Learning to Receive
by Wendy Backlund
In wrapping up Feasting on the Spirit last week, we wanted to continue the momentum by sharing a chapter from Wendy's book Living from the Unseen on learning to receive from God. We pray it deepens your ability to receive from our good Father and connect with Him in new, life-transforming ways.
“The people who know their God shall be strong,and carry out great exploits.”
– Daniel 11:32b
Our perception of God will limit our reception from Him. For many years, I only saw God as my Master; therefore, my reception from Him was limited to hearing Him tell me what to do or hearing rebukes for not doing something correctly. During that time, I lost not only the ability to dream, but I also lost any concept of my own identity. Even though I had been uniquely made with love, I thought God wanted me to symbolically disappear and become just an obedient slave. Slaves do not dream about the future because they are in bondage to someone else’s dream. I was thinking I was a slave to God instead of His friend. When we perceive God only as Master, it will prevent us from receiving all the love songs He sings over us (Zephaniah 3:17).
It will also prevent us from walking in His delegated authority to use the gifts of His Spirit. On the other hand, when we receive Him as our Father, a whole new world opens up for us.
As we begin to realize that the God of the universe is our Father, then we will be able to receive from Him, not just as a wealthy philanthropist, but as our loving, caring, giving, dad. A philanthropist gives an occasional handout, but a good dad gives constant nourishment to the body, soul, and spirit. He takes responsibility for every aspect of his children.
God is the perfect Father. He gives identity, love, and training so we may prosper in all things. I am enjoying my Christian life so much more ever since I enlarged my perception of who God is to me. Now, I am learning to laugh, dream, and receive blessings and encouragement from Him. I can relate to Him as a beloved daughter and am able to receive things from Him that I didn’t earn through performance but received through relationship.
Another perception that hindered my receiving was based on the religious belief that God holds back blessings of success, anointing, and finances until we have proven ourselves as faithful or worthy enough. Because of this belief, I was unable to stand in faith for anything that took me beyond my current experience in life. I lived from miracle to miracle rather than in the constant blessing of God. I unconsciously kept my success at my perceived level of worth or value. Since the view of my worth and value were distorted, I was never able to move on into the full destiny of my calling. When we seem to become stuck at a certain level of breakthrough, it usually is not because we are doing something wrong - it is often a belief issue.
For many years, I perceived God as the One who forgives but not as the One who empowers. I was constantly begging for forgiveness because I did not know He could empower me to change. If you are struggling with receiving the empowerment of His Spirit and think He is holding out on you for some reason, I suggest you read John 20:21-22, where
Jesus breathed on the disciples and said, ”As the Father sent me, I also send you. Receive the Holy Spirit.” This means that since the Father sent Jesus who was fully empowered with the resources of Heaven, so also Jesus sends us with the same empowerment. We must understand that He desires to empower His people.
We often make receiving more difficult than it should be. Matthew 10:8 says, “Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.” I have read that verse a thousand times, but it didn’t seem to be manifesting in my life. I found myself constantly begging for His anointing. One day, Jesus interrupted my prayer by telling me it wasn’t that hard to receive the anointing. This confused me until He added, “Even a handkerchief can do it!” He reminded me of Acts 19:11-12, when aprons and handkerchiefs soaked up Paul’s anointing to heal the sick and deliver people from evil spirits. If a handkerchief can perform Matthew 10:8, then surely we can!
Now when I am in His presence, I pretend to be a handkerchief and soak up His anointing. While soaking, I like to think about the effects of a person being out in the sun. We may not feel as if anything is happening, but within a few hours, the manifestation of a tan or sunburn will be evident. With this in mind, I remind myself that it is impossible to be in His presence and not be changed!
There are so many more aspects of God to receive than we are currently experiencing. What would the Body of Christ look like if we were to perceive Him correctly? First John 3:2 says, “When we see Him we will be like Him.” That process begins here on earth, not just in heaven. Every new revelation of Him transforms us and enables us to attempt exploits that go beyond our natural abilities and talents.
Let me provoke you with a question. Is God holding out on you or is your perception limiting your reception?
Spend some time waiting in God’s presence. Pretend to be a handkerchief and soak up His love and anointing. For more information on soaking, read this blog I wrote, or check out my soaking MP3 / CD called Encounter: An Activation of Your Spirit (more info on this is below).
I easily rest and receive in His presence.
Encounter: An Activation of Your Spirit
A 38-minute guided soaking encounter with Wendy Backlund
More Resources from Wendy
ABOUT WENDY BACKLUND
Wendy Backlund, along with her husband Steve, is from Bethel Church in Redding, CA. Wendy and Steve have a unique ministry that ignites hope, passion, joy, victorious mindsets and healthy relationships. They were senior leaders of renewal churches from 1991 to 2008 (Round Mountain, Nevada, and Weaverville, CA). The Backlunds travel regularly ministering to churches and leadership teams. Wendy has a passion for setting Christians free from their past and empowering them in their walk with Christ. She is a revelatory speaker, author, and teacher, enabling people to see life from a supernatural perspective.
Learn more about Wendy and her teaching at wendybacklund.com.