This is perhaps the most practical book I've written. I don't know about you, but there's a little pool that I find myself in sometimes, the water's warm and a bit icky, but splashing about in it can be quite comforting.
It's the pity pool.
It's the place we go when somebody's done done us wrong.
It's the place we hide when our feelings are hurt.
Well, maybe hide isn't the best word for it, it's the place we sit as we shout to the world, "Look at me! Look how hard it is to be me!"
And while the pity pool is not all that bad--it's also not all that good. In fact, it's really a dead end and nobody wants to end up in that mess.
I wrote this book to help you get out of that pool. Taking Responsibility for the Choices We Make is about living this adventure we call life in a way that gives us the power to overcome.
In these pages I tell you exactly HOW you can maneuver yourself up and out of your mess. I...
You can argue with God and win.
In Matthew 7:7 Jesus said, “Ask and it will be given to you, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be opened for you.”
And again in John 15:7 where He assured us that we can “ask whatever you wish and it will be done for you.”
Jesus spoke these things to reassure us that God answers us when we pray and prayer works!
And I’m here to tell you how you can lay hold of these truths, experience their reality in your life and then turn around and say to the skeptics—I KNOW God answers prayer! He’s answered mine!
To argue with God and win, pray this way:
1. Identify what you are asking God to do and clearly state your request.
This might sound like a no-brainer to you, but if you stop and think about it, we sometimes think we’re asking for something when we’re really just beating around the bush!
When Jesus delivered miracles, He...
Shame and conviction have the same roots but different fruits. They are both rooted in sin that led to defeat, and perhaps a dose of humiliation.
Shame has Satan for a gardener.
Conviction has the Holy Spirit.
Shame’s gardener comes to steal, kill and destroy.
Conviction’s Gardner comes to give life more abundant.
If you let shame’s gardener tend to your garden, you will produce the fruit of hatred and self-loathing, despair, regret, impatience, harshness, wishy-washiness, and a life out of control. Your “crop” will spread like wildfire, and consume the plants surrounding it.
If you let conviction’s gardener tend to your garden, you will produce the fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness and faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Your crop will nourish the soil and all your other plants will grow even more beautiful.
The fruit you produce will depend NOT on the root (any ol’ root will do), but on the one you allow to...
I John 5:14-15, “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.
Isaiah 65:24, “Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear.”
Psalm 107:28-30, “Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress. He made the storm be still, and the waves of the sea were hushed. Then they were glad that the waters were quiet, and he brought them to their desired haven.”
Matthew 7:7, “Ask and it will be given to you, seek and you will find; knock and it will be opened to you.”
Matthew 21:22, “And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.”
Mark 11:24, “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”
So, here's the deal. Prayer works, I know this well.
How do I know? I know prayers work when they are answered, for the whole purpose of praying is for God to hear and answer! He tells us this over and over and over again in His Word.
But sometimes God makes us wait. Why is that?
This waiting is hard. Real...hard.
But, this might make your waiting a bit easier. Here are 8 reasons that God makes us wait. I compiled this list from a book I came across (that I highly recommend),The Promising God by Richard Bucher. Here you go:
1. God is moving pieces into place.
You don't necessarily know what pieces are necessary, but God does. When He works all things together for good, He is working "all things" even those things that you don't know about; those things that you've never thought of; those things that He knows because He's God.
2. You're not ready yet.
I know, this isn't good to know. But it's a reason that God might be making you wait. And, you possibly...
If you’re like most people, you’ve uttered a prayer or two.
“Oh God, please!!!! Get me out of this mess!”
Or, “Lord, we desperately need You to…”
And unless you are in the elite group of 16% of pastors who said they were satisfied with their prayer lives, you are most likely DIS-satisfied with the effectiveness of your prayers.
Don’t give in to despair, don’t give up, not just yet.
Just keep reading. I’m about to tell you how you can experience answers to your prayers. I’m going to tell you how you can know that ALL of God’s promises are true, even the most bodacious ones.
Aren’t you ready to experience answered prayers?!
If so, start by praying this:
LORD, I want to learn to pray. I want to experience Your power working in my life. I want to be a witness to Your intimate involvement in the details of my life. I want to be the kind of pray-er...
I remember hearing,
I was being warned that my actions or words were indicative of an attitude of arrogance. Perhaps I was teetering over into the danger zone of thinking too highly of myself.
A natural result of getting "too big for your britches" is choosing to step beyond boundaries in your life.
Boundaries are the people and the powers that "hem us in."
They determine the limits of what is and is not our responsibility and what is and is not within our control. It's our nature to want to step beyond God-ordained boundaries in our lives.
In his book Normal Christianity Watchman Nee explains that when Adam chose to eat the fruit from the tree of good and evil, he expanded his experience on earth to reach beyond the boundaries his loving Father and Creator placed on his life. God created us to have a relationship with Him where we depended on Him for our very life. He created us to be...
So, if prayer gives you unhindered and bold access to the power of God, (Hebrews 10:19-23) and God desires to demonstrate His power and His love on the platform of your life, (Ephesians 3:20) how then do you experience answered prayer?
What I’m about to tell you will radically change your life if you let it.
He does! And better than that…
Think about that. If you are confident that God wants to answer your prayers and you know He will answer your prayers, the answers to your prayer are only a prayer away. In order to explain the secret of prayer, I will use the parable Jesus used to teach his disciples to pray.
The parable of the reluctant friend:
“Then, teaching them more about prayer, he used this illustration: ‘Suppose you went to a friend's house at midnight, wanting to borrow three loaves of bread. You would say to him, 'A friend of mine has just arrived for...
When we were young, our mothers read us Bible stories. Remember the “Bible Hero” books?
I read dozens of them to my children.
Don’t you love the Bible stories? Adam and Eve, Noah and the Ark, Abraham and Sarah, Rahab and the spies, Joshua and the Battle of Jericho, Jacob’s Ladder…the list goes on and on.
But if you asked me to tell you my all time favorite, it would have to be the story of David and Goliath.
I can’t help but wonder what it might have been like to have been a soldier when one giant could held the entire Israelite army captive in fear! But more amazing than that was the faith of a shepherd boy who took the same giant down with a simple slingshot and stone!
But here’s my only problem with children’s Bible “heroes.” Because the stories have been “approved for general audiences” their “G-rated” versions fail to “tell the whole...
In this article you will learn 6 reasons your prayers aren’t working, and how to fix what’s wrong. If your prayers seem to be hindered, most likely you are dealing with one or more of these issues. As you read, you might recognize the issue in your own prayer life. When you do, confess and repent of what you were doing wrong and your prayer life will explode in power.
Why aren’t my prayers working?
Of course there are barriers to prayer. Here are a few that I have identified in my own life.
This is the barrier Jesus mentioned when he taught his disciples to pray.
“For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.” Matthew 6:14-15
Think about the implication of this verse. Jesus said, that if we forgive others, His Father will forgive us. But, if we do not forgive...