Straight Talk, by Joyce Meyer

Do you take your relationship with God serious?

If you’ve listened to my teaching much at all, you probably know I had a rough childhood. In fact, I didn’t really have one. 

I was seriously abused throughout my childhood. My life was horrible! I don’t remember ever being really happy until I was in my 20s. My mind was a mess; my emotions were a mess; I didn’t know how to maintain a decent relationship; I had all kinds of fears; I developed phony personalities to protect myself; I was lonely, in debt, miserable, depressed, discouraged and physically sick. For many years I had a big mess in my life.

But I didn’t stay in my mess. God has dealt with me, changed me and brought me through it all. Now I have a great relationship with God, real peace and joy, good relationships with family and friends, and I’m doing what God has called me to do. 

If you have a mess—big or small—He’ll do the same thing for you if you’ll just get serious. When I say “get serious,” I mean getting serious about your relationship with God. 

See, God has a plan for your life; but the devil has a plan for you too. The Bible in 1 Peter 5:8 says the devil “roams around like a lion roaring ... seeking someone to seize upon and devour” (AMP). This verse also says we need to “be well balanced (temperate, sober of mind), be vigilant and cautious at all God Can Clean Up Any Messtimes.”

Temperate means “disciplined,” sober of mind means “serious,” vigilant means “determined” and cautious means “careful.” We are to live like this “at all times.” That’s serious.

Hebrews 11:6 tells us that God rewards those who diligently seek Him. I’ve discovered that anything I sacrificed to get closer to God and obey Him I received back from Him many times over what I gave. And what He gave me was always much better.

You may think: You don’t know what I’m dealing with. It’s hard! 

I understand—I’ve been through some really hard stuff. But God never tells us to do anything without giving us the strength and ability to do it. So whatever He tells you to do, don’t put it off. You can conquer anything if you’re serious about overcoming it.

I’ll share a couple examples. When my husband, Dave, and I decided years ago to get out of debt, we had to cut up our credit cards because at the time we didn’t have the discipline not to use them. Now I can use a credit card because I’ve learned to be well-balanced and only charge what I can pay off each month. 

I also remember a time when I had to give up coffee. This was hard because I really enjoy coffee. But I was drinking too much of it, and it was making me sick. Now I can drink it in moderation. 

Sometimes people see what’s wrong in their lives, but they struggle to do anything because it’s overwhelming. I want to encourage you to take one thing at a time and get serious about it. Whatever the issue is, take time to be alone with God, praying and reading the Bible and focusing on verses that address the problem. Take notes about what you’re reading so you can really get the Word in your heart. Stick with it until you get victory. 

Remember, whenever God deals with you about something that’s wrong, He’s doing it because He loves you. The best thing He can do is show us what’s wrong so we won’t live with it and be hindered in our relationship with Him because of it.

God’s plan is for us to be more than conquerors in Christ. We don’t have to live with a mess. The truth is, you don’t have to have a great start to have a great finish. You can decide right now to do what you need to do. Get serious with God, and little by little He will help you and make miracles out of your messes.  

Joyce Meyer is the author of more than 80 books, including her most recent, Power Thoughts: 12 Strategies to Win the Battle of the Mind. She is also the host of the Enjoying Everyday Life radio and TV programs. For more information, visit

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