Skip to main content


Who Says It’s Permanent?
By Joel Osteen - Nov 02, 2018
I talked to a man who had been convicted of selling drugs as a teenager and was sentenced to forty years in prison. He’d been watching our television broadcast in prison, given his life to Christ, and had a whole new outlook. One message, I talked about how God is going to do things sooner than expected, and that took root in his spirit. When he started telling the other inmates that he was going to get out soon, they looked at him like he wasn’t all there. He had twenty-five years left. Six months later, the warden called him in and said, “We decided to commute the rest of your sentence for good behavior. You are free to go.” He was released just weeks ago, and the first place he came was to a service at Lakewood. He had big tears running down his cheeks and was so overcome with emotion that he could barely talk.

In 2 Kings 4 there was a wealthy lady who had been extraordinarily kind to the prophet Elisha. The only thing missing in her life was a child. She was barren and her husband was old. One day Elisha called her and said, “By this time next year, you will be holding a son in your arms.” She nearly passed out. That was her dream! She’d tried to have a baby for years and had already accepted that she couldn’t have a baby. She said, “Please don’t lie to me like that!” She was saying, “How can this happen? It’s impossible.” But God is a supernatural God. He can make things happen out of season. Even though she thought it was too good to be true, a year later she gave birth to a healthy son.

We all have situations that look permanent, like they’ll never turn around, dreams and goals that seem like they’re a long way off. It’s easy to get discouraged and accept that it’s not going to work out. But what you can’t see is that God is working behind the scenes. He still has every intention of bringing to pass what He promised you. All the circumstances may say it’s going to take years to get out of debt, years to accomplish that dream, years to move up to a better job, but God is going to surprise you. It’s going to happen sooner than it looks. You weren’t expecting it, but out of nowhere your health turns around, your business takes off, you break the addiction. Don’t believe the lies that say it’s permanent. You may not see anything changing, but stay in faith—you are closer than you think.
Join the Conversation