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Monday
Feb062017

What’s Keeping You from God’s Best?


While standing outside Wal-Mart, waiting for cars to stop so I could get back to my vehicle, I felt it before I saw it. With the thumping, window-rattling bass coming from the car speakers, it was impossible not to feel the car coming. Loud, profanity-laden music filled the air. Feeling somewhat intimidated and not a little old, I watched the young driver and his equally young passengers roar by and settle in a parking spot.

As a part of the evangelism team at my church, I had just come from an event. Outreach was at the forefront of my mind. But let’s be realistic, I thought. Most believers wouldn’t consider this an opportune time to share their faith in Christ.

And I was certainly one of them.

Some of the usual thoughts flooded my mind: Why would those kids be interested in what you have to say? They’re young and have other things on their minds. Wait for a better opportunity.

Finding an opening in traffic, I made a beeline for my car. Suddenly another thought surfaced: Wait a minute. This is a perfect time to get out of your comfort zone.

Recently I had been making a determined effort to fight fear in my life. I knew of its limiting influence, and I didn’t want to be held back by it. So, I’d made a habit of putting myself in uncomfortable situations—like evangelism outreaches—to fight against those limits. The Word says that we are subject to whatever we fear (Heb. 2:15). So, wherever fear rules in our lives, wherever it’s allowed or tolerated, that fear is calling the shots. It’s establishing boundaries and limitations and keeping us from God-given opportunities and blessings.

While reading Andrew’s new book, Living in God’s Best, I couldn’t help noticing how well his words lined up with my resolve. He says,

“Are you praying for different results? Are you hoping for everything to change, yet you’re afraid to do anything differently? Maybe you love security too much that you won’t take a chance. You’d rather be secure and miserable than make a change. You’d rather stay a slave in Egypt, eating leeks and garlic, than follow God out through the wilderness toward your promised land. Are you on the edge looking in but afraid to enter because it might mean having to fight some giant? Get up and go take your land!”

This was the case with the armies of Israel who faced the Philistine champion Goliath in 1 Samuel 17. Because the soldiers were afraid of Goliath’s size and his taunts, none of them would stand up to him. Because of fear, they were being kept out of the land that God had promised them.

Changing directions mid-parking lot, I approached the suped-up car. The driver immediately turned down his music. All four kids listened as I shared Christ with them. I was a little surprised when I didn’t get any resistance. The “field” was definitely white with harvest. I’m so glad I pushed past the fear because all of them prayed to receive Him as their Savior!

Have you been wondering why your life isn’t exciting? Are you ready to believe for something bigger? As Andrew says, if your life isn’t supernatural, then it’s superficial. It’s time to lift up your eyes and pursue what’s yours. Don’t settle for less—start living in God’s best!

Please leave a comment below if this has blessed you.

Monday
Jan302017

True Intentions

A while back, a friend from church invited me to go to a popular Christian concert with her. I was a busy mom and didn’t go out often, so the idea of spending an evening in downtown Chicago seemed like fun. On the night of the concert, through casual conversation, I discovered that my friend had originally made plans with someone else for this concert. But when that person couldn’t make it, she invited me. However, that was not what my friend told me. She made it sound like I was the one she wanted to go with.

As I got to know her better, I realized that my friend treated other people the same way. She was not always honest about her true intentions. As you can imagine, it made me hesitant to want to be around her. Without realizing it, she was pushing love away from her life.

When I moved to Colorado, I got a phone message from her, telling me she missed me and would love to bring her kids to visit my family and me. Initially the idea of seeing someone from my old church excited me. But because of what had happened between us before, I couldn’t help thinking that perhaps she didn’t really care to see us. Maybe she simply wanted a place to stay near the mountains so she could give her family a nice vacation without spending a lot of money.

It may seem harsh, but I never returned her phone call.

The funny thing is, if she had been more honest with me in the past, we could have developed a true friendship. In a similar way, our intentions affect how we receive from God. Sometimes we limit His best in our lives because our motives aren’t pure.

Andrew’s How to Receive God’s Best teaching explains that our motives are more important than our actions. We can be doing good things but with wrong intentions. When we allow things like pride, selfishness, greed, or fear to motivate us, we’re not walking in love.

Andrew says that we sometimes wait to do what’s right until something negative shows up to motivate us. We’re so used to this negative motivation that we can’t let go of it. Some people do the right thing only because they’re afraid they’ll get caught or punished if they don’t.

Fear of punishment is a wrong motivation, and it brings torment. First John 4:18 says, “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.”

If we have been serving God or people out of fear, we haven’t been made perfect in love. Love will motivate us to do much more. And it doesn’t have negative side effects!

Fix your heart to live in God’s best. Don’t let wrong motives steal God’s blessing from you. Instead, let love be the fire that purifies those motives. Remember, we love Him (and others) because He first loved us (1 John 4:19). When we truly understand that His blessing and His love have no end, we won’t feel like we have to manipulate anyone or anything to make something happen. Learn how to activate the blessing and overcome any wrong thinking that limits you.

Today you can preorder Andrew’s newest book Living in God’s Best: Don’t Settle for Less. This hardcover book releases on February 21, but today is the first day for preorders. You can order directly from Amazon. For more information, call the AWM Helpline: 719-635-1111. Don’t settle for less!

Have you had a similar experience? Are you preordering Andrew’s book? Comment below. We’d love to hear from you!

Monday
Jan232017

A Heart with Room for Him

A long time ago, my mother purchased a portrait of Jesus walking on water. That image has always captivated me. His serene countenance contrasts dramatically with the tempest around Him. It’s an image of the God-man making the supernatural look natural. It’s a portrait of a life that was marked by love, signs, and wonders, a life that brought heaven to earth.

In the Old Testament, after King Nebuchadnezzar came to his senses, he gave praise to God, saying, “I thought it good to declare the signs and wonders that the Most High God has worked for me. [3] How great are His signs, And how mighty His wonders! His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, And His dominion is from generation to generation” (Dan. 4:2-3, New King James Version). King Nebuchadnezzar personally experienced God’s signs
and wonders.

By contrast, in the New Testament, when a group of scribes and Pharisees (the religious leaders of the day) asked Jesus to perform a sign, His answer was an emphatic NO! Why would Jesus answer them this way? Why would He deny anyone a manifestation of His power? Yet we find here that He not only refused to grant their petition, but He also rebuked them, saying, “A wicked and adulterous generation asks for a sign! But none will be given it except the sign of the prophet Jonah” (Matt. 12:39, New International Version).

They asked for a sign but were instead given a wake-up call, alerting them to the wickedness of their own hearts. It’s not our backgrounds or circumstances that bring us close to God; it’s the condition of our hearts. Jesus accused them of being wicked and unfaithful because, in reality, they were not seeking Him with all of their hearts. A wicked heart stands in the way of God’s
mighty wonders.

You and I can think that this doesn’t apply to us. We’re the righteousness of God in Christ, right? However, Andrew’s How to Prepare Your Heart teaching puts things in a different perspective. Andrew says, “A person [who] doesn’t have God in all of their thoughts is a very proud person, a very self-centered person.” It’s the kind of person who is too busy for God. Andrew references the NIV, which says, In his pride the wicked man does not seek him; in all his thoughts there is no room for God” (Ps. 10:4). It implies that this person is too busy with everything else, to the point that there is no room in their life for God. This describes a self-centered person. Andrew goes on to say, “You can’t have two people on the throne of your life. You cannot be sitting on the throne of your life and have God on the throne of your life at the same time.”

Maybe we can’t relate to the word wicked, but in our modern societies, we all can relate to the idea of self-centeredness. Being absorbed with our own agendas can numb us to the point of being unfaithful to God because we’re not giving Him first place in our lives. The result is, we can’t see Him because our hearts are blind. We could be asking Jesus for a sign while not giving our hearts to Him, and then wonder why we don’t receive.

If you have allowed something to take the place of God in your life, you can change that right now. Andrew says the key is humility, and this teaching will show you how to make room in your heart and give God the place that belongs only to Him. Take time to prepare your heart. Preparation time is never wasted time!

For more on this teaching, watch the Gospel Truth television program. How to Prepare Your Heart is airing right now. Or you can order the teaching from our online store or through the
Helpline: 719-635-1111.

Please comment below if you’d like to add to the discussion. We love hearing from you!