Many of God’s blessings come with conditions: ‘If you diligently obey the voice of the Lord… all these blessings shall come upon you.’ (Deuteronomy 28:1–2 NKJV) When you put God’s Word into action, you obtain His blessing.
Blind Bartimaeus was begging when Jesus passed by. So he cried out, ‘Lord, that I might receive my sight.’ (Mark 10:51 KJV) He knew God’s blessing wasn’t automatic, but it was within his reach.
In a Peanuts cartoon, Charlie Brown is practising archery. In addition to a bow and arrow, he carries a paintbrush and a bucket of paint. He shoots the arrow towards the target, and wherever it lands he paints a bull’s-eye around it. When Lucy asks Charlie about this, he says, ‘This way I always hit my target!’ Vikki Burke writes: ‘This is the way some Christians live… wherever the arrows of life happen to land, they claim was their destination all along. How badly do you want the blessing of God? How committed are you? The desires God placed in your spirit and the goals He set in His Word won’t be fulfilled automatically, but they’re attainable.’
She also says: First: you must build a strong foundation by becoming established in God’s Word. Second: expect to increase one step at a time. Paul says, ‘Walk in the steps of… faith.’ (Romans 4:12 NKJV) Results won’t appear overnight, but they will come and you’ll see the rewards of your diligence. Third: aim high, expect God’s best, and be willing to give Him your best. Peter says, ‘Giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue… knowledge… self-control… perseverance… godliness… brotherly kindness… and… love.’ (2 Peter 1:5–7 NKJV)