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THE GREATEST CHALLENGE IS THAT KNOWING GOD TAKES TIME AND ATTENTION, AND TO HURRY GOD IS TO FIND FAULT WITH HIM
As we grow in patience toward God, we will also grow in patience with ourselves and others, for we begin to see the plan God has for His people is all-encompassing—spirit, soul and body. And to be critical of the visible path is to be critical of the Way. Though we are patient with ourselves and others, accepting them unconditionally for today, our need to be hearing God for His direction becomes even more critical as we are available to Him to be used to encourage, direct and heal.
We are challenged to be devoted to God alone, looking to Him for encouragement, reward, recognition and motivation.
One way to determine who and what has authority in your life is to identify your source of encouragement and motivation. God knows you need encouragement—look to Him for it; He may use people, but when you recognize it is from the Lord, the impact will be life-giving.
Knowing God is primarily a solitary endeavor rather than a team effort. There is an accusation in some religious circles that people ministering outside an authority structure of denomination or congregational leadership are acting independent of the church, or as “Lone Rangers.” This attempt at manipulation is generally merely an expression of:
1. Control on leadership’s part. If every believer heard from the Lord for themselves, what needs to get done, gets done! The local church would merely be the structure where people would be taught, on average, no longer than 6 months.
2. Immaturity on an individual’s part. If we believe our religious leaders are responsible for our education and growth, we reject God’s sovereignty and abdicate our responsibility to know God for ourselves.
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