When my great grandfather was a small child his parents owned a pub down on the docks in Cardiff. Sea captains and sailors would often stay there when docked. One day there was a particular sea captain who came into the pub. Picking up my great grandfather and sitting him down on the bar he laid out before him a series of coins from a farthing through h’apenny, penny, silver threepenny bit, sixpence, shilling, florin and ending with a gold guinea, the most valuable of the lot. The sea captain told the small boy that he could choose any coin that he wanted and keep it for himself. Having never seen any coin worth more than a sixpence and not knowing there were more valuable coins available to him on that bar my great grandfather quickly chose the sixpence and put it in his pocket.
At the start of this year God told us that if we want to experience His glory we cannot stay in our comfortable places, we must position ourselves differently. He spoke to us again and said that He is calling us into a future joy that we will only receive through radical sacrifice of present pleasures. He would ask some of us to give up promotions, cancel holidays and give sums of money that we’ve never given before in order to be thrust further into His will. God’s word is that His eyes are on All Nations Church and if we will set our hearts on Him and seek His presence we will see His glory and receive his anointing as we follow his Kingdom purposes.
Unlike my great grandfather in the story, this is not a time for you to set up camp around your past experiences and testimonies. As amazing as some of them may have been, they are meant to tell you what God is like, not limit you to what He will do in your future. Instead, God is calling you to go deeper, further and faster towards all he has promised you. There is a beautiful verse in Hebrews 12 which encourages us to lay aside everything that may hinder us from running the race God has set before us. Verse 2 tells us to ‘fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith.’ The life of a believer is about getting rid of everything that hinders, and about fixing our eyes firmly on Christ as we run after Him.
This year, you might not see what is ahead of you, you may not even fully know what is available to you, but I want to encourage you to live a life knowing that God has got more for you than you have previously experienced. My friends, this is not all there is for you. Our God is the one who is able to do exceedingly and abundantly above all that we ask or think, the one who has prepared things that the heart of man could ever imagine. Like the Apostle Peter in Matthew 14, it’s time for us to get out of the boat and move toward Jesus in faith, saying, ‘God, if you are calling me then I’m coming.’ It’s time for us to sacrifice the comfort of the boat; to believe that looking at and pursuing Him is what will cause us to do great things.
This year you are not called to choose the sixpence. Go for the guinea. Go for the promises of God. Go for all that He has made available to you. I promise you, you won’t regret it! You may lose some things along the way, you may get splashed by some waves, but you’re going to be thrust into God’s great purposes for your life and for this earth, filled with His presence and anointed by Him. Go for the golden guinea!