pliable toward the work You are doing in me as You faithfully complete that which You have begun in me. I know that if I am obedient and follow Your voice, You will empower me to see and to fulfill the high calling You’ve placed on my life!
I pray this in Jesus’ name!
MY CONFESSION FOR TODAY
I confess that I know the voice of my Good Shepherd and the voice of a stranger I will not follow. My heavenly Father is ordering and directing my steps so that I will walk with the wise and be wise. As He positions me to stand among the right people, with great ease He is directing my steps to receive the training I need so I can do what the Lord has called me to do. I do not falter; I do not fear. He who has called, equipped, and justified me is near to me and has clothed me with His very own self. Therefore, having done all to stand in this time of testing, I will pass every test and stand fully approved before Him!
I declare this by faith in Jesus’ name!
QUESTIONS FOR YOU TO CONSIDER
- Has there been a time in your life when God was preparing you for a future assignment that you didn’t yet know about? When was that, and how did God use that time in your life to prepare you for the future?
- Can you think of a time when God put you under someone’s spiritual influence — or put you with a group of believers — and it was part of your training for what you were going to do later? When was that season of your life? In what way did their influence uniquely equip you for what God called you to do?
- Are you in that place of training and preparation right now? As you look at where you are and what you are doing, can you see the hand of God guiding and leading you to get you ready for the next phase of your life?