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Too often we limit ourselves by the way we think. We’ve all had those moments when we felt the pull to do something out of the ordinary, but held back because of the fear of what others would say. The Bible tells us there are no limits with God, and we all have the same opportunities to succeed and grow in him. The pull we feel is the prompting of the Holy Spirit, and listening to him helps us break through the barriers that hold others back.
God has different callings and different gifts for each of us, and they all require faith to lay hold of them. To do that, we must change our way of thinking. Our thoughts are powerful, and they can either limit us or remove all obstacles and barriers in our way. In the Old Testament, the only thing that held back the children of Israel from occupying the land God had promised them was their fear and negative thinking (Numbers 13:26-33).
They suffered because they believed they were inferior, and this mindset kept them from receiving the good things God had for them. How many of us think that way? Regardless of who we are or what the circumstances may be, God loves us all equally, and he doesn’t play favorites. “Then Peter opened his mouth and said: ‘In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality’” (Acts 10:34, NKJV).
The apostle Peter was referring to the fact that God blesses men as well as women. God is willing and able to use everyone who believes in what he says, regardless of race, gender, age, social status, economic level, or any other factor the world uses to limit people. This means we must be extra careful what we listen to, because what we hear from others can either build our faith up or tear it down. “And He said to them, be careful what you are hearing. The measure [of thought and study] you give [to the truth you hear] will be the measure [of virtue and knowledge] that comes back to you—and more [besides] will be given to you who hear” (Mark 4:24, AMPC). In other words, we need to filter what we hear and reject any “you can’t do that, because…” messages that come our way.
Letting the world define our parameters causes needless emotional pain, and it’s not God’s will for us. He wants the best for us, and he can bring that about when we listen to him instead of negative naysayers around us. Trying to accomplish anything through our own strength or mental ability can fizzle out when we reach our physical limits. Following God’s lead gives us a supernatural strength. “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13, NKJV).
Jesus came to break down the barriers separating people, level the playing field for everyone, and bring them the truth about God’s love for them. He wants a joyful and fulfilling life for every one of us; to grasp it for ourselves we need the courage to move beyond fear and doubt and go forward in faith. “The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life” (John 10:10, NLT). God is well able to cause us to live out our most cherished dreams.
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