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Bible Study Notes 6/27/2023

Word Alive! © 2023 Spring/Summer Series Dare To Dream And Grow Your Faith! Concord Baptist Church of Boston in Milton Conley Hughes, Jr., Senior Pastor Tuesday, 27 June 2023 Lesson 2, Part 2


Rick Warren, Created To Dream, © 2023

Quiet Time: Rick Warren, “Dream,” pp. 19-37


Discovering Your Dream We’ve discussed in the previous lesson that God as Creator has always known what He intended to create, this sense of divine purpose is how God has set everything in its proper order in heaven and on earth. We all seek to know, what is God’s plan for us. Arriving at an understanding of what God’s plan is, will help us gain knowledge of what the focus of our dreams or desires should be. We must first be confident in the knowledge that God is in us, and will always work on our behalf. (Read, Philippians 2:13, NLT). When we align with God in prayer and obedience, we will develop a passion for those dreams which are in accord with God’s plan for us. God never gives us a passion or dream, without providing the resources necessary to accomplish its end. The early Christians were assured of Christ’s provisions and guidance, which were necessary for the fulfillment of their dreams. (Read, Hebrews 13:21, NLT). We also need to be assured that the Christ in us, will always be with us. In his helpful study book, author Rick Warren says:

God has a good, pleasing, and perfect will for your life. It’s not a one-size-fits-all plan. God’s dream for you is personal. It’s custom made for the way he shaped you.” Warren says further what shapes us are: spiritual gifts; heart; abilities; personality; and experience. These distinct aspects of who we are can best be remembered by the acrostic: SHAPE. Each of us has been uniquely shaped by God to accomplish His will. (Read, Psalm 139:1:13-14, NLT). To discover our dream, we must be intention in our time with the Lord. We should search deep within ourselves to find the passion, that aligns with God’s purpose; and, would please Him. The Holy Spirit will give us discernment, and lead us to understand whether our dreams are from self or from God. (Read, John 16:13, NLT). The Holy Spirit will also help us understand God’s will for our intermittent future.

Pastor Warren delineates three types of dreams, and how they can be understood:

  1. One category of human dreams occurs at night, which involves thoughts, events or images. These dreams can be good or frightening; but are the brain’s settling from its work.

  2. Another category of human dreams are personal ambitions or passions we’ve had when awake; and, they’re replayed at night.

  3. The third dream is our coming to terms with God’s plan for us; its fulfilment requires the testing of our faith, and God’s assurance of His will for us. (Read, Psalm 105:19-21a, NLT). It is in this latter sense, that God reveals to us His plan for our destiny!

Discovering Your Dream, Part 2 The dreams Joseph had, were a precursor or introduction to how God would use him to save His family from famine. By placing Joseph in Egypt, God was positioning him to build up the nation who would bear the new name of its patriarch, Israel. Jospeh’s dreams had a deeper meaning than the images he saw; although they were a good description of how Egypt would suffer the woes of a famine. Only Joseph’s strategic plan could prevent a complete collapse of the nation. (Read, Psalm 105:21b-23a, NLT). Being confident in God’s plan, reinforces our faith. The Scripture gives reference to Joseph’s faith, even when he was about to die. Realizing that the Israelites would eventually suffer hardship in Egypt, Joseph was confident they would return to their ancestral home in Canaan (Read, Hebrews 11:22, NLT). For God’s people, a dream is not a mere wish fulfillment; it is confidence in God’s plan, which He has destined for our lives. Our faith works in tandem with our spiritual desires, and the plan God has reserved for us. When we trust God, we will not always see things as clearly as we wish at a particular moment; but God will always reveal his purpose as we continue to put our trust in Him1. The Apostle Paul spoke of this dim moment along our journey, with the assurance that we will see things much clearer in the time ahead. (Read, I Corinthians 13: 12, NLT). Even with our best hopes, we can fail to see victory ahead, because of intermittent obstacles and seemingly defeats. The confidence God gives us is strengthened and enlightened when we’re able to see more precisely, how God is working on our behalf. In a moment of crisis, the prophet Elisha prayed that God would open the eyes (clearer vision) of his young assistant, so his faith could be renewed (Read, 2 Kings 6: 15-17, NLT).

What we believe and imagine is not dependent on chance or random selection. The dreams which were experienced and spoken of in the Scripture by God’s people, were an introduction to God’s work. The prophets warned people against being dependent on chance, or false visions, as interpreted by others. (Read, Isaiah 8:19-20, NIV) God reveals His plan for us. The Holy Spirit brings clarity in what God expects of us. Jesus assures us, “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on His own; He will speak only what He hears, and He will tell you what is yet to come.” (John 16:13, NLT). In his helpful book, Created To Dream, author and pastor, Rick Warren rightly says, we must all “slow down” enough to “listen” to God. We can’t have a dream or desire, unless we give God our full attention. Warren says: “If you want to hear God’s voice, then you have to silence the noise around you…The reason you may never hear God speak to you could be that you’re never quiet – there is always something going on. You have to reserve time alone with God…” May it be so!


KEY IDEA

What We Believe!

“Discovering your dream, requires spiritual discernment.”

  1. “The dreams in God’s will are assured; and our faith is tested!

KEY VERSES

Philippians 2:13, NLT

“For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases Him.”


Hebrews 13:21, NLT

“May He equip you with all you need for doing His will. May He produce in you, through the power of Jesus Christ, every good thing that is pleasing to Him. All glory to Him forever and ever! Amen.


Psalm 139:1;13-14, NLT

“O Lord you have examined my heart, and know everything about me…You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous – how well I know it.”


John 16:13, NLT

“When the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on His own but will tell you what He has heard. He will tell you about the future.”


Psalm 105:19-21a, NLT

“Until the time came to fulfill his dreams, the Lord tested Joseph’s character. Then Pharoh sent for him and set him free; the ruler of the nation opened his prison door. Joseph was put in charge of all the king’s household.”


Psalm 105:21b-23a, NLT

“He became ruler over the king’s possessions. He could instruct the king’s aides as he pleased and teach the king’s advisors. Then Israel arrived in Egypt.”


Hebrews 11:22, NLT

“It was by faith that Joseph when he was about to die, said confidently that the people of Israel would leave Egypt. He even commended them to take his bones with them when they left.”


I Corinthians 13:12, NLT

“Now we see things im- perfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.”


2 Kings 6:15-17, NLT

“When the servant of the man of God got up early the next morning and went outside, there were troops, horses, and chariots everywhere. “Oh, sir, what will we do now?” the young man cried to Elisha. “Don’t be afraid!” Elisha told him. “For there are more on our side than on theirs!” Then Elisha prayed, “Open his eyes and let him see!” The Lord opened the young man’s eyes, and when he looked up, he saw that the hillside around Elisha was filled with horses and chariots of fire.”


Isaiah 8:19-20, NIV

“When someone tells you to consult mediums and spiritists, who whisper and mutter, should not a people inquire of their God’s instruction and testimony of warning. If anyone does not speak according to this word, they have no light of dawn.”


Psalm 46:10, NLT

“Be still and know that I am God. I will be honored by every nation... in the world.”


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