Greg Laurie: I Don’t Want to Be Under the Power of Anyone but Jesus

by | Jan 17, 2020 | Purpose & Identity

A lot of people believe in making New Year’s resolutions, but personally, I believe in resolution. Every one of us should have resolution in our lives, because true resolve can’t be broken.

We need a goal; we need an objective; we need something to aspire to. Here are the words of the apostle Paul after years of walking with God:

“I do not consider myself to have ‘arrived,’ spiritually, nor do I consider myself already perfect. But I keep going on, grasping ever more firmly that purpose for which Christ grasped me. My brothers, I do not consider myself to have fully grasped it even now. But I do concentrate on this: I leave the past behind and with hands outstretched to whatever lies ahead I go straight for the goal—my reward the honor of being called by God in Christ” (Phil. 3:12–14, PHILLIPS).

When I was 21, I thought I had come so far. And in many ways, I had, because it was only a few years before that I was living in complete darkness, without God in my life, without any knowledge of the Bible.

But now I realize I have so far to go. I realize I have a lot to change.

The Good Dissatisfaction

“I do not consider myself to have ‘arrived,’ spiritually, nor do I consider myself already perfect.” Paul recognized this about himself, and I hope we see this in ourselves as well. I hope we all realize that we are but a work in progress, that we have a long way to go spiritually. If the apostle Paul saw that, then certainly we need to see that, because this truly was a man of God.

Not only did the great apostle realize he had a long way to go, but he also realized that he could not live in the past: “I leave the past behind.” We cannot be controlled by past mistakes or live in past victories.

So if you have blown it in the past year—even if you’ve blown it this year—learn from it. Make changes in your behavior, in your habit patterns and in your choices that would cause you not go to down that road again. Learn from your mistakes.

At the same time, don’t live in past victories. If God did something wonderful in your life this past year, that is glorious. Be thankful for that. But now a new year is before you with many new opportunities.

Daily Vigilance

Press on for what God has for you. That is what Paul was doing: “With hands outstretched to whatever lies ahead I go straight for the goal.” The original language of this verse includes the word agonizo, from which we get our English word “agony.” This reminds us that our lives are a walk of faith. There are challenges, difficulties and obstacles that we will face. As the expression goes, “No pain, no gain.” Paul was straining to move forward.

By the way, these words were not given to a spiritually elite group of Christians. They were not given to pastors or only to those who are called in the ministry. They are given to every follower of Jesus Christ. Every believer is called to press on.

You see, often it is the little things that bring us down—not the outright sins. Sure, we get to those in time. But it is the little things that ultimately lead to the big things. It is the gray areas that ultimately lead us to those black-and-white areas. That is why we have to look at these things carefully and ask ourselves a few questions:

—Does it build me up spiritually?

—Does it bring me under its power?

—Do I have an uneasy conscience about it?

As the apostle Paul wrote to the believers in Corinth, “You say, ‘I am allowed to do anything’—but not everything is good for you. And even though ‘I am allowed to do anything,’ I must not become a slave to anything” (1 Cor. 6:12, NLT).

I don’t want to be under the power of anyone or anything but Jesus Christ. So ask yourself these questions about the things you think you have the freedom to do.

Resolve Keeps You Going

In the life of every Christian, there will come a temptation to compromise, to back off, to not take a stand for what is right, to not say what is true. We are all going to be faced with this temptation in one way, shape or form.

You never will be temptation-proof any more than you will be bulletproof. But at the same time, if you are walking closely with God, sin will not have the impact it had on you before. To what you are going to yield yourself and to whom you are going to yield yourself is your choice.

Crisis does not make character; it exhibits it. Character may be manifested in the great moments, but it is made in the small ones.

Do you have that character? Are you compromising in your life as a Christian? Are you doing what is right, even in the little things? Because if you don’t deal with compromise in the little things, then it will lead to the big things.

That is why it is a good time at the beginning of the new year to have some resolution—not a bunch of silly resolutions that you make and can’t keep, but resolution. Purpose. Direction.

Here’s what I’ve found: The way you turn your head is the way your body will go. In other words, the direction we look determines the path we take.

So, let me ask you: Are you setting your vision on Jesus Christ this year? {eoa}

Greg Laurie is an author, evangelist, pastor and founder of the Harvest churches in California and Hawaii and Harvest Crusades. He is the bestselling author of several books, and his newest book is Johnny Cash: The Redemption of an American Icon.

For the original article, visit harvest.org.

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

Have We Departed From the  Simplicity of Christ?

Have We Departed From the Simplicity of Christ?

Recently I heard a pastor say the following: "When I was pastoring and saw little fruit, I began to call those with potential to reach others for Christ to our home and to mentor them one on one. That's where massive growth happened in the people." Local pastors and...

Take the Fight to the Enemy, Before He Strikes at You

Take the Fight to the Enemy, Before He Strikes at You

Read Time: 3 Minutes 7 Seconds “When the Philistines heard that they had anointed David king over Israel, all the Philistines went up to seek out David; and when David heard of it, he went down to the stronghold,” (2 Sam. 5:17). When David heard that he was under...

Joyce Meyer: Becoming a Prisoner of Hope

Joyce Meyer: Becoming a Prisoner of Hope

Read Time: 3 Minutes 56 Seconds God is good. And He has a good plan for each of our lives. No matter what may be going on right now, God’s plan is unfolding. In the meantime, Romans 12:12 tells us to “be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer,”...

Victimized By Gaslighting? 5 Steps to Finding Freedom

Victimized By Gaslighting? 5 Steps to Finding Freedom

Read Time: 2 minutes 26 seconds The term "gaslighting" has gone viral across social media this year and Merriam-Webster chose it as their word-of-the-year, saying searches for the word spiked 1,740% in 2022 alone. We're breaking down what the Bible has to say about...

RECENT ARTICLES

WATCH: Vlad Savchuck: Life, Health and the Bible

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZdzLoS3wCM During a recent visit to @HungryGeneration, Pastor Vlad Savchuk asked Bill Wiese to comment on his personal experience applying the Word of God to his own...
Miraculous Divine Intervention Birthed by Thanksgiving and Praise

Miraculous Divine Intervention Birthed by Thanksgiving and Praise

Read Time: 4 Minutes 2 Seconds When I first became a believer in 1970, my mother was one of my first “converts," giving her heart to Jesus as soon as I shared with her the beauty, the power and the opportunity of making Jesus the Lord of her life. However, my father...

I’m Going Defcon G on the Enemy

I’m Going Defcon G on the Enemy

Read Time: 1 Minute 32 Seconds The last six years have been the best of times and the worst of times. I’ve seen more death, destruction, disease and devastation than I care to remember. I’ve also seen the hand of God move in extraordinary ways. Indeed, sometimes I...

Prophetic Vision: ‘Now is the Time of Your Healing’

Prophetic Vision: ‘Now is the Time of Your Healing’

Read Time: 3 Minutes 41 Seconds I was remembering a time when my husband and I were praying over friends who had been in a situation for many years that had caused deep trauma to their souls. As we were praying for them, I became aware of an angel standing over them...

5 Ways to Improve Your Emotional and Spiritual Health

5 Ways to Improve Your Emotional and Spiritual Health

Read Time: 4 Minutes 50 Seconds Do you believe the Lord is concerned about your emotional and spiritual health? He is. He wants you to know how to improve your emotional and spiritual health to be resilient in turbulent times. One of the most powerful things you can...

Pin It on Pinterest