“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.
All the commandments which I command you this day you shall be watchful to do, that you may live and multiply and go in and possess the land which the Lord swore to give to your fathers. 2 And you shall [earnestly] remember all the way which the Lord your God led you these forty years in the wilderness, to humble you and to prove you, to know what was in your [mind and] heart, whether you would keep His commandments or not. 3 And He humbled you and allowed you to hunger and fed you with manna, which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you recognize and personally know that man does not live by bread only, but man lives by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of the Lord. 4 Your clothing did not become old upon you nor did your feet swell these forty years. 5 Know also in your [minds and] hearts that, as a man disciplines and instructs his son, so the Lord your God disciplines and instructs you. Deuteronomy 8:1-5 AMP
You might think you know what’s in your own heart, but you do not really know until you are humbled by your circumstances – by life! When everything else is stripped away, what is left is the essence of YOU! The hardest things you go through will be the things that define who you are. How will you respond? Will you be bitter or will you be better? Will you allow God’s word to govern your life; your choices; your circumstances? The sword of the word of God is sharper than a two-edged sword and will cut down deep on the inside of you and reveal the thoughts, intents, and purposes of your heart (Hebrews 4:12).
You can only change the things you are aware of. The Lord will cause your own heart to be revealed to you – so you can change, so you can grow, so you can make the adjustments, so you can make corrections to your direction – so you can walk in liberty and in blessing.
Unless you have suffered hunger, and been fed with manna, you may not come to realize that man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God. If you do not remember that God is the One who took care of you when you could not take care of yourself, then when He blesses you and promotes you, you will think that your ability and talents brought the blessing. You will forget God; you will forget what He has done; you will forget that it is HE Who gives you the power to get wealth and the power to succeed. You will think that you did it yourself and forget that God is actually the One who has empowered you to walk in blessing and success as a fulfillment of a covenant promise He made with you. You owe Him your appreciation.
The ear that listens to the reproof [that leads to or gives] life will remain among the wise. 32 He who refuses and ignores instruction and correction despises himself, but he who heeds reproof gets understanding. 33 The reverent and worshipful fear of the Lord brings instruction in Wisdom, and humility comes before honor. Proverbs 15:31-33 AMP
The reward of humility and the reverent and worshipful fear of the Lord is riches and honor and life. Proverbs 22:4 AMP
When you are going through hard times, and you want to experience a victory, you will need to humble your heart before the Lord. The attitude adjustments you get when you humble yourself under the mighty hand of God during the hard times – if you remember the lessons learned – will carry you through the good times. You need to humble yourself even more when you are prospering and succeeding, so that you do not become arrogant and lose what you have – or worse – lose yourself, by moving away from and then rejecting the Lord.
I know how to be abased and live humbly in straitened circumstances, and I know also how to enjoy plenty and live in abundance. I have learned in any and all circumstances the secret of facing every situation, whether well-fed or going hungry, having a sufficiency and enough to spare or going without and being in want. 13 I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me [I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who infuses inner strength into me; I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency]. Philippians 4:12-13 AMP
Possessions, position and prestige are not the answer to all your problems. Some people are mad at God when they don’t have what they think they should have, as if it is His fault, but then they take the credit when they prosper and they forget all about God. These people are never truly happy or satisfied. Even when they have more than enough, they are not satisfied.
There are other people who rejoice, praise and thank God whether they have or not and God always seems to come through for them. These humble, thankful people do not think of themselves more highly than they ought. They know how to be abased and live humbly no matter what state they find themselves in, whether having more than enough or not quite enough, therefore they are always happy and joyful and they truly enjoy their lives and their relationship with the Lord.