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How do you develop the spiritual strength to do the things that please the Father rather than the things that please yourself? First and foremost by spending time in the Word and in prayer.

When the power of God was being displayed through the early apostles in great signs and wonders, that's what they were doing. They were giving themselves "continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word" (Acts 6:4).

Romans 8:5 says it this way: "For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit." That is the matter in a nutshell.

If you want to grow physically and build big muscles, you have to spend time lifting weights and doing physical things to build those muscles. If you want to grow spiritually, you will have to spend time doing spiritual things.

As you spend time fellowshipping with God in His Word, by the power of that Word the Holy Spirit will separate you not only from sin, but also from the unnecessary things of life.

He will impart to you the spiritual might and grace you need to obey the instructions in Ephesians 4:22-24: "Strip yourselves of your former nature-put off and discard your old unrenewed self-which characterized your previous manner of life and becomes corrupt through lusts and desires that spring from delusion; And be constantly renewed in the spirit of your mind-having a fresh mental and spiritual attitude; And put on the new nature (the regenerate self) created in God's image, (Godlike) in true righteousness and holiness" (AMP).

That verse tells us that righteousness and holiness are two different things. Righteousness is the right-standing with God you gained when you were born again. The only thing you did to be made righteous was to make Jesus Christ the Lord of your life.

Holiness, however, is another matter. You are not made holy. Holiness is the result of your choices. It's what you do with your time and your actions. It's your conduct. It comes when you make a decision of your will to live according to the precepts of the Lord.

In short, holiness is doing those things that please the Father.

To be holy is to be "sanctified, and meet for the master's use" (2 Tim. 2:21). Sanctified means "set apart." Set apart from what? From the world! God wants us to be so caught up in spiritual things that we lose interest in carnal activities and pursue Him with all our heart.

He doesn't want us to simply obey a set of rules because it's the "right thing to do." That's law instead of spirit. God wants us to live holy lives because we have a heartfelt desire to please Him.

When we spend time with the Lord, we want to do the things that please Him. Our desire is for spiritual things, not the things of the flesh. It shouldn't be a "head thing" but a "heart thing." Time with Him separates us to Him. He wants us to love Him so much that we want to be wholly dedicated to Him!

And He doesn't want us to consider such holiness as something out of the ordinary. He wants us to take the attitude of the Apostle Paul, who said to the believers at Rome: "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God" (Rom. 12:1-2).

Being wholly dedicated to God is your reasonable service. It's not something above and beyond the call of duty. It's not something that is just expected of preachers and ministers. God expects us all to live holy. He says, "Be ye holy; for I am holy" (1 Peter 1:16).

Certainly such a life will require us to make some sacrifices. It will cause us to suffer in the flesh at times. But it will be worth it. For "the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us" (Rom. 8:18).

When you see the power and glory of God start to flow in greater measure through you, you won't regret you made those sacrifices; you'll be glad!

When you lay hands on a crippled person and see him raised instantly out of a wheelchair, you'll be glad you turned down that carnal movie your friends were going to see. You'll be glad that you gave up those hours of sleep so you could spend extra time in the Word and in prayer.

When you speak in the Name of Jesus to someone in bondage and the devil instantly flees and they go free, you won't be wishing you'd spent more time pleasing yourself; you'll be thanking God you chose to please Him instead.

We Haven't Seen Anything Yet
You may think I'm being overly dramatic, but I'm not. Those things are going to happen - not just at the hands of famous preachers and full-time ministers, but at the hands of everyday believers. We've already started to see it.

But we're just on the edge of what's coming. We haven't seen anything yet!

The prophets of God are telling us that we are about to see the greatest outpouring of God's power this earth has ever known. It's been said that if we were told all that's about to happen, we would not be able to believe it because the magnitude of it is so great.

Glory to God, we are about to see multitudes of Christians put aside the distractions of this age and rise up in the strength of God Himself! We are about to see believers conformed to the image of Jesus! We are about to see the Church God has always dreamed of - a Church holy and without blemish!

Determine in your heart to be a part of it all. Make up your mind that you won't be sidelined by doing petty things that please yourself. Dedicate yourself to live wholly pleasing to the Father and get ready for a life of power!

Excerpt permission granted by
Eagle Mountain International Church, Inc.
aka:  Kenneth Copeland Ministries

Author Biography

Gloria Copeland
Web site: Kenneth Copeland Ministries
For the last 50 years Kenneth and Gloria Copeland have been passionately teaching Christians all over the world how to apply the principles of faith found in God's WORD to their lives.

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