February 28, 2019

You’ll Get Back More Than You Give

‘No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.’ Psalm 84:11 NKJV In a sense, it’s impossible to ‘sacrifice’ anything for God. If you get back more than you gave up, have you sacrificed anything at all? The eternal reward always outweighs the temporal sacrifice. On Judgment Day, our only regret will be whatever we didn’t give back to God. It may seem counterintuitive, but the key to self-fulfillment is self-denial. The selfish part of us has an allergic reaction to the word deny. It’s tough to do when we live in the lap of luxury. We don’t […]
February 27, 2019

Ask God To Use You

‘A certain woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyatira, a seller of purple fabrics, a worshipper of God, was listening; and the Lord opened her heart to respond to the things spoken by Paul.’ Acts 16:14 NAS Lydia wasn’t a preacher, she was a successful businesswoman won to Christ under Paul’s ministry. As a result, her home became the first church building named in Scripture where believers met. Get rid of the idea that only preachers speak for God. Out of 168 hours in each week, preachers generally get to speak to people only one hour. Who’s going to […]
February 26, 2019

Leader​, Here’s God’s Way

‘If you do this and God so commands, you will be able to stand the strain.’ Exodus 18:23 NIV Why do we insist on doing everything ourselves? Three reasons: (1) We’re afraid others won’t do the job as well as we do—but how else are they going to learn? (2) We’re afraid they will outshine us. The Bible says, ‘In honor preferring one another.’ (Romans 12:10 KJV) (3) We think God expects us personally to do it all. Moses’ father-in-law told him: ‘Now listen to me: I will give you counsel, and God be with you. You be the people’s […]
February 25, 2019

Giant-killers (4)

‘The Lord, who saved me from the lion and the bear, will save me from this.’ 1 Samuel 17:37 GWT David prevailed because he understood the power of past successes. He told King Saul, ‘The Lord, who saved me from the lion and the bear, will save me from this Philistine.’ Observe: (1) Giant-killers build on past successes. A series of successes builds our faith and allows us to find the mix of ‘God-confidence’ and ‘self-confidence’ necessary to make us unstoppable. Without self-confidence, we fail to recognize​ God’s gifts to us. Without God-confidence, we fail to recognize​ the limitation of […]
February 24, 2019

Giant-killers (3)

‘He picked up five smooth stones.’ 1 Samuel 17:40 NLT In David’s day, they fought ‘by representation’. One man would fight for the nation as a whole, and the country of the losing warrior became subservient to the country of the conquering warrior. The upside is obvious, isn’t it? Everybody didn’t have to die! So David versus Goliath was really Israel against the Philistines. It was a one-on-one contest: winner takes all. We’re familiar with David’s victory over the giant with faith, a stone, and a slingshot. Yet Scripture tells us he picked up not one, but ‘five smooth stones’. […]
February 23, 2019

Giant-killers (2)

‘If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones.’ Luke 16:10 NLT Observe: (1) Giant-killers don’t start out as giant-killers! David was a meek musician, humble shepherd, and overlooked son. Faithfulness was his advantage—faithfulness in his talent, faithfulness with his father’s sheep, faithfulness to God. By becoming master over the small things, he became master over the large things. Faithfulness is a common characteristic of uncommon spiritual achievers. Matthew started as a tax collector; Peter as a fisherman; Elisha as a farmer; Jesus as a carpenter. Have you ever considered that Jesus spent more years […]
February 22, 2019

Giant-killers (1)

‘So David conquered the Philistine giant.’ 1 Samuel 17:50 TLB First Samuel chapter 17 is the backdrop for the story of David and Goliath. The shepherd slays the soldier. The boy conquers the giant. God gives David victory over his giant, to inspire us to confront our own giants. Giants can be tangible or intangible: the things we can’t overcome because seduced by fear, we think we can’t. They can also be unattainable goals, unfinished projects, or unfulfilled dreams—the ‘loose ends’ of life that keep us mired in mediocrity. A giant is anything or anybody keeping you from being or […]
February 21, 2019

Get Real With God

‘Let us examine our ways and test them, and let us return to the Lord.’ Lamentations 3:40 NIV When you pray, ‘Lord, make me a better person,’ in what specific areas do you want to change, grow, and mature? In order to get real with God, you must answer these twelve questions carefully and prayerfully: (1) Am I honest and above reproach in all my financial dealings? That includes giving generously to God from your income. (2) Do I put myself in sexually inappropriate situations, or expose myself to harmful material? (3) Do I spend enough time with my family, […]