For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us. Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and has anointed us is God, who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.
–2 Corinthians 1:20-22
The mind is a piece of wild land, a slice of territory carved out and handed to us to do what we want with. The problem isn’t the size of the land – everyone gets the same area to deal with, more or less. The problem isn’t what other people dump on that land, the litter of casual thoughtlessness and malice that accompany so many interactions in the world of men. We can’t legislate for how others treat us, good, bad or indifferent.
No, the problem is that we simply can’t be trusted on our own to cultivate a garden from the wilderness, let alone prevent that fertile land from falling into further disuse. We are a people living in the Kingdom of Heaven, reborn, dead to our old selves…but in the many ways that count, nothing’s changed for us. We still think in the same old, tired way. We consider proof and evidence to supersede the reliance on trust and faith: even when we know, in our heart of hearts, that proof is a moveable feast and that faith is forever. We focus on the problem at hand, not who we are in dealing with the problem. We ask for deliverance from adversity, not who God is for us in adversity.
The resources of the Kingdom of Heaven are infinite, but they’re not indiscriminate. Just as in real life, throwing money at an issue doesn’t automatically solve it, so too asking God to apply a blanket approach to favor doesn’t actually do us any favors. Preventing people from littering doesn’t remove the responsibility to cultivate and take care of the land, and asking for more land when we find it so hard to look after the land we’ve got seems utterly futile. Fundamentally, if our minds are truly our own—and the Father created us that way—then we really need to learn to maintain them properly. And guess what? There’s provision for that.
Our circumstances don’t dictate our salvation: our salvation dictates our circumstances. There’s nothing that can happen to us that a Christlike affect can’t strip down to its essence and turn around, and part of the basic training for Christianity is to focus on being identity conscious, not problem focused. God’s resources come attached to that identity in Christ, not to a set of circumstances in our lives.
Since God’s primary purpose is not to relieve us from a momentary affliction, no matter how severe, but to allow our becoming more like His Son, then it can clearly be seen that we’re following a steep learning curve throughout life. Fortunately, God never allows affliction to us that we cannot handle: He’s good like that. He’s immensely proud of the people we’ve become, which is why the promise and the provision attached to our identities in Him is so perfectly laid out and structured for us personally.
But in order to transform our problems into provision, we need to see ourselves as the Father sees us. Knowing who we are in Heaven is powerful stuff, an overwhelming force to deal with in whatever circumstance we find ourselves in. The person we are known to be in the Kingdom becomes the seedbed for miracles to occur, and that seedbed can be choked with weeds and stones or blossoming with lush, vibrant life. We need to choose for ourselves: the wasteland or the garden?
When we know Heaven’s perspective on us, we can step into line with that perspective. Once we’re looking in the same direction, at the same elevation, along the same angle, we’ll be able to see the same thing: put like that, it’s basic stuff. Seeing things—including ourselves—from a Kingdom perspective is a joyously refreshing, exhilarating experience. It allows us to cultivate our minds, channeling a mindset of inheritance in the Kingdom, and once we have that mindset, the jargon and terminology that it brings affects us deeply. There’s no quit in the language of Heaven, no negativity, no fear or doubt or indiscipline.
Think that simply focusing on ourselves in Christ and Christ in ourselves can’t perform such shocking realignments of self and purpose? Think again. Our identity in Christ has all the faith we require, all the creativity we need and all the passion that we need to succeed and to thrive in any situation, any circumstance. You’ve heard it said that where there’s a will, there’s a way? God’s will is the way.
This is why we are given Scripture-based words of inheritance. This is why we are given prophetic words through ministry. They are designed to confront us with our true identity in Christ, and to expand our partnership with the Holy Spirit.
The person we are known to be in the Kingdom allows deliverance: from negativity, from struggle and from a mindset of poverty. That doesn’t necessarily mean a lack of resources: rather, it speaks of a complacency in accepting meager possibility, agreeing less than we should, living happily with a failure to access the potential within us. From the point of view of God, we are nothing but potential waiting to be realized. From His perspective we have realised it, so He comes from an outcome-based point of view: He’s seen it. He just wants us to see the same thing.
When doubt flowers in our hearts and minds, we become unsure. We allow fear to take root. We abandon cultivation of the garden, and sitting back, watch the wilderness overrun it again. That’s not the place that God sees for us. It’s irrelevant how large our parcel of land is, and it’s not important who decides to throw their garbage over the wall into our pathways. What is important is how we react to that, and our mindset in continuing to cultivate as God has shown us. In partnership with the Spirit, we can fill the seedbed to bursting with that potential, and live long enough in the Kingdom to see those miracles blossom and fill the air with the scent of Spring.
For more resources on provision, identity and Kingdom living, check out Graham’s CD series Radical Permission. Radical Permission goes in depth on how to access all the majesty and favor of the Lord. Living your life with this perspective will cause you to overcome, rise up and step into a whole new way of thinking. Radical Permission is available as CD and MP3 at Brilliant Book House. Don’t miss it!