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God Can, Even Though I Can’t

God Can, Even Though I Can’t

Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. 2 Corinthians 3:5 (NIV) The only way you will fulfill God’s destiny for you this decade is to rely on God’s strength. And that means you have to confess ‘I can’t’ before you can agree ‘God can.’ Otherwise, we’ll just keep thinking there’s still some ability (competency, sufficiency) in us that will allow us – independent of God – to do the things he expects of us during this Decade of Destiny. We’ll continue to believe, wrongly, that we can do some things, perhaps all things, apart from God. We’ll keep applying the pretzel logic that we can make decisions disconnected from God that somehow keep us connected to God’s plans for us. And when we make choices disconnected and independent from God, there is little difference between the way we live our lives and the way non-believers live their lives. “But people who aren’t Christians can’t understand these truths from God’s Spirit. It all sounds foolish to them because only those who have the Spirit can understand what the Spirit means.” (1 Corinthians 2:14 NLT) You have the Holy Spirit inside you. You have the ability to understand when God is telling you to take steps toward his goals for your life. Ask him to teach you to hear his still small voice and to help you take the steps he tells you to take. Then, look for the ways he guides you through the decisions and details of your life. For the next few weeks, keep a list of all the times you sense God giving you direction. This will help you to see that he is at work in your life and that he has a constant interest in the details of your...

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He Answers You

He Answers You

TODAY’S SCRIPTURE “I will answer them before they even call to Me…” (Isaiah 65:24, NLT) TODAY’S WORD Have you ever thought about something you wanted or needed, and suddenly that need was supplied even before you had time to stop and pray? God knows your needs before you even speak them. He wants to provide for you and answer the very desires of your heart. Don’t ever think God is too busy to answer you. Don’t ever think your needs are too small or that you don’t matter. The truth is that He cares about everything that concerns you, and He loves to hear you call upon His name! When you put Him first in everything you do, when you faithfully follow His commands, He’ll pour out an extra portion of His goodness and favor upon you! Remember, you are very special to God, and He hears you and answers you. It may not be in your timing or in the way you expected, but know that He always has your best interest at heart. He is working things out for your good, and He will always answer — sometimes before you even call! A PRAYER FOR TODAY Father in heaven, thank You for Your faithfulness in my life. I trust that You hear me and that You will answer me. Show me Your ways and teach me to trust in You as I surrender to You every area of life. In Jesus’ Name....

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God Is Stronger Than We Think

God Is Stronger Than We Think

I can do everything through him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:13 (NIV) We’re not as strong as we think we are, but God is stronger than we think. You become strong through God’s strength. His strength enters your life, delivered by the Holy Spirit—Jesus within—and the more dependent you are on God, the stronger in him you become. In our weakness, he is strong (2 Corinthians 12:10). “I can do everything . . .” doesn’t mean, ‘Now that I’m a believer, I’m strong enough to do everything and anything for God.” Your own testimony can attest to the fears and failures related to such thinking. The strength of “I can do everything . . .” comes through God, who gives you the strength you need for each day. Your ability to “do everything” is wholly dependent upon him because your strength is dependent upon him. It’s not a strength you work up to by pumping iron with emotional or mental barbells. Strength comes from submission. The thing you do that may require the greatest strength is to submit yourself completely to God! But God is “working in you, giving you the desire to obey him and the power to do what pleases him” (Philippians 2:13 NLT). Strength is linked to faith. You believe in faith that God is giving you his strength; and so, in faith you can act in confidence, knowing the strength is there: “But the Lord stood at my side and gave me strength” (2 Timothy 4:17...

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Don’t Be Distracted From Your Purpose

Don’t Be Distracted From Your Purpose

Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. James 1:22 (NIV) Living this decade for the glory of God will require a change in your priorities, your schedule, your relationships, and everything else. It will sometimes mean choosing a difficult path instead of the easy one. Steve Adams, our pastor to children at Saddleback Church, says when we are moving forward in the direction God tells us, “Action requires traction, but the enemy brings distraction.” In other words, we can’t just say we believe in God’s plan, or say we need to take some steps. God requires that we take real steps to move us forward. But the enemy, as Steve notes, rushes in with distractions designed to pull us away from God’s plan. We become like the man described by James in the Bible, who looks into a mirror, but then forgets what he looks like as he walks away. Distractions such as bad attitudes, excuses, procrastination, and busyness make us mere ‘listeners’ of the word when God calls us to be ‘doers.’ We face a choice with every step we take into this decade of destiny: Will we fulfill God’s purpose, or will we shrink back and live a comfortable, self-centered life? Will we live for our own goals, comfort, and pleasure, or will we live the rest of our lives for God’s glory, knowing that he has promised eternal...

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How to Recognize God’s Voice – The Seventh Test

How to Recognize God’s Voice – The Seventh Test

“[God’s] peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7 (NIV)   The final test in recognizing God’s voice is to ask yourself, “Do I sense God’s peace about it?” If you think you’ve heard from God, it measures up to God’s Word, you’ve gotten advice from other people and passed the other tests, but you still feel confused or anxious, then it doesn’t pass the seventh test. Why? “God is not the author of confusion” (1 Corinthians 14:33 NIV). So you wait and remain patient until you sense God’s peace. God is a perfect father. Parents don’t want their kids to feel worried or pressured when they ask them to do something. No, they want their children to feel encouraged. That’s the same way God wants to relate to you. He doesn’t want you to feel anxiety in anything he asks you to do. The only time a sense of pressure is legitimate is when you keep saying no to God. That is a relational pressure that comes from holding God at arm’s length. Satan wants to drive us compulsively in the things we do, but God doesn’t work that way. God wants to draw us compassionately. He’s the shepherd who wants to lead the sheep. He doesn’t drive us; he guides us. And, as sheep, we need to listen for his voice. Philippians 4:6-7 describes the attitude you should have when you listen to God’s voice. “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus” (NLT). It’s not just a matter of hearing God’s voice; it’s also a matter or responding. Hearing is not enough. You have to act as well. The Bible says that God speaks to people who do three things. “Listen to this wise advice; follow it closely, for it will do you good, and you can pass it on to others” (Proverbs 22:17 LB). God speaks to those who listen to what he says, follow it closely, and then pass it on to...

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