Anointing is similar to your gifting or talent, but the two are not exactly the same. You may be gifted or talented, but if you have no desire of deploying your endowment in the service of the one who gave them to you, you will certainly not have his seal of approval. The anointing is God’s seal of approval on your life for the execution of his assignment. As a man or woman on God’s assignment, it is very helpful for you to be able to discern the anointing of God on your life. The anointing gives you a clue about your assignment. It is the surest indicator that the Lord is with you because he never calls a person without equipping them with the requisite supernatural gift. This is explicitly affirmed by Paul in Romans 8:28-30:
“All things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.”
If you are called according to God’s purpose, he will justify you with his seal of approval, and then he will glorify you. How can you be a carrier of God’s special endowment and not know it? Some people believe that the anointing only comes after you begin the assignment. That is not exactly true. The truth is that the anointing might increase from one level of glory to another in the course of your assignment, but you are first equipped with the anointing before you begin your assignment. Jesus was anointed before he embarked on his mission. It was never the other way around. David was anointed by Samuel long before he became king of Israel. Moses received the anointing before he set out in boldness to deliver the Israelites from the hands of Pharaoh. Elisha received a double portion of Elijah’s anointing before he began his ministry. The disciples of Jesus first had to wait for the anointing of the Holy Ghost before they launched out with the message of the gospel. The list is inexhaustible.
Paul knew precisely what he was carrying when he said to the Corinthians: “And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in the demonstration of the Spirit and of power” (1 Corinthians 2:4). Knowing the degree of your supernatural endowment automatically guarantees a certain level of boldness and confidence required for your divine assignment. David once said, “The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want” (Psalm 23:1). What a bold declaration. How many people can declare this declaration in all boldness even in the face of obstacles? David knew that the Lord was his shepherd and he would provide for him. What David said is the greatest result that a shepherd would want to see in the life of his sheep. This shepherd has greatly impacted the life of his sheep, and it is obvious that this particular sheep is well fed and very satisfied and has a lot of trust and confidence in his shepherd. This sheep is very bold to declare that he shall lack nothing because the Lord was his shepherd. This is what the anointing does. The anointing makes you repose in God. It is like a backup generator. You know that the supernatural will take over when the natural fails. The supernatural is capable of breaking every inhibition in a person’s life, propelling that person through spiritual, physical, emotional, material, and psychological barriers. What if David did not know that the Lord was his shepherd? How limited his life would have been! What do you know about your own life? Have you been oozing with tremendous power all this time and never knowing?
Whenever you stand to function in your area of calling, there must be results to show. God’s supernatural endowment on your life is not to prop up your own personal ego. On the contrary, it is to cause things to happen beyond your human capability, and it is targeted to benefit a wider cause and purpose other than your own interests. Just a little spark of the Holy Spirit will cause the seemingly insurmountable problems to roll away. For this cause, it is vital to stay connected to the flow of anointing on a daily basis. The anointing must always be refreshed by constantly praying and tapping into the presence of God. It is like a live cable that is charged with electric current only when it remains connected to its source of power. You break the flow of power when you plug out from the socket which is linked to the source of power. Lack of prayer, lack of praise and worship, lack of studying and meditating on the word of God, and sin are some of the things that can cause a drying up of your anointing. Samson is a good example of a man on assignment whose anointing dried up as a result of disobedience. But true repentance can bring you back on course again.
The anointing is visible, tangible, and discernible, but unfortunately, many people on assignment do not know what they carry. The question then is: How can we discern the supernatural endowment of God on our lives? It is vital because it is an indication of which direction you should be towing. We discern the anointing simply by observing the results we produce, and those things that we do so well without much effort on our part. Your natural talents hold a major clue to your special supernatural gifting. If you are called of God for his assignment, it must ultimately show by way of the impact, the effectiveness and results you are having. You can measure the level of anointing you have drawn from the heavenly reservoir by quantifying and evaluating the results you are producing. Are you preaching healing and deliverance without the people getting healed and delivered? Are you preaching prosperity and still preside over a broke congregation? Note that in the kingdom of God, the lack of results has never been the norm. It is only an exception. If you are truly called for a particular assignment, the results will attest for themselves.
Walking in the Supernatural is Important
Walking in the supernatural is important because it brings help in very difficult situations. God will normally not do for you what you can do yourself. But when the going gets tough, and you find yourself under very trying conditions, his supernatural provision takes over. The supernatural is vital because it helps to reassure you of God’s tangible presence. When you walk in the supernatural, you are then better placed to relate with him on an earthly plane. A life devoid of the supernatural is dry, unexciting, and without adventure. In the kingdom, the supernatural attracts attention. It acts like a magnet and a light that draws attention to the kingdom. It draws the perishing closer to God, and it lifts up the name of the Lord.
When we talk of the supernatural, what readily come to mind are miracles. Miracles bring relief, healing, deliverance, and solution to the lives of people. But most important of all, miracles attract. They perform the very function as bait would to the fisherman. They help draw souls into the kingdom of God. Miracles are very vital because they act like icebreakers in very difficult fields of assignment. Could you imagine a Jesus without miracles? Impossible! Jesus worked very notable miracles when he walked the face of the earth. The miracles alone speak volumes about him. Man is not only flesh, but he is also spirit. We have had too much to show in the flesh as people on God’s assignment. But it is high time we also started living and flowing in the supernatural. There is a place for the supernatural in this earthly life that nothing else can usurp or even attempt to replicate. To walk less in the supernatural is to start taking a walk away from the kingdom of God.
Traditions cannot and must not replace the supernatural. Can you envisage life on earth with only the traditions of men and without the supernatural? Imagine a kingdom where no one gets healed, delivered, liberated, nourished, encouraged, challenged, or blessed? The truth is that you will only begin living life to the fullest after you have struck the point of equilibrium between the natural and the supernatural and continue doing those things that help maintain this harmony. Indeed a false balance is abomination to God. A life overly tipped to the physical is unfruitful in many things. Likewise is a life that is unable to relate to this earthly plane. The spirit, soul, and body of man are not the same. They are diverse, but deliberately and intricately put together by God to create one harmonious entity called man. Take away the spirit and life ceases to be. The things of the spirit are therefore more crucial than any other consideration. We cannot afford to water down the things that are supernatural. God is about to invade the planet earth with an outpouring of his power as he has never done before. He is in the process of pouring out his spirit upon all flesh. We need to position ourselves and prepare to flow with this move.
You Must Be in Tune with Your Source
To live a life of the supernatural and maintain the flow demands that you always stay tuned to the voice of God. The voice of God is the will of God for your life. God could be telling you one thing and you would be doing another just because you are not always tuned into his frequency. If you are alert only to what God told you yesterday, you can miss what he is telling you today. You can easily fail to notice the ultimate will of God for your life by neglecting to constantly sustain and enrich your communication with him. Abraham’s case is a classic example. He was perfectly in tune with what God told him “yesterday” and what God was telling him “today.” He first heard the voice of God to sacrifice his son Isaac. While he was about to carry out this instruction, he heard God again, but this time it was an order for him not to sacrifice Isaac. What if he was out of tune with God like most of us are? He would have carried out the first instruction and miss out on God and his own destiny. The will of God for your life is not just one word from God that was spoken yesterday. He is always at work in you to bring you to the expected end, and he is always speaking to you. He is not a God of “all at once,” but he is a God of “process” and of “one step at a time.” He is always speaking to us. Without God speaking to us continuously, there will be no true relationship, and that will be a sure sign that his anointing has departed from you. Check the life of Saul. The day God ceased speaking to him; he was on his way out:
“And when Saul saw the host of the Philistines, he was afraid, and his heart greatly trembled. And when Saul enquired of the Lord, the Lord answered him not, neither by dreams, nor by Urim, nor by the prophets” (1 Samuel 28:5-6).
“Then said Samuel, wherefore then dost thou ask me, seeing the Lord is departed from thee, and is become thine enemy? And the Lord hath done to him, as he spake by me: for the Lord hath rent the kingdom out of thine hand, and given it to thy neighbour, even to David” (1 Samuel 28:16-17).
We all know what ensued later.
The Anointing and Intimacy with God
To be in tune with God, you must be intimate with him. Intimacy with God and the supernatural are bedfellows. If you desire more than a one-off experience of the supernatural, then you must choose to be intimate with God. Living the supernatural is for people who are intimately in tune with God. It is only then the supernatural becomes a normal part of life for you. Intimacy with God is not just an early morning or late evening thing. It is a twenty-four hour lifestyle, every single day of your life. It is a God-consciousness that becomes part and parcel of your personality. Intimacy with God is like your very breath. Everywhere you are and whatever you do, you carry this lifestyle with you, fully aware and conscious of his very presence all day long. You cannot afford to switch him off, and you cannot evade his watchful eyes and caring love because he is always there in the person of the Holy Spirit. There is nothing like taking a break or a holiday away from him. He loves to be engaged always, and he never grows weary of your interaction. He is the only one that loves you unconditionally, even in spite of your mistakes and shortcomings. Such intimacy with him is a clear indication of your maturing love. This is a product of spiritual growth and discipline. It takes a lot of investment of time, prayer, and acquisition of knowledge; it takes a strong desire to know him. It is a lifestyle decision.
It Starts with a Personal Burden
Intimacy with God is not a wholesale thing. It is not a congregation thing because the congregation is made up of different sorts of people with different agendas and desires. Intimacy with God is an individual affair; it is a closet thing. It is comparable to a couple in true love. It is a lovers’ thing. If you cannot love, you cannot be intimate with God. It is an emersion into the river of love. You are constantly soaked wet, not wishing for a moment to stay dry. You drink from this river and swim in it without ever wanting the feeling to stop. This emersion takes place when you are totally yielded to your lover, nothing to hide, nothing to hold back. It is as though without your lover, your life is incomplete. It is a relationship of rest, in which you never feel any anxiety, fear, or restlessness. You know your lover is there for you, and you are there for your lover. Your life is dry and incomplete without this total communion and commitment.
Trust Comes with Intimacy
At this level of relationship there is nothing your lover will hide from you. You are totally transparent to each other. God will always bare his deepest thoughts to you if you are able to draw so close to him like this. You will no longer be taken by surprise by any event because he will confide in you. You will be abreast of God’s calendar of events. Paul puts it this way: “But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God” (1 Corinthians 2:9-10). Where there is intimacy, there abounds revelation, discernment, and direction. You will not lack vision and wisdom because you have now become a true extension of his eyes, his ears, his hands, his feet, his tongue, and his heart. Where he leads you is where you go. You no longer do things because they feel good or look good to do. You now do things because you know it is his will for you to do them and also the right time for you to do them.
Fulfillment Comes with Intimacy
A person who is intimate with God is a person that fulfills purpose and assignment. For, how can you be detached and alienated from your Creator and somehow expect to successfully carry out his will for your life? Aloofness, independence, divorce, and detachment will create a veritable gulf between you and your predestination or destiny. That is why God goes knocking at the door of everyone’s heart asking and seeking to be let in for an eternal relationship. Note that it is not just an eternal relationship he is seeking for; he desires an intimate eternal relationship and not a platonic one. What is the point of him denying himself of his heavenly glory and coming to lay down his life for you if it is just for a platonic relationship? It wouldn’t have been worth all his effort. If he was prepared to sacrifice his life for you and actually did that, then you too must be prepared to give him your whole heart. Then, and only then, will you be able to know his voice and hear him whenever he speaks to you. Only then will you be rightly guided and directed. You will now be able to minimize or completely avoid the errors and mistakes of life. You will flourish like a tree that lacks nothing. As a people on God’s assignment, we must strive to attain this level of intimacy in order to not miss out on our calling in life.
Practical Steps to Becoming Intimate with God
1. Deal with your ego
Know that in your present state, you are mortal like every human being. In spite of your acquired status in society, you are not above any human being, neither are you more important. We are all fellows who have all fallen and who are in need of grace and mercy. Before God and man, you must always don your cloak of humility, as it is said in the book of James: “Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up” (James 4:10). God abhors the proud, and he will resist you when you are proud. If you have an ego problem, you are likely to be self-righteous, arrogant, pompous, conceited, bigheaded, and overconfident. With this attitude, you will always be far from God. You will have to take off the garment of pride and don the cloak of humility. Strip yourself of all your reputation, and come to him with the attitude of a child. Then you will make progress.
2. Know that you can hide nothing from God.
Always approach him with an honest, sincere, and open heart. He knows you more than you think you know yourself. Your entire life is like a mirror or a crystal-clear glass before him. He has been around before time begun. He framed and created everything. He knows the product better than the product knows itself. Be open before him and always learn to pour out your heart to him.
3. Understand who he is.
Know that God can thrive and does thrive without you. Your presence in heaven or your preference for hell will not in any way take a thing away from him. But he wants to help you, and he is interested in your welfare because it is his nature to love. He does not force anyone to heaven or hell. The people themselves make that choice. His only interest is to help you. Your eternal wellbeing is his desire. You can never give him anything that you have not already received from him. You cannot be smarter than God because he is the beginning and the ending. He weighs the earth in the palm of his hand, and with him shall nothing be impossible.
4. Learn to acknowledge God first.
Place him first above anything or anyone. He is your very breath. He must be more important to you than anything else. He is the reason why you live. You must give him the first place in your life. His opinion and views are more important than the opinion of men. Each day of your life, you must desire to talk to him first. You must make him the first point of call when you experience turbulence in life. You must seek his interest first in anything you do in life. Always ask yourself the question: “Will God be pleased with this?” Or better still: “How would God feel?”
5. God always requires your free will to be at work.
He does not force you to do anything for him. He wants people to freely choose to come to him. A true lover does not force their partner to love them. A true lover receives love freely without coercion. That is God for you. If only you are willing, you can go very far in life with God.
6. God always responds to desire.
If you desire him, if you want him so badly, if you will always call on him, if you are a persistent seeker of him, if you earnestly desire to hear his voice, if you are thirsty and hungry for him, he will surely respond to you. He says in his word: “And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart” (Jeremiah 29:13). You cannot amount to much if you seek him half-heartedly. It is either you taste deep or you taste not. You cannot mix God with the pleasures of this world. It is either you are fully committed to him or you are not.
7. God makes room for your mistakes.
He knows that you are not perfect. He created a perfect man from the beginning, but man chose to flirt with the enemy, thereby corrupting his very pure nature in the process. He knows how frail and weak you are because of the fall of Adam, and he has a lot of room for your mistakes. All he wants from you is honesty. He wants you to approach him with an honest and penitent heart, and he will always have room for you. If you are able to picture the prodigal son, who made an honest assessment of his life and returned to his father, who was overjoyed to have him back, you will understand how much God desires for you to come back to him no matter how filthy and unworthy you may feel. He is the God of another chance if only you choose to come out of your rebellious state.
8. God is so real.
He is more real than all that you see with your bare eyes. He is more real than the physical world. He is not a phantom; neither is he a myth or an illusion. He formed all that you can see with your eyes, including you. What more do you need to assure you that he is so real? Nothing can compare to him. The truth that we know of him does not even represent a fraction of his being. Anytime you think of him or call on him, know that you have come to a real Father who is more real and more loving than your earthly parents.
9. Communication is the livewire of relationship.
You are always touching base with those that are dear to your heart, and hardly a day passes without you getting in touch with your loved ones. How then can you say that you are a lover of God if you neglect to communicate with him? Your intimacy with God can only thrive if you can maintain the habit of constantly communicating with him. Without communication, there is no relationship, and without constant communication, there is no intimacy.
10. Unconditional love is the foundation of an intimate relationship.
When you want intimacy with God, you must understand that his love for you is an unconditional one. He loves you in spite of your shortcomings and weaknesses. He also expects that you love him in spite of your present circumstances because he did not promise or guarantee a problem-free life on earth. Whether you are poor or rich, whether you are suffering a loss or physical pain, if only you do not shut the well of love in you but allow this well to still swell toward him, you will certainly emerge victorious in your walk with him.
11. Intimacy with God means intimacy with the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Christ. He is the same as the Spirit of God. He is the one who helps us connect to the Father through Christ. When you engage the Holy Spirit, you are engaging Christ and the Father. You cannot have any meaningful or intimate relationship with the Father without intimacy with the Holy Spirit. He is God with us and in us. He is Emmanuel. The Father and the Son are in the City of Heaven, but the Holy Spirit who represents the Father and the Son resides in us. The Bible declares rightly that we are the temple of the Holy Spirit. He is our immediate helper, leader, teacher, intercessor, comforter, and confidant. He knows the heart and mind of the Father and the Son. In fact, he knows all things and has been sent by the Father through Jesus to come and take residence in our hearts. He is God’s envoy plenipotentiary to us. How can you ignore him and expect to have intimacy with God? When you hear the voice of the Spirit, you have actually heard the voice of God. How is it that we are not able to relate to him when he is so close to us but think that we can relate to the Father who is in heaven? You live in the same house as the Holy Spirit, and yet you do not know him. Your spirit lives in your body, and the Holy Spirit also lives in your body. Your body is the host of your spirit and the Spirit of God. That is what it means when the word of God says that we are the temple of the Holy Spirit. It will be hypocritical on our part to shun, ignore, and neglect the Holy Spirit while we attempt to lay claim to a sound relationship with Jesus or the Father. The truth is that true intimacy with God begins with a consciousness and an intimacy with the Holy Spirit.
12. You must learn to converse audibly with God.
Each time you pray, first ask the Holy Spirit to help you commune with the Father. Also remember that you are able to reach the Father by the help of the Holy Spirit through Christ, and that each time you engage the Father, you are engaging all three at the same time. You must always understand that all three work in unison.
When you communicate audibly with God, you are invoking his tangible presence because, by your audible voice, you are affirming that he is real. By that, you are also creating an atmosphere for fellowship or relationship. It means you are in a meeting with someone who is present. You cannot communicate effectively without voicing out your feelings. Feelings carry a lot of energy, and your voice becomes the vehicle that releases that pent-up energy when you use it to communicate. Body language, gestures, and silence mean a lot in communication, and there is a place for each of them, but your voice carries a lot of weight when you deploy it in your communication with God.
13. You must practice the art of listening.
Whenever you commune with the Father, you can be assured that he will talk back to you. It is not the norm for God to be silent on you when you are in fellowship with him. It can only be an exception. It is therefore prudent that you learn to wait on him in order to hear him speak to you. Communicating with him should not be a monologue, but a dialogue. Unfortunately most believers are not used to hearing him speak. What is the point of communication if one party is always silent? Certainly, that is not in the nature of God. He certainly does speak to his children. To be able to hear God speak to you, you must practice the art of listening. When you talk to him, learn to be silent for a while. It is a conversation, and you must allow him also to speak. If you take off without a single pause, he might not stop you. When conversing with him, you must practice intermittent silence.