by Kenneth Copeland
You have a divine destiny.
I know sometimes that's hard to believe when you're up to your eyeballs in the daily demands of living. When it's all you can do just to deal with the bills... and the kids...and the job, life can seem anything but divine. You can be tempted to wonder if you're destined to be or do anything truly great. You can be tempted to decide that even if you had such a destiny, you just don't have what it takes to fulfill it.
But it is absolutely vital that you resist those temptations.
Why? Because Almighty God needs you to fulfill your destiny—because there are people in this world who will never see Him or know Him unless they see Him and know Him through you.
"Oh, Brother Copeland, that's a little hard for me to believe," you might say. "Almighty God, the Creator of the universe, couldn't possibly need one little, flesh and blood person like me!"
He needed Jesus, didn't He? And when Jesus walked the earth He was just one flesh and blood person.
"Certainly! But Jesus was the Son of God. He came to reveal the power and the nature of the Father. He came to do the works of God."
Yes that's true. And according to the Bible, if you're a born-again child of God, you're here to do the same thing. Jesus Himself said, "He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father" (John 14:12).
God Knew You When...
You are divinely destined to be like Jesus and do the same—and even greater—works than He did.
Most believers stagger at that thought. They know their own natural failures and shortcomings. They feel totally unequipped to reveal to others the Person and Power of the Lord Jesus. Remember: He did not say we would be greater—He said the works would be greater.
The fact is, we are equipped. Ephesians 1 says so. It tells that the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ has already...
blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: according as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, to the praise of the glory of his grace (verses 3-6).
Think of it! God didn't wait until you were born to figure out a destiny for you. Before the earth was ever created, He predestined you to be like Jesus and provided everything you'd ever need to fulfill that destiny. He gave you everything necessary to be holy and blameless before Him. He set aside for you all the blessings and divine power it would take for you to represent Him on the earth and bring praise and glory to God.
You might look at yourself and wonder why God would ever choose someone like you to reveal His greatness. In light of all the mistakes you may have made and all the weaknesses you see in yourself, why would God ever think you could be like Him?
I'll tell you why. God knew you before you ever sinned. He knew you when you were wonderful. He knew you before your life got messed up. He knew you before the devil ever got his hands on you.
God knew you when you were just an image on the inside of Him—and that image was a picture of Himself.
God Never Changed His Plan
If you doubt it, just read the book of Genesis. It tells us that in the beginning Adam and Eve were made in the very image of God (Genesis 1:26). To look at them was to see a flesh and blood representation of God Himself. That's what God intended for all His children to be.
Then the devil got in there and messed things up. They pretty well stayed messed up for 4,000 years. But the whole time, God was working out His plan.
His plan to have sons and daughters on the earth again. Sons and daughters born in His image. Sons and daughters who were flesh and blood manifestations of Himself.
That was God's original intention and He never changed it.
When Jesus came to the earth, He picked up where the first Adam left off and lived out His life as a perfect reflection of His Father. He said what He heard the Father say. He did what He saw the Father do. And He did it so completely that at the end of His earthly ministry He could say, ".he that hath seen me hath seen the Father" (John 14:9).
Then, after purchasing our redemption and deliverance from sin with His own blood, He sent the Holy Spirit to empower us with His own life and He said, "As my Father hath sent me, even so send I you" (John 20:21).
Do you realize what that means? It means we have been divinely equipped with the power to reveal Jesus in our lives. Just as He was able to say, "If you have seen me, you have seen the Father," we should be able to say, "If you've seen me, you've seen Jesus."
Get Connected to the Power
Is such a thing really possible? Yes, because through the new birth, we've been given the very nature and character of God (II Peter 1:4). Our spirits have been re-created in His image and all the spiritual forces found in Him have been imparted to us. We have His love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and temperance (Galatians 5:22-23). We have His wisdom. We have the same anointing available for our minds that He had when He was here on the earth (I Corinthians 2:16).
We don't have to ask God for those things—they're already in us. We just have to cultivate and develop them. As we do, we'll manifest the character and power of Jesus in our own personal lives.
If all we had was the life of Jesus working in us on our own behalf, that alone would be enough to make us forever grateful. But amazingly enough, that's not all we've been given. God has also equipped us with another mighty element. He's given us the power to meet the needs of other people like Jesus did. That's the power we receive when we're baptized in the Holy Spirit.
This mighty, supernatural power enables us to operate on a higher level than we can in our own, personal lives. When we need to minister to someone and we've extended our faith and our wisdom as far as it will go, this divine equipping will take over and finish the job. It connects us not only with God's divine life and nature but with the very ministry of Jesus. As a result, we can do for others just what Jesus would do.
"Well, Brother Copeland," you might say, "I'm not a full-time minister. I'm just a simple believer. I don't have that kind of power available to me."
I Corinthians 12 says you do.
The manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; to another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; to another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will (verses 7-11).
You—yes, you—are divinely designed to operate in the gifts of the Spirit! They're a part of the ministry of Jesus that, as His disciple, you are destined to carry on. These manifestations of the Holy Spirit are real. They are practical. And they are desperately needed in the earth today.
A Catastrophe Averted
Believe me, I know just how vital these gifts of the Spirit can be. I've been on the receiving end and I can tell you from experience they can save your life and the lives of others!
Early in my ministry, I went to preach in Shawnee, OK., at a church pastored by a wonderful couple named Roy and Opal Sprague. They had been involved in the Camp Meeting years ago in Hot Springs, AR, from which the Assembly of God church was born and they really knew about spiritual gifts.
While I was there, Pastor Roy prayed for me and my family every day. He said, "Brother Kenneth, I'd like for you to be free to keep your mind on preaching while you're here. So I'm going to pray over your personal and ministry affairs for you."
One morning while I was getting dressed for one of the services he called me. "Did you buy an air compressor and spray-paint rig right before you left home?" he asked.
"Why yes, Roy," I answered. "Why do you ask?"
"Your gas hot water heater is out in the garage," he said, "and when I was praying this morning I saw Gloria hook up that spray rig and start spraying in there. Then I saw an explosion in the garage."
I immediately called Gloria to tell her what Pastor Sprague had said. Sure enough, she'd been planning to spray paint out in the garage. The Holy Spirit had spoken to her and told her not to do it—and the word of knowledge that Roy Sprague received was confirmation for her.
Praise God. That was a manifestation of the ministry of Jesus! It was the Holy Spirit working through a believer for the good of the Body of Christ. Because Roy Sprague and Gloria Copeland both dared to believe for and operate in the gifts of the Spirit, a catastrophe was averted!
Learning English God's Way
Frankly, I'm convinced we've barely scratched the surface of the powerful things God desires to do through these wonderful, supernatural gifts. He longs to do things like He did for a man I heard about back in the late 1970s. I never met the man myself but I talked to several ministers I respect who visited with him personally at a Full Gospel Businessmen's Convention.
They told me he had been a part of a community of people in Europe who had been operating in the manifestations of the Holy Spirit for several hundred years. Their faith was highly developed in that area. When they heard about the word of faith movement that was taking place in the United States, they desired to know more about it. So they got together and began to pray.
When they did, the Lord spoke to them and told them to go to America and learn about this move of God. There was only one problem. None of them spoke English. So they laid their hands on their apostle and simply believed he received the ability to communicate in the English language.
Sure enough, he came over here and preached, wrote and conversed in English. Nobody taught him to do it. It was a miracle of God! I talked to one well-known minister who heard him preach. "How did he do?" I asked.
"He did very, very well!" he answered. "Sometimes he'd have to stop and pray a little while in tongues, but then he'd get straightened out and keep right on preaching."
Don't Argue, Just Obey!
Another man of God who had developed his faith to operate boldly in the gifts of the Holy Spirit was John G. Lake. One time he was traveling across Europe by train and he stopped at a station in Italy. As he was sitting there looking out the window, he saw some men standing on the platform talking.
The Spirit of God spoke to him and said, "Go witness to those men. I want to save them." Now Brother Lake wasn't the kind of man who would argue with the Lord. He wasn't one who would say, "Oh, Lord, don't You have someone else You could send besides scraggly, little, old me?"
No. He just picked up his Bible, walked out of that train car, stepped up to those men and began speaking to them in tongues. They understood every word he said and all three of them were born again and baptized in the Holy Spirit right there.
"My goodness, I just don't know how he did that!" somebody might say.
I'll tell you how he did it. He did it by releasing the three spiritual forces the Bible tells us are absolutely vital for those who desire to operate in the gifts of the Spirit—faith, hope and love (I Corinthians 13:13).
John G. Lake loved the Lord and loved those men enough to step out by faith and obey the command of God. He dared to operate in Bible-hope which is earnest expectation that God would do through him exactly what Jesus said He would do. He had a divine image inside him, an image of himself doing the works that Jesus did and even greater works. And he moved boldly expecting that image to become reality.
What's more, he refused to let fear stop him.
Fear will mess up the things of God. Fear will keep us from moving in the gifts of the Spirit if we let it. That's why any time fear shows its ugly head, you must stop right there and deal with it. You can't afford to accept it and say, "Well, that's just the way I am."
Why? Because your divine destiny is waiting! The Lord Jesus is waiting! The world is waiting for His ministry to be manifest through you!
So don't let anything stop you. Right in the midst of all the daily demands of life, rise up in faith, hope and love and begin to do what God divinely designed you to do.
Get out your Bible and develop that divine image inside you. See yourself ministering in the power of the Holy Spirit. See yourself doing the very works of Jesus—the works He said you were destined to do. Then let the very love of God move you to step out in faith and do what the Spirit leads you to do. Do it in love. Do it by faith. And do it with hope, confidently expecting God to keep His Word.
Dare to fulfill your destiny and the world will see Jesus through you.