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Do you know that God has high hopes and expectations for you? He does. The fact that He invested the life of His only Son to see you set free shows how precious you are to Him. God believes in you more than you do yourself!
I used to think that God was disappointed in me when I made mistakes. But God knows every decision we're ever going to make, He loves us anyway, and He knows that He can change us if we'll stay in His Word.
In the early years when we were building our ministry, Dave and I went through a lot of difficult tests. I needed to work on my attitude. We needed to work on our marriage and how we handled money.
For six years I bought my socks and underwear at garage sales. We were totally broke—and I was teaching prosperity!
Not only that, it just wasn't popular for women to preach back then. We lost friends and had family members who didn't want anything to do with us.
It was just hard and sometimes I wanted to quit. But today I am so glad that I stuck with God because there are people all over the world who have been helped because of our ministry.
Scripture tells us in Matthew 19:29 that anyone and everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands for My name's sake will receive many [even a hundred] times more and will inherit eternal life.
I know it's true because that's what I'm experiencing in my own life right now. If we decide to trust God's Word and never give up, we will have victory.
Our attitude has a lot to do with how God works in our life.
God doesn't reward a negative attitude or self-pity or an "everybody owes me" attitude. Nor does He work through laziness or passivity. God works through faith, but we need to have faith before we can even have hope.
Hope is really a positive attitude. It's expecting that something good is going to happen in your life. God wants us to be prisoners of hope. In other words, He wants you to believe He can change whatever needs to be changed and that you can do whatever needs to be done.
The Bible teaches over and over again that we're to help hurting people. I believe that's God's passion. He wants us to enjoy our lives and He wants us to have nice things, but He also wants us to remember the poor, the lost and the needy.
Sometimes we don't realize that one person can really make a difference. We can inspire the people around us just by making right choices. And we can change the world through our prayers, our giving, and by reaching out with the love of God to those who are in desperate need.
You and I can fulfill God's vision for our lives by living with expectant hope and being passionate for the things that He is passionate about in life.