We have been looking at the topic of authority. Authority is not the same as power, but authority will manifest in power. You can have power without having authority, but you cannot have authority without access to the power needed to demonstrate that authority. A lot of people want power, but not so many want true authority. Authority relates to responsibility. It is a God-given substance that requires us to be responsible to God for receiving it and giving it for the life and well being of others. We need to be a people who want authority. This has nothing to do with control or power. It has to do with the ability to give life to others.
We don’t get our identity from our authority. We get our identity from being children of God. Authority is a measure of responsibility given by God to bring life to the world. Everyone has an authority. We need to learn to be who we are and we need to learn to live in the measure of authority given to us by God.
Authority is not who you will be, or who you want to be. It is who you are. We might be called to be a prophet, but today we are serving with the responsibility of a janitor. Our authority is as a janitor. We must prove to be faithful in our responsibilities as a janitor. We may be the parents of three children, but we are not the parents of everyone’s children. Our authority today is directly related to our authority of yesterday and it is paramount to our authority tomorrow.
Today some receive me as an apostle in their lives. Some people receive me as a prophet, or a teacher, a mentor, or an instructor of some kind. I have been a believer for forty years and I did not imagine that I would one day have the responsibility of bringing God’s word and life to the nations. Thinking back I can see how my responsibilities in the journey have related to my authority today. In 1974 I was a young man in a growing church and I found myself serving in many practical areas. One area was that of taking care of a dog named Smokey. He was a black chow and he belonged to an apostolic leader in the church. It was my job to make sure that none of Smokey’s dog droppings remained in the yard. I was a super-duper-pooper-scooper! There were times when I did yard work, washed the car, or even watched the man’s children. I believe that my role of service was instrumental to the apostolic call that is upon my own life. When Smokey got out it was my job to find him. I was a servant to that dog so that one day I could be a servant to men. We must be faithful in every phase of our lives in order to be faithful in the furtherance of our lives.
What is the basis of authority? The basis of authority and the basis of dominion is who you are. Authority is received and fulfilled. It‘s not who you want to be or what you decide to be. Authority is not what you do. It is who you are. You could do many things! No matter what you do, your authority is going to be seen. Others will recognize it! Your faithfulness in one area will be seen in every area of your life.
There are practical authorities as well as spiritual ones. If you are a painter, your authority is to paint. If you are a man you have the authority to be a man. If you are a woman you have the authority to be a woman. You can seek to be what you are not, but the evidence will be proven by your inability to bear the fruit of inheritance. If you cannot paint you won’t be able to bear the fruit of being a painter. You will produce the works of a mess, but you won’t bear the fruit of the necessary testimony of painting. You may be a man who wants to be a woman but you cannot bear the fruit of a woman. You can change your appearance and even your actions, but the testimony of who you are will prevent you from bearing the fruit of inheritance. The best you can attain to is a right or a power to be, but you do not carry the authority of life. If you are a man grasping to be a woman, your influence as a woman will be a measure of power for self-will, self-gratification, and a self-minded destiny.
A lot of people want power, but they are not interested in authority. If you walk in a realm of power alone it will produce death. What you are going to do to be tomorrow has nothing to do with what you are doing today, but what you are doing today will prove to be valuable tomorrow. What you are today is really for eternity!
What you are doing today is the most important thing in your life because it has everything to do with what you are going to be doing tomorrow.
Years ago I had a job delivering packages for UPS. I had the responsibility of delivering packages in a professional and timely manner. I had to be both diligent and efficient in my job. Because I was a believer I knew that doing my job well was very important. I also had a desire in my heart to understand what my spiritual destiny was in this world. One day God spoke to me, “I have called you to be an intercessor”. My first thought at His words was that intercession is something that women do. All I could think of was women who prayed with mystic sensitivity and diligence. I questioned Him about perhaps the call of an apostle, a prophet, and evangelist, a pastor, or a teacher. His confirming words to me were those of being an intercessor. I spent the next week praying and seeking God on the subject. I read a book written by Derrick Prince on the topic of prayer and fasting. At the end of the week I received a revelation that intercession was the highest call that anyone could have in life. I realized that intercession was the very job that Jesus was doing at the right hand of the Father in heaven. Intercession was what the Holy Spirit was doing in the life of every believer. I remember answering that call. It was a sunny morning in Fort Worth, Texas when I stepped out of the door of my UPS truck and said yes to the call of intercession as I walked up a sidewalk to deliver a package to a door. Today I am considered by some to be an apostle. To others I am a prophet. To many I am a teacher, a mentor, and an instructor of life. In all of these things I am still an intercessor. Even as a UPS driver I was an intercessor. An intercessor is someone who has one foot in heaven and the other in the earth and draws heaven into every earthly place he finds himself. I did that as a UPS driver. I didn’t just deliver packages. I delivered a touch of heaven to every person I delivered a package to. My attitude, words, ambiance, and every form of expression were about bringing life to those that I came in contact with. My call as an intercessor delivering packages was as essential as my role as an intercessor in the role of an apostle. I am called by God to bring the power of grace and the life of His living covenant to the barren places of this world.
If you don’t focus on today, you will be discontent, disillusioned, and disconnected. Authority comes from responsibility. Who you are today is as essential as who you will be tomorrow. We are called by God to bring life to this world wherever we find ourselves in life. We are called to be people of authority in this world.
Food For Thought,
Ted J. Hanson