Tag Archives: John

Spirituality: Striving and Developing on the Path

When Jesus said, “Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able” (Luke 13:24), there is the reminder of discipline involved in continuing to walk day after day in a committed Christian life.  It is a formidable challenge to consider to not to allow the shadows and underbrush overshadowing the walk to hinder  progressing toward the goal that is just ahead on the jagged road called strait.

The grim reality presented in what Jesus said,  “Strive”, indicates a life of resistance against elements that are always present, which constantly oppose success toward a direction called the “strait gate”.  The truth is that, unless there is a tenacious commitment to embrace the calling of the “strait” direction with total dependence on God, it is not likely that striving in human effort alone will keep you on the path. Nevertheless, what is apparent indicates that there is a ongoing struggle to live in a “strait” way, but the question remains about what the struggle is with?

Is it the struggle with the road of life chosen or a struggle with the way the road leads life?

A calming reminder from the psalmist says, “the ways (steps) of a righteous man are ordered by the Lord (Psalms 37). Comfort and assurance are given to us living on the path of righteousness indicating that it is a ordered way – God is involved in every step taken.  The confidence given from the psalmist affirms that there is not a step taken or resistance faced that He has not already prepared for in our steps.  On the path, a discovery comes that there is a way that seems right, which may feel right, looks right –the path of least resistance.  At this place of understanding, a decision has to be made to have trust during the struggle or to give way to the temptation to the impulse to run away from the “set path”, the ordered way, which is “strait” and characterized by “striving”.

A challenging concept in the statement comes as Jesus says, “Strive to enter” A question that arises is what exactly are we striving with, while entering the “strait gate?”  Many people see this as a struggle in becoming a Christian, or the struggle in surrendering to Christ. However, what must be noted is that striving is a continual struggle on the “ordered path”.  If it is believed that God gives salvation freely, it is hard to accept that this is struggling for salvation.  It seems that the struggle is pointing to an important understanding about what we struggle with the most in life,  surrender of control to live under control to God alone.  Our striving is not with God, salvation, or receiving grace – it is a struggle with a thing called depravity that haunts the soul of man with unbelief, selfishness, and a propensity toward a disobedient and unfruitful lifestyle.  It is a struggle with self to a life of surrender.


Alive in Christ through a Surrendered Life

To surrender Takes SacrificeI am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me (Galatians 2:20).

 To accept the claims of Christ on my life and wear the name Christian indicates that a transformational process has occurred.  I have thought at times that to live for Christ that we need to have a funeral service for the old life and a christening of the new life that announces to the world that “old things have passed away and all things have been made new”.  The approach taken by many is the blending of the old life with the new into a more palatable version of the old that will fit into the suit of Christianity and give the appearance to the church world that we are now Christian. 

Unfortunately, we cannot whitewash the outside and experience transformation, it requires and internal process of change that spiritually transforms what a person was, “dead in sins and trespasses” to a living person whose life is governed, guided, and guarded by the Spirit of God living within.  To be exact, it is a life that is filled with the Spirit, conformed to the Spirit, and under the control of the Spirit.  It is not the soulish expressions of a religious person behaviorally modified to meet the expectations of religious notions about what spiritual looks, acts, or feels like in human terms.  Rather, it is the radical transformation that takes place when the power of death dies to death and is replaced by new life in Christ through the indwelling and in-filling of the Holy Spirit.

For a Christian, death to the power of sin over their life is an “act of the will” and a “reckoning” of life as alive through the power of the Spirit dwelling within.  It is not the human spirit surrendered to religious social mores’, but it is a Spiritual transformation that occurs through a sovereign act of God who “rebirths” what is dead—under the power of death to life brought by the Spirit.  Every Christian who is born of the Spirit has died to the reign of death, but cannot experience the blessed victorious life energized by the in-living Christ, until surrender, breaks the will to resurrect the past life, “lived in the passions of the flesh”.  Being crucified with Christ is to become one with Jesus Christ

Therefore, a person must be willing not only to give up the power of sin reigning in the flesh and in the mind.  Also being “crucified with Christ” means to surrender a complete way of looking at things governed by human perspective.  Being born again by the Spirit of God means that we are enabled with the capacity to let go of a life that is ruled by death to a life that is governed by the Spirit.  The crucified life is the sacrifice of something that brings death in order to grasp something else that brings spiritual life.  The first thing we must surrender is all of our religious pretense or deceit that hides the truth when we are just going through the motions.  What our Lord wants us to present to Him is not our goodness, honesty, or our efforts to do better, but real surrender from death to spiritual life. 

Then, what He gives us in exchange for our sin and death is real solid righteousness that is the product of a spiritual life.  However, we must surrender all pretenses that we are anything, and give up all our claims on this life in humility to Him.  Once we have initially surrendered, the Spirit of God will show us what we need to surrender next.  Along each step of this process, we will have to give up our claims to our rights to ownership of life.  Are we willing to surrender our control on all that we appear to possess, our desires, and everything in our lives?  The critical question: Are we ready to identify with the death of Jesus Christ in total surrender?

If you are faced with the question of whether or not to surrender, remember no one can make that decision for you.  By surrendering, all that you have and all that you are to Him you are freed to experience the transformation of the Spirit that will equip you to do all that He requires of you every day of your life.

Prayer for today: Father, separate me from the power of death reigning over my life.  May my life be crucified with Christ and breath into my life, the life of God, surrender to the Spirit, and a walk in the Spirit?  Remove from my life the stain of sin, the influence of the world, and the weakness to acquiesce to the expectations of a worldview that is removed from the thoughts and ways of God.  May I be alive unto God and led by your Spirit, transformed and renewed through Christ? 

Enhanced by Zemanta

The Priority of Worship

What is the most important of all of the things that God calls on believer’s Woman at Wellto do?

Some people would identify this as a task, but I believe that it is better expressed through a relationship activity.  Think back to the Garden of Eden where a solitary man was created; then placed in the world to be a worshiping being.  The historical example says: God placed him there and during the cool of the day the voice of the Lord would come down and Adam and Eve would have fellowship with the Lord God.  The book of tells us that they heard the voice of God walking in the garden and they hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God. 

 There in the Garden, God had placed them there to have a relationship to God that was intended to give reverence to God in all their duties. 

 What was the most important of all of the things that God called Adam and Eve to do?  (To live in a worshiping relationship)

Has this changed?

 The scriptures presents worship, as the central motif of all the things that God calls believer’s to do. A.W.Tozer describes worship as the missing Jewel of the evangelical church.  It is what we need the most, but what we are missing.

The Book of Revelation suggests that much of what is taking place in heaven is worship ‑ Ch. 4 even suggests that some who will never stop worshiping the Lamb on the throne.

10  the twenty‑four elders will fall down before Him who sits on the throne, and will  worship Him who lives forever and ever, and will cast their crowns before the throne, saying, 11  “Worthy art Thou, our Lord and our God, to receive glory and honor and power; for  Thou didst create all things, and because of Thy will they existed, and were created.

Because true worship is about God. It is not about man.  (It is not about what we can get out of it, or how we respond to it or even whether we feel like it.  Worship is about God and what He demands of us. We need to understand the importance of worship.

This passage is very typical of how people are many times distracted from a meaningful relationship with Christ

She asks three questions, which are controversial. 

  1. The Samaritan woman asked Jesus why He was asking a Samaritan woman for drink of water?
  2. If He is greater than Jacob?
  3. Where should people worship?

True Worshipers are Desired by the Father.  (v. 23)

John 4:23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshipers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.

 The central fact of scripture is not that we are seeking God, but rather that He is seeking worshipers.  John 15:16

 16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and [that] your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.

 God is seeking disciples to be worshipers of God.

 To say that He requires worship may be an understatement ‑ in truth He demands worship ‑ even before our service He expects our worship

 In Ezekiel 44  the primary function of the Levitical priesthood was to minister unto the Lord ‑ this was to precede all other work..

 Ezek 44:15 But the priests the Levites, the sons of Zadok, that kept the charge of my sanctuary when the children of Israel went astray from me, they shall come near to me to minister unto me, and they shall stand before me to offer unto me the fat and the blood, saith the Lord GOD: 16 They shall enter into my sanctuary, and they shall come near to my table, to minister unto me, and they shall keep my charge.

 The scripture teaches us that we have become that Royal Priesthood.

 1 Peter 2:9 But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.

 We now have the same priority –To minister unto the Lord

 Luke 10:38‑42.  Jesus Mary and Martha

 38  Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain village: and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house. 39 And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard his word. 40 But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone?  Bid her therefore that she help me.41 And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things:42 But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.

 God requires of us our worship before He requires our service.  The truth is that He requires that worship regardless of how we feel.

 A Minister was approached by one of his congregants who asked if it was right for him to  come to the services when he did not feel like it.  Said he sometimes enjoyed the experience, but there were times when he felt like he was being hypocritical when he came because he did not enjoy it.

 The wise minister replied, “Do you only pay the grocer’s bill and the react when you feel like it?

Worship is a debt discharged independently of our feelings; Worship is giving unto the Lord the glory DUE unto His name; hence, “it is obligatory on Christians.”

Enhanced by Zemanta

Having A Settled Peace In Stormy Times

Holland Light House SunsetYou may not be experiencing a difficult time right now. From your perspective everything may be sunny and clear. However, storms come to everyone’s life sooner or later.

At times, storms roll over our lives with bounding blows and devastate life. A question that many of us have  is how do we maintain a sense of peace and spiritual balance when trials strike?

The answer is found in a close abiding relationship with Jesus Christ. And the words of Helen Lemmel’s hymn, “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus,” which contain a vital and exciting truth that an unshakable peace is available to all who turn the eyes of their hearts to Jesus in faith.

Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus

O soul, are you weary and troubled? No light in the darkness you see?
There’s light for a look at the Savior, and life more abundant and free!
Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
look full in his wonderful face,
and the things of earth will
grow strangely dim
in the light of his glory and grace

Chances are when adversity strikes, one of the first things you do is to wonder why this is happening to you. The second thing may be to question what kind of impact it will have on your life, both now and in the future. Obviously, reactions such as these are normal, but there needs to be another response included and that response is to turn to the One who holds all comfort and security firmly within His grasp.

As we grow in our relationship to Christ, we discover that life is not always predictable. In fact, there are sorrows and tragedies built into the framework of our existence that we seldom anticipate. The principle that we learn is that if our peace and security rests only within ourselves or some other person we will face disappointment. The obvious truth is that when trials come there is a greater chance we will experience great disappointment that is beyond our ability to manage alone.

What we learn is that one of the first steps in dealing with anxiety is to recognize that it is the opposite of peace. Anxiety is the fan that flames the fires of doubt and confusion that troubles us to the point of unmanageable worry.  In addition, anxiety has the ability to leave us helplessly bundled up in worry and fear, which paralyzes life. Consequently, when we cave in to thoughts of anxiety, we lose our spiritual focus and mindset. The key to overcoming anxiety is found only in the presence of God.

Paul admonishes us: “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7).

Isaiah‘s words are simple but true: “In repentance and rest you shall be saved, in quietness and trust is your strength” (Isaiah 30:15). If we are going to be spiritually successful, we must come to a point where we realize that nothing surprises God. He knows when tragedy is going to strike or when disappointment is going to hit, and He has a plan for handling these.

Nothing is too great for Him. He has promised to provide for your needs ¬ perfectly, completely, and on time. (Philippians 4:19) If He does not answer a certain prayer immediately, it is for a reason. Usually if we are willing to wait for His timing, we will find that He has a greater blessing in store.

Accepting His timetable and the limitations He places on a given situation helps to dispel rising anxiety. Therefore, let Him provide for you in His timing. Keeping a daily journal of your prayers and how He answers each one is a good way to build your faith and trust in Him.

When you accept life as being given to you from the hand of God then you will do what Helen Lemmel’s song says – you turn your eyes toward Jesus. You will look full into His glorious face and find mercy and grace, forgiveness and hope, peace and everlasting security.

Peter wanted to walk on the water to Jesus. Like a child, he wanted to imitate his teacher. Surely Peter’s faith made God’s heart glad, especially as he stepped out and began walking to his Savior. But suddenly the roar of the wind and the crashing of the sea became monsters in his mind. Fear swept through his being, and he began to sink. This is when he cried out: “Lord, save me!” and Jesus reached down and took him by the hand. (Matthew 14:30-31)

What would you give to experience the peace of God in your life? Would you give up worrying? Are you willing to lay down the anger that haunts your soul because someone has done something to hurt or wound you? God knows the hurt you have experienced. Will you trust Him in quietness knowing that He has not forgotten you, but stands ready to heal you?

We call God’s peace unshakable, because there has never been a time or an event when God has been disturbed. His peace and presence are sure. They are immovable

To Pray or Not To Pray – The Spiritual Connection to God

Prayer is the languageAre you preparing for God to send spiritual awakening or accepting spiritual apathy? It seems that we are living in a time when moral decay and spiritual apathy have overtaken many and destroyed any hope of things getting better. I want to remind you that two thousand years ago, when Jesus was crucified, the world had just experienced its darkest moment. The world had just rejected Jesus and nailed Him to a cross. For the disciples, it seemed as if the world had come to an end and all of their hopes were dashed into pieces.

It was in the midst of that darkness that Jesus appeared to His disciples and reassured their hopes and dreams. Before Jesus ascended to heaven, He told His disciples, “… tarry in Jerusalem until you are endued with power.” Jesus was telling His disciples that they needed to prepare for a time of spiritual awakening. These people spent forty day in an upper room praying. When the Holy Spirit began to move Peter stood up and said that this was predicted by the prophet Joel.

Why is it that we need to pray?

We need to pray because prayer is a reminder that God is in control of what we cannot control. When we pray it is an open confession that we believe that God is greater than the problems of our world.

We need to pray because there are things that we cannot do without God’s assistance. Think of the challenges that you are facing in your life. When we pray about these issues God empowers us to face these issues with an inner confidence. Prayer reminds me of my insufficiency and God’s sufficiency. We need to pray because we are going to face opposition in life. The scripture constantly reminds us of the adversarial work of Satan and the opposition of evil men to the work of the gospel. We need to pray because God is the only one who change the outcomes of life. Many times we do not know what the future will hold or what the outcomes of life will bring.

When we pray, we are asking God to take charge of the future and saying that we trust Him with whatever it brings.

Jesus told his disciples to pray for God’s will to be done on earth as it is in heaven. It is God’s will for spiritual awakening to come. One of the great hindrances to God moving is the absence of corporate and private prayer among God’s people. In the church we sing for an hour until we can get to spiritual enough to listen to an hour of preaching that produces nothing lasting.

In the early church they prayed 50 days preached for a few minutes and the result was 5000 being saved, the church was inaugurated, and the world was changed.

It seems that that our theology should include some knee-ology. It is apparent that modern churches and thinking is engulfed with a sense of pride and arrogance that says we are helping God with method-ology that is infused with a powerless anthropocentric view of the God achieves His purposes through the church.

The fact is that God does not need our help in accomplishing His will. He demands our devotion, worship, and obedience. Not to the commands and tradition of men, but to, “the law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus.”

Individuals by choice choose to be a part of powerless, problem apathy that enables a crippled system of delivery that is political, sociological, psychological …. Or submitting to the sovereignty of God and the Lordship of Christ and making a commitment to be an active part of solution to the need for spiritual awakening in the church. The real question is: what are you willing to do to see change happen for the best in the life of the body of Christ?

James says, “The fervent, effectual prayer of a righteous man availed much…”

Related Articles

God, If You Really Know Everything, I Need Some Advice

Advice“If I could have known in the past what I know today, I probably would have made some different decisions.” It seems that these words are reminiscent of what Solomon wrote while discussing the futility of what has happened in life. We may think that if we knew the future that we would alter or maybe change what would be done. However, a perplexing fact about the omniscience of God is that He already knows the future but doesn’t try to change it, because He has already provided for everything that will ever come up in our lives. Yes, God knows all about us, past, present, future, even before we were born.

This truth is presented in Psalm 139:16 where a description is given of what God knows about us, “The days allotted to me had all been recorded in your book before any of them ever began.” When God looks at our existence, it is with a complete understanding of every moment, success, failure, and event that occurs. Unfortunately, many who look at their life or the life of others see failure, problems, defeat. However, when God looks at our life, even though it may not have been perfect, we face challenges, or insurmountable problems the narrative of scripture indicates that when God looks at our lives that he has hope for a future. In Jeremiah 29:11, even though God’s people have failed miserably, the message that God gives is that it isn’t the end—there is hope for a bright future: “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to give you hope and a future.” He has a plan for what is going to happen, really– He knows your future.

Everybody is interested in the future and trying to predict what will happen and develop logistical plans. It’s interesting to me the things people will try to know what the future holds: astrology, horoscopes, reading tea leaves, consulting with people, bio-rhythms. People try all kinds of things trying to figure out what’s going to happen next. They are going to the wrong source. There is somebody who knows what’s going to happen next – it is the omniscient Father who is God. The fact is, God sees my tomorrow, today. He already sees the things we’ll face. He knows my future.

Do you know that God is not limited by time? He can be in the past, the present, and the future all at the same time. It’s like if you were in the Goodyear Blimp looking down on the Rose Bowl Parade. You could see the beginning of the parade and the end of the parade all at the same time, without even stopping it. God, from His perspective, can see past, present, and future all at once. He sees all my tomorrows, today. That gives me great confidence in God.

Isn’t it comforting to understand that He knows everything that is going to happen in my life? He not only knows about the future, He’s there. He not only walks with you day by day, but He’s actually out there in the future. He’s already prepared for everything you’re going to face — tomorrow, next week, and next month.

What happens in the future may surprise us but it’s not going to surprise God. God is not in heaven wringing His hands, wondering what will happen next–nothing ever catches Him by surprise. The crisis that you’ll experience next month, next year, or whenever, the inevitable crisis that catches you and you ask, “What’s happening? Where is God?” God’s been there all along, preparing. He knows your future. He is in your future and He’s prepared for everything. That gives me confidence. I know when I hit that crisis, it may surprise me, but it hasn’t surprised God.

So if God knows the future and it is what it is, then do we just surrender to fate? In the book of James it says, “If any man lack wisdom let him ask God” — Our response is if I know that God knows all my tomorrows, today, then I should ask for advice. Yes, it is true –He knows what’s going to happen. In Jeremiah 33:3 it says, “Call unto Me and I will answer you and I will show you great and mighty things that you know not.” The things you don’t know, God can tell you about. He’s not going to lay out your whole life all at once, telling you everything that will happen in your life. If He did you’d get very discouraged or full of pride or both. He will lay it out a little at a time. He says, “Call to me. I’ll give you advice because I know what’s going to happen!” From God’s perspective, since He knows everything that’s going to happen, you can ask Him for advice now.

Did you know that God knows all our faults and failures and He still loves us? God knows all of our frustrations and my feelings and He cares. Yes, God knows all of the future and will respond with wisdom, if we ask Him today.

Related Articles

How Pupose and Gifts Keep Us On Track

How Purpose and Gifts Keep Us On Track

Your More Important Than You Realize

Discover Your Purpose In Life And It Will Keep You  On Track

Do you ever wonder why you are where you are and what you should be doing with your life?  In all honesty, there are times when I have to reassess what I am doing.  This is something that humans have struggled with from the very beginning of time. In the garden of Eden, God gave Adam and Eve a reason for existence and something to do with their lives.

Using Biblical precepts, the Christian can discover the purpose of life, design his or her destiny, and direct their achievement.

1. Remember that you are “called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8:28).

 Don’t think that by tapping into your human resources you will be where you’re supposed to be in your life. There is an expression that is used about some preachers, “they are momma called and daddy sent”. The fact is that only God can send us and when he does, he gifts us with the ability, talent, and skill to work within that calling. God will give evidence of those gifts and others will recognize the gift and follow by acknowledging your anointing to operate in that gift.

2. Take command of your life by submitting to God’s control of your life. (Romans 12 and 13).

Working for God is not a popularity contest, it is a spiritual calling to leadership and ministry of the gifts He has given us. That means: Functioning in a local church body in the gift God has given you along with others in submission to God. Think about the second part of God’s Great Commission, as Paul explains (I Cor. 12:15-17), the individual Christian cannot function alone. Each is like a specific part of the human body. The finger cannot function unless the brain does. The lungs must work well before the foot can carry the body. All parts of the body – and all parts of the church – must work in harmony and in submission to a Divine order God has set in place.

3. Share your Christian life with those around to bear the fruit of the purpose and gift you have to create lasting spiritual change. (John 15)

Realize that all spiritual fruit comes from being rightly related to God and comes in a life of surrender and submission. What are your dreams and desires? They usually come under four headings: spiritual, intellectual, physical, and those related to your personality, attitudes, and emotions. Ask yourself, am I asking God to bless what I want or have I decided to surrender to what He has called me for and gifted me to do? One way to know if we are gifted in a particular area is whether there is spiritual fruit from what we are doing and does it produce lasting change in people’s lives. When we decide to join God in what He is doing in there will be fruit and the fruit will bring spiritual change and lasting effect on the lives of people that we minister the gift to.

4. Pinpoint your social desires and ask yourself: Are my desires and goals the same as the Heavenly Fathers? (Colossians 3:1)

Think about your relationships with family, spouse, co-workers, people you associate with in organizations, and those in your church. Does you attitude reflect a perspective to others that I want God to be in control and that I am going to live a life under control, led by the Holy Spirit? If not; then fine-tune your goals to reflect the goals of God. This has to do with what we value –where our affections are set. God’s purpose in life is for us to be where He intends for us to be. It is being a good steward and being passionate about the right things. A lot of people spend their money in the wrong places and end up loosing everything they value most. Likewise, many people spend their lives in places and trying to exercise gifts that they don’t have and never have a productive life of value in the kingdom of heaven. The real issue is being a good steward of what God has gifted me to do, not what I want, or others want.

5. Where your heart is, there will be your treasure also. Do what you love. (Matt. 6:21).

A critical question that we have to ask ourselves in Christian ministry is why are we doing what we are doing. Is it for the approval that we get from others or is what we love to do because God has called us to do this ministry. Malcolm Forbes said, “Whatever you like to do, just find a way of doing it. The biggest mistake people make in life is not trying to make a living at doing what they most enjoy.” People who have their hearts connected to their work have evidence that manifests in what they do. They are enthusiastic, they take great time to think about it–pray about it, and have a desire to make what they do reflect excellency and bring glory to God. They are leaders and where they lead people to is to a higher place with God and not to complacency. When we love what we do like Jesus loves what He does, we will surrender to the gift, calling, and ministry that He has gifted us to do.

6. Ministry is the motive —Spiritual gifts are to minister help to someone who needs what you have to offer. (I Corinthians 12).

There is no more noble occupation than assisting another human being, or in helping someone succeed. Some of the reasons that people do not succeed at what they are gifted at are evident by: The motive is misplaced, it is about me and my rights; there has been little discipleship and personal spiritual growth; there is a spirit of pride and rebellion; and there has been no training and mentoring by a spiritually mature mentor. One thing that I remember that Joe Dubose said is a call to ministry is a call to prepare. Many people fail at the tasks of ministry because the motive is wrong from the beginning. It first has to be about God and then be about what God wants to do in people’s lives through the gift.

 Once you discover your God-ordained purpose, you must hold it under the brightness of God’s scrutiny and ask yourself: Is my attitudes, gift, and my ministry pleasing to God?

7. There is wisdom in a multitude of counselors –Seek wise counsel from spiritually mature people. (Proverbs 11:14).

Surround yourself with people you know and trust – and who know you, your strengths and weaknesses. Tap into their wisdom and experience, ask for their candid appraisal. One way that I can evaluate what I am doing is to find trustworthy people who are objective, functional, and will tell me the truth. So, often people just mirror back to us what we want to hear and are afraid of hurting our feelings. Sometimes we need to hear some painful truth in order to keep us humble before God and keep us from making fatal mistakes about what are purpose, gifts, and ministry means. Resisting the need to tell people the truth does not help them, it hurts them by re-enforcing the misconceptions they already have. There is a way to find where we belong in the ministry and it is not a popular vote, it is by a particular purpose of a sovereign God who created us for His glory.

8. If you are wondering where God wants you to be in this life, then create your own mission statement and ask yourself four questions about your purpose:

1. WHY do you have this purpose in life?

2 . WHO are you? (What have you accomplished to date? What is the code you live by?)

3. WHAT do you plan to accomplish in your destiny?

4 . WHEN are these goals to be achieved? (You must have a time line.)

9. Build an Action Plan: Determine how you will achieve your goals.

Start with the overview, details can come later.

10. Ask yourself,

Is this really what I believe the Lord has planned for me?

Am I passionate about this? Can I give my life to this?” Believe that “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” (Phil. 4:13).