I have never worked a corporate job. I have worked at Daycares, in homes, and as a waitress, but I’ve ever joined a company with the intent to climb the ladder of success. I know people that have and I know that my husband is in a job now where he is being diligent in his work so he can eventually move up. Not out of greed or position but because he has a God-dream for the marketplace. He’s not afraid of hard work and he’s not afraid of long hours because he knows that as he is faithful God is faithful. Many people don’t want to move up. They stay in their comfort zone because it is easy and they are riding the wave of familiarity. Why strive or take on more when that just requires more work?
I can see why promoting at a job might be a responsibility many don’t want. It means more hours, potentially less time at home and it could mean more stress. But what about new levels in the Spirit? Do we ever run from those because we are afraid of what it will cost? Do we stay at our current state because we are scared of what’s ahead? New levels, new devils, isn’t that what they say? What if it’s time to shake things up?
Promotion Equals Equipping
Battle. It is not a pretty word to think of and it is more real for some than it is for others. Whether it is a part of our everyday life or whether it is only a term we know of, battles take place all the time. Real ones are happening all over the world, and so are spiritual ones. The thing about both types of battles is that they require the right equipment. Generals do not send their elite forces in with pistols and hand knives. That would be irresponsible. They send in their highly trained with weapons that match their skill set.
Our General does the same thing. As we grow and mature in the spirit He is constantly equipping us with better gear. We grow out of certain weapons and into others. He does not allow us to move forward if He does not feel that we are properly equipped. We can be in situations where we may think we can’t handle it but God knows all and He knows that those hard times cause us to be refined to grow stronger. Fire hurts, it burns, but refinement only comes as things are stripped away.
For many years I have heard that saying, “new level, new devil.” It was just a passive statement for a long time until lately when I really started to think about it. As I evaluated it and also heard some also teachings concerning it (thanks, Kris Vallotton!) I realized that is not a true statement. I believe as we promote hell does get mad and the devil will do all he can to prevent us from growing, but all of hell can’t stop God. New levels may provoke hell to more action but it also means we have new tools to wreak havoc on satan and all his minions.
Running From Promotion
When I think of favor or promotion two prominent bible characters come to mind: Joseph and Esther. Both were taken from their comfort zones and thrown into a life they were not familiar with. Joseph was sold to be a slave in Egypt and Esther was taken to be a candidate at the palace. Joseph went from servant to prison to right hand of Pharoah. Esther went from maiden to Queen. Both accelerated from nothing to power and both saved their people from complete destruction.
What else do they have in common? They didn’t run from their promotion. They used where they were at, where God has placed them and remained faithful. Esther could have remained quiet and just hoped for the best for herself and forgotten about her people, but she didn’t. She risked her life to raise her voice for those that could not speak for themselves. Joseph could have decided that God had forgotten him and kept his mouth shut about the men’s dreams while in prison. But he spoke up and through that, he was brought to Pharoah and used to feed the people for years to come.
God places us strategically. I don’t believe things just happen or “fate” works for us. God uses us. The place we are in right now is a place where God wants to use us but the choice is ours. Promotions mean laying things down, cutting ties to relationships that are not spiritually healthy, letting go of old ways of talking and acting. Promotion brings us one step closer to the Father and as they bond is formed we are drawn into deeper intimacy with heaven. The things that were once filling, leaves us empty because all that will satisfy is His milk and honey. His word becomes our delight and His presence is what we begin to crave.
We can run from the outstretched hand of the Father calling us to greater things in Him or we can run into it and embrace the Potter’s hands.
Running can become a lifestyle if we let it, but God’s arms of love will always be waiting for us to stop and turn. Embracing new levels and new growth may seem intimidating but as we begin to allow God’s gentle spirit to walk with us it is invigorating! Our world, our families, our cities, our friends, won’t be changed by mediocre baseline belief. Transformation is not coming to places where they have settled for their comfort level. Transformation is coming to places where they have embraced promotion and decided it’s worth the cost. Jesus didn’t die and ascend again for us to settle, He did it for us to go from glory to glory and never look back.
Promotion in Jesus means living from heaven to earth. We aren’t trying to hang on until we get to glory we are allowing God’s glory to move through us daily. Why wait until the end for transformation to take place, why not walk in it right now?