Many people think that winning the lottery would be the greatest this that could happen to them, especially if it involved millions of dollars. I will disagree. In my opinion the greatest thing you can win is FAVOR.
What is favor? I went to the Dictionary and found a whole list of meanings. Let’s stick with #1. Friendly or kind regard; good will; approval; liking.
Then I went to the Thesaurus and found lists upon lists. Here I will also stick with #1. Prefer, like, approve, sanction, praise, honor, value, prize, esteem, think well of, etc.
The Bible tells us that as a child, Jesus grew in favor with God and men.
When the LORD decided to wipe out mankind from the earth because of their wickedness, he couldn’t do it, because “Noah found favor in the eyes of the LORD” (Gen 6:8). The big ark and the flood is history. Noah and his family were saved because they met with God’s approval.
“Moses sought the favor of the LORD his God” (Ex 32:11).
“Jehoahaz sought the LORD’s favor, and the LORD listened to him” (2 Kings 13:4). That’s something I would like to be said about my life, that I sought God’s favor, and that he listened to me.
Nehemiah prayed, “Remember me with favor, O my God” (13:31).
The most favored woman ever was Mary. What a privilege to carry the Son of God! When the angel visited to give her the news, this was his greeting, “Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God” (Luke 1:30).
Some other persons from the Bible that sought God’s favor or experienced it are Abel, Naphtali, Samuel, David, Manasseh, Hezekiah.
There are promises that we can have God’s favor.
“For surely, O LORD, you bless the righteous;
you surround them with your favor as with a shield” (Ps 5:12).
“For the LORD God is a sun and shield;
the LORD bestows favor and honor;
no good thing does he withhold
from those whose walk is blameless” (Ps 84:11).
“May the favor of the Lord our God rest upon us;
establish the work of our hands for us —
yes, establish the work of our hands” (Ps 90:17).
Here is the recipe (with the secret ingredient and all!) to win both God’s and man’s approval:
“Let love and faithfulness never leave you;
bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.
Then you will win favor and a good name
in the sight of God and man” (Prov 3:3-4).
Love covers it all! To love God and to love our neighbor are the two great commandments. If you follow them you can’t go wrong. You will have favor!
Jesus Christ came to
- preach good news to the poor
- bind up the brokenhearted
- proclaim freedom for the captives
- release from darkness for the prisoners
- proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor…
- comfort all who mourn
- provide for those who grieve in Zion, to bestow on them
a crown of beauty instead of ashes
the oil of gladness instead of mourning
a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair (Isa 61:1-3).
“Now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation” (2 Cor 6:2).
We can win greater things than the Lottery. Let’s seek to win favor with God and with people around us!