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Spiritual Guidelines For Success!
2/23/2009

Spiritual Guidelines for Success
    
    However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given methe task of testifying to the gospel of Gods grace. Acts 20:24 (NIV)
    
    In the Book of Acts, we see Paul encouraging the elders of Ephesus to hold on to the Word that was preached to them. He told them to keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood. He told them that he knew after he had left them, that savage wolves will come in among you and will not spare the flock. Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth in order to draw away disciples after them (see Acts 20:28-30).
    
    This message holds true for us today, because we face the same temptations as these early Church leaders and followers of Christ faced, and it is because they are from the same enemy Satan. He has perfected his craft of deception to the point of an evil perfection. The devils focus is in breaking down our resolve to study the Word, and to apply its truths to our life. This is the basis with which Paul gave us this warning.
    
    The only way to fight this enemy and his lies is to seek the wisdom of Gods Word, and the strength of His Holy Spirit, which has been given to each person who has accepted Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior. Once we have done this, we can implement some vital guidelines to assure success. Here are a few we must incorporate:
    
    1.Follow the Lord with all your heart and soul. Walk in His ways completely. Were told in Deuteronomy 30:9, 10 that the LORD your God will make you most prosperous in all the work of your hands and in the fruit of your womb, the young of your livestock and the crops of your land. The LORD will again delight in you and make you prosperous, just as he delighted in your fathers, if you obey the LORD your God and keep his commands and decrees that are written in this Book of the Law and turn to the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.
    
    Following the Lord and obeying Him and His commands completely means that we must give Him 100% effort. We can only do this by seeking Him for the power of His Holy spirit. Simply yield your desires, and seek His perfect ways with each and every temptation you face. If we choose anything less, it will only be a matter of time before the enemy is successful in leading us astray.
    
    2.Dont compromise! This is probably the single biggest way to succumb to the evil one and his ways. If we dont stand for what we know to be true, we will fall for almost anything.
    
    You will be attacked, and criticized for your beliefs. You will be disliked, and even ostracized. But this will be the price for living for God. You must understand, God has a perfect plan of your life; plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future (see Jer 29:11). Besides, we already know we have been sanctified (set aside) by the Holy Spirit of God, so why should it bother us to be looked at, as different?
    
    My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. John 17:15-17 (NIV)
    
    Temptation is going to come, so dont be caught off-guard. Read your Word, and know what God has taught us to be right in each situation. In a world that seeks to be unique, we can be different, by not going with the flow of our society and the environmental trends that are simply gratifying the lust of the flesh.
    
    3.Trust God at His Word. Sometimes we can experience the temptation to doubt God and His Word. This is a direct spiritual attack from the enemy. When thoughts such as these pop into your mind, especially when you face trying times, renounce them, and go back to the Word of God for the truth that He has given to all of us who, with faith, believe.
    
    Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths. Proverbs 3:5-6 (NKJV)
    
    4.Fellowship with God continually! When we spend time with God, in His Word, praying with Him, singing to Him, resting in Him, and listening to His voice, we are renewed with His strength and His vision for our lives. We are told in 1 Thessalonians to pray without ceasing. This means that we are to be continually speaking with God, making intercession for others needs, and with a compassionate heart, considering them better than ourselves.
    
    We must continue to move forward in our walk as Christian men and women. Seeking to be transformed by the renewing of our mind, we must continue to grow spiritually. God will guide and empower us to do all that He has called us to do. But it will be only by His power, and not of our own initiative or abilities in which we find success.
    
    STUDY QUESTION: What can we learn and apply to our lives with respect to Pauls commitment in Acts 20:24?
    
    PERSONAL INVENTORY: Are you willing to apply these principles to your life this year?
    
    APPLICATION: With a new commitment comes new resolve and a plan to succeed. Make that resolve and commitment within your heart and ask God to help you to achieve His goals and wishes in your life today.
    
    Father, I want to Thank You for Your empowerment today to be able to make wise decisions and to keep Your Word as the basis for my choices in life.
    
    Be Blessed, Pastor Scott
    
    

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000