Saturday, January 23, 2010

An excerpt of "Become a Better You" from Joel Osteen

"The famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright designed many beautiful buildings, homes, and other magnificent structures. Toward the end of his career, a reporter asked him, 'of your many beautiful designs, which one is your favorite?'

Without missing a beat, Frank Lloyd answered,'My next one.'

Frank Lloyd Wright understood the principle of stretching, constantly pressing forward, never being satisfied simply with past successes. The entire world is waiting for your next adventure.

Too many people are living far below their potential. They have many gifts and talents, and so much more going for them. But they've gotten comfortable, settled where they are, and lately become too easily satisfied.

I often hear people making excuses for stagnating in their personal growth:
'I achieved as much as most.'
'Compared to other people, I'm doing pretty well in my career.'
'I've gone as far as my parents did.'

Thats great, but God wants you to go further. He's a progressive God, and He wants every generation to be increasing in happiness, success, and significance. No matter where we are in life, God has more in store. He never wants us to quit growing. We should always be reaching for new heights in our abilities, in our spiritual walk, in our finances, careers, and personal relationships. We all have areas where we can come up higher. We may have achieved a certain level of success, but there are always new challenges, other mountains to climb. There are new dreams and goals that we can pursue.

No doubt, God has already done a lot in your past. He's opened doors for you that nobody else could open. Maybe He's given you a wonderful family and home. Perhaps He's caused you to be promoted, given you favor with your employer or supervisors. That is marvelous and you should thank God for all that He has done for you.

But be careful: Sometimes when you are enjoying life, it is easy to become complacent, to get satisfied, and think 'Yes, God's been good to me. I cant complain. I've achieved my goals; I've reached my limits.' But God never performs His greatest feats in your yesterdays.

He may have done wonders in the past, but you haven't seen anything yet! The best is yet to come. Don't allow your life to become dull. Keep dreaming, hoping, and planning for new projects, experiences, and adventures with God.

I've discovered that God likes to outdo Himself. He wants to show His favor in your life in greater ways today than He did yesterday. He wants you to be more blessed tomorrow than you are today. He intends for you to have a greater impact on the world than you have had. That means if you're a teacher, you haven't taught your best lesson yet. If you're a builder, you haven't built your best home yet. If you're a businessperson, you haven't negotiated your best deal yet. Its time to get your hopes up; enlarge your vision and get ready for the new things that God has on the horizon. Your best days are not behind you. They're in front of you.

But if this is going to happen we have to keep pressing forward stretching ourselves. Get rid of low expectations. Don't make little plans for you life. Don't have little dreams. Don't go around thinking, 'Everybody gets good breaks except me. I've reached my limits. I'll probably never get this promotion. I don't know why I'm not as talented as that other person.'

No, get rid of that defeated mind-set. You are a child of the Most High God. God has breathed His life into you. He planted seeds of greatness in you. You have everything you need to fulfill your God-given destiny. God has already put in the talent, the creativity, the discipline, the wisdom, and the determination. It's all in you. You are full of potential. But you have to do your part and start tapping into it. You have to make better use of the gifts and talents that God has given you.

The Scripture teach that we have a valuable treasure on the inside. You have a gift. You have something to offer that nobody else has. You didn't just show up on planet Earth by accident. You were handpicked by Almighty God. He saw you before you were formed in your mother's womb and placed you here for a reason. You have an assignment. There's something that God wants you to accomplish. Somebody needs your touch. Somebody needs what you have.

Don't live with that treasure undiscovered, and don't die with the treasure still in you. Press forward. Give birth to the dreams and desires that God has placed in your heart.

Neurologists have discovered that the average person uses less than 10 percent of his or her mind. That means more than 90 percent of the mind's capability lies dormant. It never gets tapped into. But if we could just understand what we have: God has deposited a part of Himself in you. When it came time for you to be born, God said, 'Let Me give you some of this gift; some of this talent; some of this creativity.' You have the seed of Almighty God on the inside of you. You were never created to be average. You were never created to reach a certain level and then plateau. You were created to excel. There's no limit to how high you can go in life. There's no limit to what you can accomplish, if you will just learn to shake off complacency and keep stretching into the next level.

But it all starts in our hearts and minds. We have to believe that we have what it takes. We have to believe that we have a gift, a treasure inside. People may have to push you down. Circumstances may have soured your outlook on life.....

God is saying to you today,'Who told you that you don't have what it takes to succeed? Who told you that the best grades you could make in school would be C's rather than A's? Who told you that you are not attractive enough to succeed in your personal relationships or talented enough to flourish in your career? Who told you that your marriage is never going to last?....'Who told you that?'

God says, 'You can do all things through Christ.' The potential is inside you. It doesn't change just because you don't believe it or just because you've been through some negative experiences in the past. It has been deposited in you permanently by the Creator of the Universe. The Scriptures says, 'God's gifts and callings are irrevocable.' ...Those gifts, and the calling on your life, will be with you till the day you leave this earth. But it is up to you to tried decide whether you tap into them and use them or not...."

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