Getting Favor From God

I am sure you know what favor means but for the benefits of doubt, I will define favor using the Longman definition: Favor is to prefer someone or something to other things or people, especially when there are several to choose from.

Many of us often wonder why it looks like one person is favored than the other. For you to be favored you need to understand what it takes to get favor from God.

I have put together four major requirements to get favor from God.

1.Building a good relationship with God: (Genesis 39:1-23) "But the Lord was with Joseph and showed him mercy and gave him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison. And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph’s hand all the prisoners that were in the prison; and whatsoever they did there, he was the doer of it. The keeper of the prison looked not to anything that was under his hand; because the Lord was with him, and that which he did, the Lord made it prosper"

We all know the story of Joseph how he was sold into Egypt as a slave and he served in the house of Potiphar the captain of the guards of Pharaoh. You remember how Potiphar’s wife tried to seduce him and how he was later jailed by Potiphar. While in prison in Genesis 39: 21-23, the bible says that the keeper of the prison that is the chief warder put all the other prisoners in the hand of Joseph. Don’t forget that Joseph was also a prisoner, but he was appointed as a warder by the chief warder, isn't that awesome? That is favor.

Joseph received this favor because God was with him. Genesis 39:2 says “And the Lord was with Joseph and he was a prosperous man? This therefore implies that when God is with a man, the man receives favor from God. If for instance I am President Jonathan’s close friend or younger brother and the president comes to Lagos and while passing with his entourage sees me trekking from Isheri road sweating in the hot sun, do you think he will be happy? No. I am sure he will immediately order a brand new jeep for me. It’s the same with God, you can’t keep God in your heart and not obtain favor from him, remember he is the creator of all things including favor.

2.Humility and obedience: Esther received favor because she was humble and obedient. In Esther 2, after King Ahasuerus had passed a decree that banned Queen Vashti, he needed another woman to take up the position of the queen; the requirement was for the woman to be a virgin. Picture President Obama advertising on America Times the vacancy of the position of US First lady, can you imagine number of ladies that will apply for the position? But out of all those that will apply maybe 1000 or more, he needs just one of them as the queen; remember that all those that must apply must be virgins.

If you have the requirement of being a virgin, then you are invited to be in the palace for a period of one year where you will be trained after which you will appear before the king. Just like some organizations that after employing new staffs especially entry level, they put them in their training for a period of 3-6 months after which they will write exams of which they are expected to pass all courses with at least 60% score before they are taken as full staffs.

And so these virgins were in the palace for the period of time, then each is presented to the king, once the king disapproves of you that is the end of it, you can never see him again. These virgins were allowed to request for whatsoever they wanted before they go unto the king. While all others requested for material things, Esther sought advice from the king’s chamberlain Heggai, she didn’t feel like she was too beautiful to seek advice from ordinary chamberlain, like some of us would feel if we are in her position, the bible in Esther 2: 15 says, ?Now when the turn of Esther the daughter of Abihail the uncle of Mordecai, who had taken her for his daughter, was come to go in unto the king, she required nothing but what Heggai the king’s chamberlain, the keeper of the women, appointed. And Esther obtained favor in the sight of all them that looked upon her. Esther obeyed because she was humble and she received favor.

3.Fasting: In Esther 4, when Haman was promoted to the position the vice-president by King Ahaseurus, he became very proud and decided to wipe off the entire Jews in the kingdom. Hamman had written the decree it was just left for the king to put his seal on it and it will become a law to kill all the Jews. The information leaked out to Esther who was also a Jew.

Before you can approach the king even as a queen he must have first sent for you or you may stand the chance of being killed if the king was not in a right mood. Knowing this, Esther was between risking her life by going to meet the king to dishonor Hamman’s decree or allowing the decree to be passed and all Jews killed including herself.

Esther addressed the Jews in Esther 4:16 "Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shusahan, and fast ye for me, and neither eat nor drink three days, night or day. I also and my maidens will fast likewise; and so will I go unto the king, which is not according to the law: and if I perish, I perish"

Esther 5:1-2, "Now it came to pass on the third day of the fast that Esther put on her royal apparel, and stood in the inner court of the king’s house, over against the king’s house and the king sat upon his royal throne in the royal house, over against the gate of the house. And it was so, when the king saw Esther the queen standing in the court, that she obtained favor in his sight.

So when we fast for any particular reason, it maybe to get a thing from man, God gives us favor before that man and whatever we ask will be granted.

4.To obtain favor from God, you must believe that you are positioned for favor. I discovered that one of the things that affect people from achieving favor is the general mentality that maybe favor is not meant for them. For you to have favor you must believe that you are a candidate for favor.

In Genesis 12:2, God told Abraham, “And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great, and thou shalt be a blessing” That is favor!

Some of us think that this blessing is for Abraham and not for us. Hear what Galatians 3:26-29 says, "For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized unto Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond or free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. And if ye be Christ's then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.

Remember in Genesis 12:2, God told Abraham, I will make you great and Galatians 3:29 says, we are Abraham’s seed, that means if we are Abraham’s seed then we have the same inheritance that Isaac and Jacob had, so it means we have favor.

Favor is the opening of doors; it is the opening of human hearts in response to your asking. As a Christian, if you are born again then you can have favor for God of you believe that you will have it when you ask Him, because when you are Christ you have become part of the Abrahamaic lineage.

Favor is the cure for emptiness and I want to let you know that as you put all these points into practice from today that your days of emptiness are over. Even as a church, it’s God’s favor that brings about increase and growth.

In Acts of the Apostles while Paul was preaching, the bible says, God opened the heart of Lydia and she responded to him. I pray that as you take these steps from today opportunities will be opened to you in Jesus name. It will cause you to come to tears of joy; it will overwhelm you in Jesus name.

Remember to obtain favor from God:
1. God must be in your life, he must always be in your heart

2. Humility & obedience to God brings favor

3. Fasting

4. Believe that you are positioned for favor

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For wherever there is jealousy and selfish ambition there you will find disorder and evil of every kind. James 3:16