A boy and his father were visiting a candy store one day and the owner of the candy store generously said to the boy, "Get yourself a big handful of candy from the candy jar. Go ahead, it’s alright."
But the little boy would not do it, even after several invitations.
Finally the store owner said, "Here son," and reached his hand in the candy jar and handed the little boy a big handful of candy.
Later the father asked the boy, "Son, why didn’t you reach into the jar yourself and get some candy? Were you shy? Embarrassed?"
The little boy replied, "Ah, dad. The store owner’s hand was a lot bigger than mine!"
In Genesis 39:21, we see the Favor of God in demonstration in Joseph’s life, in spite of him being in prison: "The Lord was with Joseph and showed him mercy, and He gave him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison."
No matter what happened to Joseph (betrayal by his brothers, sold into slavery, falsely accused of a crime, cast into prison), Joseph trusted in the Lord and kept his heart and attitude right. God's favor kept lifting up Joseph until he occupied the highest office in Egypt, directly under Pharaoh.
It was not about where he was but where he was going!
More important, it’s not about where you are but about Who you know, Who you are serving!
In John 7:37-39, Jesus promised that living water would flow out of your life.The Holy Spirit would make the presence and power of God to saturate and overflow your life.
Too many Christians are living in Lack instead of in Abundance. They are living in Poverty instead of Provision.
And it’s not just about Money!
Don’t let the Devil rob you of your Blessing.
Don’t let the Devil rob you of your Birthright (Esau lost his birthright because other desires were more important to him at the time.)
Don’t let the Devil rob you of your Inheritance.
Instead, be Filled with the Spirit! Be Filled to Overflowing! Be Overflowing with a bountiful reservoir, not an inadequate cistern or well.
What are the cisterns we build in our lives to try and supply our own needs?
Stuff, possessions. Relationships. Ambition. Having people think we’re Good. The need to Perform.
These cisterns and wells are inadequate! They will never satisfy, let alone Overflow.
We want to Overflow with true, living water.
We need continual Inflow in order to Overflow.
How can we be Filled in order to Overflow?
1. Live the Word.
a. Read the Word.
Know the Promises God has for you. Learn about the Spiritual Authority He has for you
Read it Daily, not just on Sundays at church. Read it for your benefit, daily nourishment.
Read it Systematically. Don’t just pick out favorite verses. Read through entire books of the Bible. Read through the Bible in a year. Learn the whole counsel of God.
Read it Early. Begin your day with the Lord.
b. Meditate on the Word.
Don’t just read it once and leave it behind. Enjoy it; savor it as a fine meal. Think about the Word all through your day. Have it guide you all through your day.
c. Apply the Word.
Possess your possessions. You might be thinking, "If God made a promise to me, why don’t I just get it automatically? Shouldn't it just show up?"
God gave Israel the "Promised" Land. Did it just show up one day? No! They had to fight for it! They had to take possession of their possessions. Apply the Word! Let it move from your mind into your life and affect your behavior.
2. Fellowship with the Father.
a. Do it Daily.
Spend time each day in prayer and communion with your Lord. Don't just spend time with the Father once per week or month or longer. Spend time each day in your Father’s presence. Develop the relationship; enjoy the communion.
b. Do it Early.
Don’t let it get squeezed in or out of your busy day. Don't try to crowbar it in sometime. Instead, plan your day to spend time with Father First. Give Him the first part of your day.
So far we have been looking at choices that will fill up our own hearts. They enrich us and help us grow spiritually. Now let's look at how we can be a blessing and give to others.
3. Fellowship with the Family.
a. Gather together each week with your brothers and sisters for Worship.
Don't do it just once per month or every other month. Gather regularly, each and every Sunday if you can. Yes, it is essential to worship individually all through the week but there is something special that happens when God's people gather together.
And be Ready to worship! Don’t be tired because you stayed up too late Saturday night. Don't be distracted, thinking of all the things you need to do later that day or week.
Give God your best! You want the Best so first give Him the Best. What you sow is what you will reap.
b. More than just gather together to worship, get ready to Plug In.
Use the gifts and abilities God has given you to make a difference. Church ministry is not about a professional minister/s and everyone else is a spectator and consumer.
We All get to be involved in Ministry so jump in with both feet!
Give of your Time, Talent and Treasure. God uses you and me to make a difference!
c. Serving is all about Giving and Giving is where the Overflow begins.
If you try to hold it all to yourself, you will lose it. But if you give it away - if you give yourself away - you will receive blessing, favor, overflow from the Spirit.
4. Declare the Good News.
a. Don’t be an Undercover Christian.
During Jesus’ day, there were many secret believers. Why? Fear! They were afraid of those in authority who might put them out of the synagogue. The Bible says they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God. They had misplaced priority!
What are the fears we face today? Fear of ridicule, mockery, push back. Don't let fear of man keep you from declaring the Good News.
b. Boldly proclaim the Goodness and Salvation of the Lord!
Has the Lord been Good to you? Tell someone! Has His salvation made a difference in your life? Tell someone!
Be an Ambassador of Reconciliation.
Declaring the Good News of Christ's Gospel is all about Giving and Giving is where the Overflow begins.
TE Lawrence was a British archaeologist, army officer, diplomat, and writer known for his friendship with the Arabs. In fact, he became known as Lawrence of Arabia.
When Lawrence was in Paris after WWI with some of his Arab friends, he showed them the sights of the city.
Do you know what impressed them the most?
It wasn’t the Eiffel Tower or the beautiful Notre-Dame Cathedral. It wasn’t even the Louvre Museum, the most visited museum in the world.
No! It was the faucets in the hotel bathroom.
The Arabs spent much of their time turning the faucets on and off. Being inhabitants of the desert, they were amazed that they could get all the water they wanted with just the turn of a knob.
As they were preparing to leave the hotel and return home to the East, Lawrence found his Arab friends in their hotel bathroom with wrenches, trying to disconnect the faucets. They thought if they took the faucets home with them, they would have all the water they wanted.
Lawrence had to explain to them that it wasn’t the faucets that provided the water. It was the massive reservoirs to which they were attached.
So it is with the Living Water of the Holy Spirit which Jesus promised to us. Unless we’re connected to Him, simply going through some sort of spiritual motion will not get us anywhere.
It is not about the faucets; it’s about the reservoir.
It’s not about cisterns and wells but about rushing rivers and gushing waterfalls.
We want to Live in the Overflow!