Here in South Africa we have been out of lock down for a while and the momentum of life is picking up. The impact of COVID is still being felt, but for many of us, life is semi- “back to normal”, except for the masks of course. A few months ago I shared that I felt we were in a low-tide and that we were to prepare for a new season, to prepare for the momentum to come. I have really had a sense that this new season is coming and it is time to start picking up momentum again.
But why do we need to start building momentum?
Sometimes, something that you want to do, or really want to see happening, stands in front of you like an enormous wall – an enormous task – a barrier that cannot be overcome. When you watch a hurdle race, you will notice that the hurdler does not jump over a hurdle by standing next to it, instead the momentum of the hurdler is what carries them over. To overcome obstacles of the economy, workplace, society, business, employment, loneliness and all that the past few months have brought us, we need to gain momentum in order to scale over obstacles, hurdles or walls in our lives, as we go out to do business, school, life, society, church etc.
Joshua 6:1 has some interesting insights into building momentum. In this chapter, Joshua and the people of God are camped outside Jericho. Jericho is described as “Now Jericho is tightly shut up.” Then the Lord says to Joshua “See, I have delivered Jericho into your hands…” For God it is a done deal, it is not a reality yet, but it is His intention for Jericho to be delivered into Joshua’s hands so that the people of Israel can move on into the Promised Land.
They have God’s word. What words do you have from God that He has given you?
Joshua undoubtedly pointed at the walls as a barrier to his obedience. God then gives Joshua instructions as to how he and the people are to take Jericho. Putting it simply, it is: first do this for 6 days – then on the 7th day – do it 6 times and on the 7th time have the priests blow trumpets and the people give a loud shout. Simple really!
Actually the strategy is for the people to build momentum: get momentum of activity going and then combine it with faith.
The trumpets represented the Word of God, which is the authority of the believer. God’s word and promises is the basis for our belief and our authority. The shout of the people represents their faith and confidence in the Lord and in His promises.
Before the Israelite people could spiritually stand in confident faith on the Word and authority of God, they had to start by working at building momentum in their faith which is embraced in action and leads to action.
It took them six days to get this momentum going. It required 1) changing their mental attitudes when people jeered at them from the wall, 2) it meant looking at God’s word to remind themselves of the promises of God and their future. 3) They looked at their history again to remind themselves of Who He is and what He is capable of and how faithful He had been to them while they were in the desert for 40 years. 4) Building that momentum over those six days, required His enabling power on the days they were tired, and 5) mental perseverance to keep at it – keep going in His will, keep staying on task, keep working, trusting and building momentum to scale the obstacle.
Building momentum requires some changes that have to happen in our hearts and minds, as our minds are renewed and our faith strengthened. This change has to translate into activity, where our faith is shown by what we say and do.
Momentum, once it is built up cannot easily be stopped. It is the momentum of the hurdler that carries him over the hurdle. Momentum enables the scaling of barriers that may at first look impossible to overcome.
Think about it, God did not give them the last days’ instruction on the first day outside the walls of Jericho – they had not built up momentum yet. God knew that once they had momentum, their faith and trust in the Lord would enable them to continue and get breakthrough and then the supernatural power of God could be released on a faith shout of final effort.
What is your barrier? Perhaps it is starting a new business, finding a job, making new friends, loosing weight, building an exercise routine, writing a book, renovating the house, busyness, exhaustion, lack of discipline…
We look at these barriers and we tell ourselves to accept our barriers and learn to live with them. We settle for what we already have. Imagine if the Israelite’s had settled next to Jericho, they would have missed out on the promised land that God had in store for them. God does not want us to settle for less.
Step out in faith and start gaining momentum. As you move with momentum, God will meet your faith.
- Re look your routine to ensure that it is balanced with time for God, family and myself in that order.
- Embrace good disciplines, particularly getting into the word and regular prayer.
- Consider a new bible study plan that will refresh your faith
- Make plans, there are still 62 days left to 2020. Make them count, build some momentum.
- Strengthen important relationships and make some connections
- Review the decisions you took during lock-down, when you were in low tide, preparing for momentum. Make sure you stick to them and don’t slip into old habits.
- Don’t pick up baggage that you previously put down, that will slow you down, or drag you to stop.
- Get spiritually fit, start to pray and read scripture. Pray some crazy prayers.
- Look for fresh opportunities to fellowship with believers and strengthen each others faith.
- Praise the Lord, embrace joy and promote peace, this is exactly what God wants us to do.
Father, thank you that You never intend for our lives to stand still, go backwards or shrink. Instead You want us to go forward in faith, break barriers and take new ground in faith. Thank you that You have plans for my life and that You have promises and ideas about the future. Help me to get moving, to put a fresh momentum to my faith and start putting action, words and thinking to my faith. I declare that I am building momentum with the help of Jesus.
P.S. Be sure to look at some of the links I have put in above. xx