One day, while worshipping, I encountered a heavenly being that resembled a baby… beautiful features, glowing face, eyes dancing with delight as it gazed upon God. I will never forget the smile on its face and the glow of utter ecstasy as it “feasted its eyes” on Him. Throughout the entire encounter, it never took its eyes off Him, and I began to realize that the sole purpose of this being’s existence was to gaze with delight at the Beautiful One. I wish I could find adequate words to describe the look of ecstasy on this being’s face or the sense of pleasure I had in being part of the agreement of heaven and earth, as we both adored Him. It was a small taste of the highest pleasure. It also brought alignment to my values, which, so many times, are earth-locked and shallow. I often succumb to the lie that being fruitful has to do with tangibly manifested and earthly measurable results. But this being was created solely to enjoy Him and obviously to be enjoyed by Him. We become what we behold, and we behold the heavenly realm first through the imagination gate. As a son of God, you will use your imagination to gaze upon (thus creating) many things, but first, you must align your gaze with the One who is altogether lovely. Everything you desire you will find in Him.
One of the most mysterious Biblical examples of becoming what you behold is found in Genesis 30-31. Jacob had worked for his father-in-law, Laban, for many years and had finally decided to leave and go back home. We see from Scripture that Laban had tricked Jacob and changed his wages many times, yet Laban had been blessed because of Jacob and didn’t want him to go. Jacob agreed to stay, under these conditions:
…I will go back and take care of your sheep. But let me go through all your flocks today and take every lamb with spots or stripes. Let me take every black young goat and every female goat with stripes or spots. That will be my pay.
–Genesis 30:32-32, ERV
Laban agreed but, true to form, he had another trick up his sleeve.
But that day Laban hid all the male goats that had spots. And he hid all the female goats that had spots on them. He also hid all the black sheep. Laban told his sons to watch these sheep.
–Genesis 30:35, ERV
What happened next is curious.
Then Jacob cut green branches from poplar and almond trees. He stripped off some of the bark so that the branches had white stripes on them. He put the branches in front of the flocks at the watering places. When the animals came to drink, they also mated in that place. Then when the goats mated in front of the branches, the young that were born were spotted, striped, or black. Jacob separated the spotted and the black animals from the other animals in the flock. He kept his animals separate from Laban’s. Any time the stronger animals in the flock were mating, Jacob put the branches before their eyes. The animals mated near those branches. But when the weaker animals mated, Jacob did not put the branches there. So the young animals born from the weak animals were Laban’s. And the young animals born from the stronger animals were Jacob’s. In this way Jacob became very rich. He had large flocks, many servants, camels, and donkeys.
–Genesis 30:37-43, ERV
In the next chapter, Jacob explains that his unorthodox plan all started with an angelic encounter and a dream:
I had a dream during the time when the animals were mating. I saw that the only male goats that were mating were the ones with stripes and spots. The angel of God spoke to me in that dream. The angel said, “Jacob!” I answered, “Yes!” The angel said, “Look, only the striped and spotted goats are mating. I am causing this to happen. I have seen all the wrong things Laban has been doing to you. I am doing this so that you can have all the new baby goats.” –Genesis 31:10-12, ERV
We see here that the miracle of the spotted and striped livestock was clearly God-initiated and angel-executed. But, as always, God works in the earth realm through man. And in this miracle, God gave Jacob a dream enabling him to see it first with his imagination. Then, Jacob placed a tangible, visible anchor in the earth realm as a point of agreement with what he had already seen in the spirit. And as he placed this “vision board” before the eyes of the livestock, even they lined up, giving birth to young that resembled what they had seen!
If you are not proactively governing and using your imagination, it will continue to recreate the programming of your subconscious and unconscious minds… and you will continue getting more of what you have already experienced. If your life experience has been difficult, you have the opportunity to change it. If your life experience has been wonderful, you have the opportunity to exponentially multiply that wonder, for the good of others, for the glory of God and for the advancement of His kingdom here. A mature son harnesses the energy of his imagination, mastering it and using it for the purposes of God.
Next week, I’ll share how “The Was, the Is and the Is To Come” is inviting you to dream with Him… and to re-write your story!
Keep beholding and becoming…