Have you ever had the thought, "Hmm, something just doesn't seem right here."
"I'm doing all the right things, reading my bible, going to church, I'm even tithing ...so where's my blessing?"
"Why am I still struggling?"
"Why is my money still tight?"
Of course it does, we've all had that conversation with ourselves at some point.
Let's examine and see what is really going on here so we can get it fixed
First off, we usually have these thoughts when comparing ourselves to others, and it's usually in the financial realm.
We see that so and so over there (who is about your same age) has a bigger house, nice new cars, and a high paying job or prosperous business, and we say to ourselves, (or really, to God) "What the heck? Why is he doing so well? I've been going to church longer than him. I've been giving to the poor. I give more money than him. I probably read my bible more than him too. What am I missing?"
I've said those exact same things many, many times.
And I think it's a valid question.
When we see these results in someone else's lives, you want those same results. Therefore, you want to make sure you are doing what is required to get those results.
Makes sense, right?
But here's what we must remember, there are certain things that can "block your blessings" and keep you from prospering to the full.
Thankfully, the Bible lays them out for us. Let's take a look at what the Word says so we can make adjustments going forward.
Don't skim over these, dig into them.
I truly believe that we have deceived ourselves thinking these five "blessing blockers" don't apply to us.
Let's take a closer look
Blessing Blocker 1: Disobedience
Now before you write this one off, take a second and think about it.
When we hear "disobedience" our minds instantly go to the big stuff like getting drunk, sex outside of marriage, partying, drugs etc. I know most of you reading this aren't doing those sort of things, BUT perhaps the Lord has told you to forgive someone and you haven't.
Maybe the Lord told you to bless your brother with $200 but you didn't do it, because that may seem hard to do right now.
Maybe the Lord has told you to go back to college and become a school teacher but you haven't, you reason that you're older, or you currently make more money than a teacher does anyway.
In Deuteronomy 28:1-14, God promises us that "If we obey the voice of the Lord," then ALL these blessings will come upon us and overtake us.
But verse 15 tells us that if we DON'T obey the voice of the Lord, then those blessings will NOT come upon us.
Blessing Blocker 2: Covering Your Sins
This is another interesting one. Proverbs 28:13 says, "He who covers his sins will not prosper, But whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy."
We often cover our sins in our own minds and hearts by not owning up to them and taking responsibility for them.
More practically, perhaps you covered your sin today when you started bashing your boss to your coworkers today, but then justified it because your boss is greedy and doesn't pay you enough, or you feel like you haven't gotten the praise you think you deserve.
Or you reason with those around you, that "It's not my fault our money is tight at my house, my boss didn't give me that raise he said he would.
Don't cover up your sin, don't justify your actions or your situation, just repent.
Own up to it, take the blame, change and live free!
Blessing Blocker 3: Your Words
In Deuteronomy 30:19, God did something amazing for us: " I call heaven and earth to witness this day against you that I have set before you life and death, the blessings and the curses; therefore choose life...."
God set before us blessings and the cursing, He said we get to pick what type of life we want to live. So how do we choose the blessing and life?
Proverbs 18:21 tells us that, "Death and life are in the power of the tongue." That means we get to choose life, by choosing our words.
Proverbs 18:20 AMP reveals this truth: "A man's [moral] self shall be filled with the fruit of his mouth; and with the consequence of his words he must be satisfied [whether good or evil]"
There is a consequence to my words.
Whether good or evil. My choice.
Blessing Blocker 4: Offense
Matthew 11:22-25 tells us that if we don't forgive others, then our faith is hindered. And that we must forgive others so that our Father will forgive our sins too.
Are you offended often?
I know I've had hundreds of opportunities to be offended, especially in the church world, but I've learned over the years that this can be one of the most dangerous grounds to walk on.
Being offended is rooted in pride. You get offended when YOU are passed over for something.
When your boss doesn't pick you for the promotion.
When your pastor doesn't ask you to speak, or doesn't pick you to lead a small group. Even though you've been around longer than others and know more than them.
When your manager says he likes your idea of the company, but then doesn't use it and goes a different direction.
You then begin to isolate yourself, a root of bitterness begins to grow, you murmur and complain about your pastor, you start to infect others to try to get them to see things from your filter ... it's a downward spiral.
And it will block your blessings.
Forgive everyone quickly, do it now and move on.
Blessing Blocker 5: Being Stingy
I think God's financial wisdom is fascinating. It's literally the exact opposite of what the world teaches.
Proverbs 11:24-25 shows us the key to becoming wealthy: "Give freely and become more wealthy; be stingy and lose everything. The generous will prosper..."
Another translation puts it this way:
"Some give freely and still get richer, while others are stingy but grow still poorer. The person who blesses others will prosper..."
He literally tells us the decision-making process that will make you wealthy and prosperous: Give freely and be generous.
So how do we lose everything and grow poor?
But stingy doesn't mean what you think it means. Most of us would say that we're not stingy. We often think stingy people are greedy people rubbing their hands together with an evil, money hoarding plot...
But then I looked up the definition,
The definition of stingy is "unwilling to give, unwilling to spend, ungenerous."
Can you see that?
Unlock Your Blessing
Now that you know the five main blessing blocker, what are you going to do about it?
You can say, "Oh those don't apply to me, the reason I'm broke right now is __." And fill in that blank with some justified excuse...
Or, you can take 20 minutes on your drive to work today and examine yourself.
Say, "God I ask you to show me if there is anything in my life that is blocking my blessing. I want to own up to it, I take full responsibility. Show me the areas I need to improve in so we can weed them out."
Then be silent.
Listen to what He tells you.
Then do it. Repent. Fix it. And move forward.
And one last tip:
After you've weeded out your blessing blockers, the next step is to expect blessings to flow in your life!
Look for them, expect them, keep an open eye for them.
When you walk into a job interview, expect to get it!
When you enter a contest, expect to win it!
When there's a big sale or business deal coming up, expect to close it!
You walk in the blessing now, it's who you are, you are a Blessed One.
Get used to it.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on Faith Life Money. It has been modified and republished here with permission.