- Wed Jun 25, 2014
In the realm where battles of faith rage, a man must seek an equally bold new way of dealing with the forces that would harm his walk with God. Capitulation only delays the inevitable. Real change begins with a new perspective toward spiritual battle. Instead of it being "out there" and for others, we've got to make it a personal spiritual crusade. Specifically, this means destroying the idea that we can be God's man and, simultaneously, accommodate old ways of behavior pattered after the world.
"Don't you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God?" the Bible asks us. We men don't like such black-and-white statements, but God must have put that into the Bible for a good reason. His Word also says, "Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. Or do you think Scripture says without reason that the spirit he caused to live in us envies intensely?" (James 4:4-5).
Yup, there's nothing equivocal about that, which is why we call it absolute truth. It is the truth--not our blending in--that sets us free.
- Tue Jun 24, 2014
When was the last time you heard a fresh word from God, either through prayer's revelation or through the written Word leaping to life before you in the Spirit?
Are you allowing God's Word to have its impact in you? Are you hungry for that encounter, or are you holding back in the rear of the congregation, marking time? Get hungry for God! You must be a man of the Word, and you must change the way you view scripture--an encounter with the Word is an encounter with God.
What's keeping you from kicking it up a notch and becoming a spiritual man of valor? Men of valor run to the smell of battle. "Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome" (Nehemiah 4:14). Seek Him through His Word, and He will transform you completely.
- Mon Jun 23, 2014
Our society doesn't glorify discipline all that much. This means it may take you some time to learn a disciplined lifestyle.
The apostle Paul said we're to be like Olympic athletes, beating our bodies and running so as to win. Most of us haven't disciplined our bodies to that extent, certainly not in the sexual arena. But the truth is clear. We're to crucify the flesh. Part of that process is learning not to put yourself in the same old situations that lead to sin.
Whatever your defense, set your rules and then be disciplined.
Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. (HEBREWS 12:1-3)
- Sun Jun 22, 2014
At its very core, humility is found in men who recognize the gap between us and God. No matter how smart we are, He is smarter—infinitely smarter. No matter how many accomplishments we have to our credit, He created the universe. No matter how forgiving, generous, or loving we can be to others, He possesses all of these qualities in endless measure. Coming face to face with God should lead a man into the only appropriate attitude: humility.
Destruction is certain for those who argue with their Creator. Does a clay pot ever argue with its maker? Does the clay dispute with the one who shapes it, saying, “Stop! You are doing it wrong!” Does the pot exclaim, “How clumsy can you be!”…
This is what the LORD, the Creator and Holy One of Israel, says: “Do you question what I do? Do you give me orders about the work of my hands? I am the one who made the earth and created people to live on it. With my hands I stretched out the heavens. All the millions of stars are at my command.” (ISAIAH 45:9,11-12, NLT)
- Sat Jun 21, 2014
God is in the business of confronting us for our benefit, to heal us from our sinful past. These surgeries of the soul require faith in the Surgeon and His promised outcomes. Those who accept “going under the knife” often make the necessary changes to turn things around in their lives.
While God may confront us, He also extends His hand to calm our fears:
I will lead the blind by ways they have not known,
along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will
turn the darkness into light before them and make
the rough places smooth. These are the things I
will do; I will not forsake them. (ISAIAH 42:16)
God not only understands our fear of change, but He seeks to help us at every turn.