Straight Talk, by Joyce Meyer

Develop Your Potential

The development of personal potential should be the No. 1 job of every Christian.
It's amazing how many gifted people there are who just sit on the sidelines of life and do nothing. You may be one of them. I can tell you that whether God uses you or not depends on much more than just the gift or talent He has given you. It has everything to do with character--with maturity, the fruit of the Spirit, how we behave and our heart attitude.

God is looking for Christians who are willing to be used as leaders. I believe the people He uses are not always the most talented but those who have the best attitude--a right heart toward Him.

Some people who want to reach their potential don't know where to begin. Others know where to begin but don't know how to move from there to the place where they are supposed to finish. If you fit in either of these categories, you can learn how to reach your goals and fulfill God's good plan for your life.

A leader is not necessarily someone who has a large ministry or is in a position that influences thousands of people's lives. A leader is someone who is on top of things in his or her realm of influence.

Through the years, God has guided me from my impatient beginnings in my first realm of influence--that of ministering to a few people in our home Bible study--to the much larger realm of ministering to thousands of people through our Joyce Meyer Ministries conferences and ministry outreaches.

My husband, Dave, and I are doing what we are called to do. And in developing the gifts God has given us, we are fulfilling our potential. I don't believe this is something God has in store for just a handful of people. I believe it is His will for all people to fulfill their potential.

The development of personal potential should be each Christian's No. 1 job. We all have potential, but we will never see it manifested until we believe God and believe that we can do whatever He says we can do. And He says, "All things are possible with God" (Mark 10:27, The Amplified Bible).

Even if nobody else in the world believes in you, God does. With that confidence, you can do whatever He wants you to do.

Noah Webster's 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language defines "potential" as "existing in possibility, not in act." This means that our potential is only a possibility until we do something with it.

Potential cannot manifest without form. Like concrete, it must have something to be poured into, something to give it shape and make it useful.

What is the form into which potential is poured? Decisions. To develop potential properly, we must have a plan and pray over that plan; we must have a purpose; and we must be doing something.

I believe that many people are unhappy because they aren't doing anything to develop their potential. If you want to see your potential developed to its fullest, don't wait until everything is perfect. Do something now. Start laying your hand to whatever is in front of you.

You cannot start at the finish line. You must start at the starting block like everyone else. Many people want to start at A, blink their eyes twice and be at Z, but it doesn't work that way.

You must give your potential some form by doing something with it. You will never find what you are capable of doing if you never try anything.

Don't be so afraid of failing that you never take a chance. Don't stay in the safety zone, doing nothing, thinking that as long as you do nothing you are safe.

You may be safe, but you will never succeed at developing your full potential or feeling fulfilled in what you are doing. Step out into what you feel God is leading you to do, and you will soon discover what you can and cannot do.

You are full of God-given potential, and He wants to do more with your life than you could ever imagine--but it requires your cooperation. I encourage you to make the decision to develop your potential to its fullest in your realm of influence. As you do, you will lead others in developing theirs.

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