Strategy for greater Success.
One of the most incredible testimonies in the Scriptures is found in 2 Kings 4:1-7. Here, the prophet Elisha spoke to a woman who was on the verge of bankruptcy, burdened with mountains of debt, and facing the possibility of losing her children due to servitude.
And he said: “Go, borrow empty vessels from everywhere, from all your neighbors, empty vessels; do not gather just a few.” 2 Kings 4:1-7
What was he trying to convey here? Wasn’t another scripture warning us against borrowing? Well, it is certainly a kind of borrowing that gives us leverage. Borrowing to invest upward expands your playing field. Borrowing to invest upward changes the foundation of your operation. The reason many don’t succeed financially is that they swing on the pendulum, either on one side believing they shouldn’t borrow because the Scriptures say “Owe no one anything except to love,” or on the other side, borrowing even if it’s to increase their liabilities.
Increasing your liabilities actually means that instead of using your finances to invest, you are perpetually using money to create liabilities and buy things that do not appreciate in value. Financial leverage is about harnessing other people’s financial resources to accomplish extraordinary things. What I mean here, for example, is if you want to buy a house and you are a salaried employee, you probably will never be able to amass enough money to purchase it in one go.
If you live in a country where mortgages are available, the wisest thing to do is to take advantage of it. Use other people’s money to buy such property. If you want more details on this topic, get my book “The 10 Money Points.”
Look for opportunities to use other people’s money for investments. Use it to generate returns. You might be wondering if there is a scriptural justification for this. Indeed, one of the parables told by Jesus is the parable of the talents, in which we see a man giving three men the means to leverage their lives. To one, he gave five talents, to the second two talents, and to the third one talent.
A talent, in today’s currency, was worth more than half a million US dollars. In all the world’s economies, that’s still a significant amount of money. One of them multiplied the money he was given, so when he returned it to the master, it was with a profit – that’s leverage. The second did the same – that’s leverage. The third, however, buried the talent he was given. His life remained stagnant; one could even say that, even though he returned one talent, he didn’t really return the true value of what was given to him because, given inflation, the talent had lost its value.
If Jesus told this story, it actually means that God wants you to leverage for success. According to the instructions the Lord gave to the prophet Elisha, he told the woman to go and borrow. In this case, it helped her increase her worth, pay off her debt, and have enough to live on. Using other people’s money means learning to tap into God’s resources provided to others and leveraging them for use and return.
Remember that our teaching in this passage is about leverage. If you don’t believe that God can make you prosper, you will never receive anything from Him. But if you believe in God, that He is capable of making you prosper, He will certainly do it. Look at what God says about Himself in Haggai 2:8-9.
“The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine,” says the Lord of hosts. “The glory of this latter temple shall be greater than the former,” says the Lord of hosts. “And in this place I will give peace,” says the Lord of hosts. – Haggai 2:8-9
This was the word of the Lord to a nation struggling to complete the temple of God they were building. Leverage helps you fulfill God’s initial intent when He said to be fruitful, multiply, fill the earth, and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, and every living thing that moves on the earth. Genesis 1:28
The anointing or grace of others There are challenges and battles you may face for which you will need the help of a pastor, a prophet, or a teacher to overcome. You must recognize that it is possible to leverage your life by calling on the anointing of a prophet. This scripture helps us understand that when God brought Israel out of Egypt, it was because of His grace and anointing on a prophet.
By a prophet, the Lord brought Israel out of Egypt, and by a prophet Israel was preserved. Hosea 12:14
When nations confronted Jehoshaphat, and he didn’t know what to do, God sent a prophetic word, encouraging them to recognize His prophet and the gift of the prophets – they would succeed.
Listen, all you of Judah and you inhabitants of Jerusalem, and you, King Jehoshaphat! Thus says the Lord to you: ‘Do not be afraid nor dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours but God’s.’ 2 Chronicles 20:20
This actually means that what a prophet places in your life is important. His prayer matters, the grace he imparts to your life matters. You can tap into the anointing of a prophet by sowing a prophet’s offering. When Elijah was sent to a widow, he could have shown sympathy for the woman by sparing her last meal. However, God had previously commanded this woman to listen and obey everything the prophet would say to her.
Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and dwell there. See, I have commanded a widow there to provide for you. 1 Kings 17:9
Her obedient act enabled her to avoid debt and hunger, while others struggled during a famine. King Saul, before his anointing, was searching for his father’s donkeys and couldn’t find them. However, when he brought the gift God had placed in his hand to the prophet, looking for donkeys, he found his destiny and a throne. So there might be a prophet, a minister who has a word, an encouragement that will lift you from where you are to where you should be.
Sometimes, what you need isn’t physical prosperity; you probably already have that. However, there may be a challenge to overcome. In the Scriptures, there was an old woman who was financially blessed but physically barren, unable to have children, and yet, in her old age, she decided to acknowledge God’s gift in Elisha and provided him lodging. This act of recognizing the grace and anointing of the prophet prompted him to pray for her to have a child in her old age. To access your success, you may need to leverage the anointing of others.
The final success strategy we are examining concerns change. No word has such versatility as the word “change.” However, when it comes to applying it, it’s interesting to note that we resist change in all areas of our lives. What does the word “change” mean? For the sake of wordplay, let’s explore several meanings. It means to make something different, like changing the spelling of a word, giving a different shape or appearance, transforming – for example, turning a courtyard into a garden. Change can mean giving and receiving reciprocally – it’s exchange.
A change of place involves swapping or replacing with another usually of the same kind or category – in other words, when you change names. The term “change” can also mean putting aside, forsaking, or leaving for another, as in “switching,” meaning if you change methods or sides. Changing money from one denomination to another is currency. When you change a wet bedsheet or a baby, that’s currency. Change is becoming different or undergoing alteration.
For example, when transitioning from one level of maturity to another, that’s change; when undergoing transformation or transition, for instance, when music shifts from a majestic sound to a waltz. It can involve moving from one phase to another, like the changing of seasons. Change is a very powerful thing that we experience every day. It can mean making an exchange – that is, having a preference for something else, switching from one mode of transportation to another, for instance, when changing planes. Change can involve putting on a different garment.
Change is the act, process, or result of alteration or modification. For example, you can alter your facial expression. Change is the replacement of one thing with another, as in substitution. A change of ownership, a change of atmosphere, a substitution, and that’s change. When you have money in your pocket, people call it currency. The change given when a certain amount exceeds what is due is also currency.
Every day, we are involved in negotiations, maneuvers, and changes. Some of these changes are not pleasant, and we resist them. No one likes change, except babies in a wet diaper. We all resist it, even though we need it. We prefer what is regular and predictable, not changes that require a shift from one level to another, a transformation of our minds, lifestyles, and habits, even though it is not possible to become better without it…