Focus on Pleasing God, Not People

Our purpose is to please God, not people. He alone examines the motives of our hearts” (1 Thessalonians 2:4b NLT, second edition). God did not make you to be what somebody else wants you to be. God didn’t make you to be what your parents want you to be, what your girlfriend or boyfriend wants…

How to Overcome Temptation

Without any question – without any question at all, the biggest problem that Christians have is temptation. By far, it’s the biggest problem. If you can eliminate temptation, you can eliminate sin. A pastor once told his congregation, “I learned a great lesson from a dog.” He said, “His master used to put a bit…

Your First Step of Discipleship

God wants us to grow up, to know the whole truth and tell it in love — like Christ in everything” (Ephesians 4:15 MSG). God wants you to grow up: “We are not meant to remain as children” (Ephesians 4:14a Phillips). Your heavenly Father’s goal for you is to mature and develop the characteristics of…

Create a Spiritual Growth Chart

“It’s crucial that we keep a firm grip on what we’ve heard so that we don’t drift off”(Hebrews 2:1 MSG). As you grow to spiritual maturity, you will have to cooperate with God in the process. One way to do that is to believe God is working in your life, even when you don’t feel…

How to Remove and Replace Your Old Habits

“Practice these things. Devote your life to them so that everyone can see your progress” (1 Timothy 4:15). While you were given a brand new nature at the moment of conversion, you still have old habits, patterns, and practices that need to be removed and replaced. Let go of the fears that keep you from…

God Grows Us One Step at a Time

“So get rid of your old self, which made you live as you used to — the old self that was being destroyed by its deceitful desires. Your hearts and minds must be made completely new, and you must put on the new self, which is created in God’s likeness and reveals itself in the…

There Are No Shortcuts to Spiritual Maturity

And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns” (Philippians 1:6 NLT, second edition). It takes years for us to grow to adulthood, and it takes a full season for fruit to mature and ripen.…