Turning Point, by Pastor (Mrs) Ekundayo Aruwajoye
Bible Text: 2 Kings 4:1-7
Turning point is a time when a drastic change occurs or takes place in the life of a man / woman. For example, you may be walking through a path, then you turn and something suddenly happens. Also, it could be that you have been going through some difficult times and then suddenly what was impossible became possible to you.
An example in the Bible can be found in 1 Chronicles 13:7-14, the story of Obed-Edom. He was a nobody until the day came when God visited him and there was a turning point in his life. King David was afraid of the Ark and what it might do to him. It was decided that the Ark be taken to Obed-Edom house, with the notion that whatever might want to happen should happen at Obed-Edom house, since he was a nobody. But God changed Obed-Edom’s story, Obed-Edom himself would have been afraid, since the Ark just resulted in the death of Uzzah but because he could not protest the Kings order, he got his turning point. Maybe there is someone reading this, you are in a situation , you feel trapped and lost ; I pray for you that the situation you are in will be used as an instrument for your turning point in Jesus name.
So, how do we experience turning point, what are the turning points in the life of a Christian?
When Sorrow turns into Joy: The life of Jabez is a typical example of a turning point where sorrow was turned into joy, When Jabez was born, his mother named him Jabez which means “sorrowful”. Imagine; whenever this man was called – somebody was actually calling sorrow. So whatever he laid his hands on became a reflection of his name. But Jabez needed a turning point and prayed.
1 Chronicles 4: 9-10- “Jabez was more honourable than his brothers, and his mother named him Jabez saying, “Because I bore him with pain.” 10Now Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, “Oh that You would bless me indeed and enlarge my border, and that your hand might be with me, and that You would keep me from harm that it may not pain me!” And God granted him what he requested”. Five prayers Jabez made:
God bless me
Bless me indeed
God let your mighty hand be upon me
Enlarge my coast
Keep me away from evil
God answered Jabez prayers; He laid His mighty hands upon Jabez and received a turning point. If anyone needs a turning point, open your mouth and pray the prayer of Jabez, may be people call you names and point fingers at you, God can change your story.
Another turning point we ought to experience as children of God is that penury will become plenty. 1Kings 4:1 tells the story of widow whose husband feared the Lord and still died of penury. He owed so much that his sons were to be taken as slaves if she was unable to pay the creditors. She ran to Elisha (the prophet) and cried unto him. Elisha spoke on the authority of the word and there was a turning point. She became a renowned oil seller, thus her turning point.
As a Christian, failure also becomes success. A better example is one of the disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ; Peter. Peter was a fisherman and had toiled all night but caught nothing. He was dejected and packing to go home at the dawn of the day. Then Jesus came along and the story changed. Luke 5: 4-6. Peter had a turning point. The fishes that had been hiding from him, suddenly appeared. May be you are in this situation where you have submitted applications , you have toiled , you have good grades, you are intelligent but nothing seem to be working for you at moment , I pray that the doors shut against you will be open . The riches hiding from you will be given to you on a platter of gold because the word of God has come to you today.
Another example is in 1Kings 17: 7-16, about the woman of Zarephath. A widow and her son, who was ready and willing to die after they eat their last meal. But the Lord sent Elijah and she received her turning point. Lack was changed to surplus. Any one that got a turning point sings the song of victory.
Barrenness changed to Fruitfulness: Hannah, Hannah was a woman who had been without child for a long time. She was always been tormented by Peninah (second wife). On this day, Hannah had enough and when they got to Shiloh she cried unto the Lord. That was not their first time of going to Shiloh but that year was different for Hannah , she had divine push from Peninah which made her cry like she had never done before, it made her thirst for the will of God to be done and accomplished in her life. As Christians we sometimes forget we need to pray until there is fire on the mountain. It’s high time we begin to cry unto God and He will answer.
The Shunammite woman (2Kings 4:8-37) is another example. She did not have a competitor but was a compassionate woman who was led to provide shelter and make the Elijah comfortable, thus she was made full and received a turning point.
John 16: 24 – “Until now you have not asked [the Father] for anything in My name; but now ask and keep on asking and you will receive, so that your joy may be full and complete”. No matter where we are in life, there is always the need for a turning point. God is willing and able to do until we stop asking.
Another reason for a turning point in the life of a Christian is sickness. This is something that the world faces as well but what differentiates Christians from the world is where we receive help and how we react to challenges as they come. John 5:5-8 identifies the life of a man who had been sick for 38 years and had no one. Everyone had rejected because he was of no use to them but Jesus came to his rescue and turned his life around.
The woman with issue of blood is another great example of a person that received a turning point. She had been afflicted for 12years. Her life was draining day by day; blood is life. She had no husband and every one had left her. She heard about the power of Jesus and with great faith thought if only I could touch the hem of His garment. She did and received her turning point (Mark 5: 25-28). I pray for you in the name of Jesus, whatever may be representing the issue of blood in your life would dry up in Jesus name.
Also, when you receive a turning point, you are set free from every form of bondage. Joseph was a man in bondage, he was in prison for a sin he did not commit. He sought for help from men but was forgotten until the appointed time. God did remember him and changed Joseph story around. He was made a Prime Minster and his brothers who sold him off bowed to him, his dreams became a reality.
Wherever you are, God has not forgotten you. He has already set you free and He will lift you up and at the appointed time your dreams will be reality but like Joseph stay connected to the source, be patient, do not be weary of good deeds.
Jacob also experienced a turning point in his life when he wrestled with the Angel and asked for Gods’ blessing. Jacobs’ prayer was answered and God changed his name to Israel which till today we relate with as the chosen one of God.
With an insight into the wonders and great benefits of a turning point, what do Christians need to do to receive a turning point?
Prayer: It is an important element common to all the people that have received a turning point. Hannah prayed, Jabez prayed, the widow of Zarephath cried unto God, the sick man cried unto Jesus for help. These people had a desperate need , they were thirsty for healing , there was a longing which made them cry from the depth of their heart. Until we reach that point, when we focus on God alone and surrender all to the lord God Almighty, the author and finisher of our faith, then we get the turning point.
Be a Worshipper: This implies having faith against all odds like father Abraham. In any situation you may find yourself, be a worshipper, be thankful and rejoice. Have faith that He is able to do, for only that rugged faith can make you seek the help that you deserve like the woman with the issue of blood.
Be a sacrificial giver: The widow of Zarepheth with her son, gave to Elijah sacrificially and received in abundance. Abraham was a giver, that he entertained Angels without even knowing which hastened his blessings of as Son. Solomon also gave to God what no man had given and he received the kind of wisdom what no man has ever received.
Lastly obedience: Obedience is better than sacrifice. 1 Samuel 15:22- “Samuel said, “Has the LORD as much delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed than the fat of rams. 23″For rebellion is as the sin of divination, And insubordination is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the LORD, He has also rejected you from being king…”. No one should be rejected by God and no one wants to be rejected by God but Saul disobeyed God and received a negative turning point that changed his life forever. The kingdom was taken away from not just him but also from his generation and give to the house of David.
Also, so many people have remained stagnant as a result of not obeying the word of God. Note that from the reference Luke 5: 4-6, when Peter had toiled all night and was told to cast back his net, he grumbled at first but said “at thy word I will….” Which he did and got his turning point , if he hadn’t he would have gone home languishing in poverty , frustrated and hungry and his obedience makes it even easier for him to take the next step of faith in doing greater things.
Also the woman of Zarephath obeyed the voice of God and fed Elijah not even knowing if she was going to receive help or not but she took that step of faith and obeyed. Abraham also , obeyed God when he was told to sacrifice his son and God was amazed at how much Abraham been a man was willing to give up for him and he blessed him greatly , swearing by Himself.
You are reading this today and you need a turning point. The first turning point is to confess the God Almighty as your Lord and be called his own, that you may hear Him clearly and heed His voice. Thus you will be able to enjoy all the wonderful gifts that have been discussed absolutely. Probably you are here but you have gone back to the world for one reason on the other, God wants you back. He loves you still (Romans 5:8).
I pray that as you dedicate and rededicate your life to Jesus Christ, you experience a turning point in Jesus name, Amen.
The sermon, Turning Point, by Pastor (Mrs) Ekundayo Aruwajoye, Zonal Pastor, RCCG Owo, Nigeria was delivered on December 18th 2016.