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How to Handle Criticism

First Corinthians 4:3-4 says: "I care very little if I am judged by you or by any human court; indeed, I do not even judge myself. My conscience is clear, but that does not make me innocent. It is the Lord who judges me."

This message is a word that is relevant for anybody who has difficulty in handling criticism. Maybe you know what it is to be criticized. Maybe you have had enough. Maybe it was by parents, and others are still doing it even though you have grown up. Maybe you know what it is to live with a nagging sibling or parent who is always putting you down. Maybe it is your husband criticizing you. Maybe somebody at the office. Perhaps somebody at university, in college, maybe a friend. Maybe a Christian with some stature criticized you, and because of who it is, you take it seriously. Whatever the situation, Paul shows us how to handle it.

Many of us just fall apart when somebody criticizes us or sits in judgment on anything we have done. We just cannot handle it. But Paul was not afraid; he was unintimidated. read more

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Stand Out and Speak Up for Jesus

Many Christians lack the courage—or the conviction—to testify to their faith. But the power of the Holy Spirit helps us to speak up.

As I go out into the world, presenting the gospel on television and radio talk shows or exalting Jesus from secular and religious platforms, I am treated with respect—most of the time. But reviews of my engagements are not always as gracious as my live hosts are.

They sometimes describe me as a middle-aged woman parading a worn-out, old-time message that has no relevance in our century—simply because I lift up the cross. read more

Lessons God Teaches Through Motherhood

You probably know what it's like to have to constantly change your agenda and devote your attention to something other than what you planned—especially if you're a mother. Watch as Priscilla Shirer talks about the valuable lessons God has taught her through motherhood.

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Learning to Receive God’s Gifts

Out of the riches of his love flows every spiritual blessing and reward. How do we obtain what he's promised us?

Years ago I gave my young daughter, Amanda, a little jewelry box with a tiny ballerina that danced when the lid was open. I put a small piece of jewelry that she had been requesting for a long time inside the box.

When she opened the gift and saw the jewelry box, she squealed and remarked on every detail. “Oh, Mommy, this is so beautiful! This is the prettiest box I’ve ever seen.” read more

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An Invitation You Can’t Refuse

What will your response be when the Lord calls you? We can learn a lesson from the story of Vashti and Esther.

What will you do when Jesus, your King, calls? As believers, each of us has a call on our lives. Each of us can expect to hear the voice of our Lord inviting us not only to enter His inner court but also to go and bless others in Jesus' name.

What will you do? The lives of Vashti and Esther—two women in Old Testament times who were a lot like us—illustrate the two choices we can make: We can refuse to respond when He invites us to come to Him, or we can answer, "I will." As we look at their stories, let's ask ourselves: When the King calls, will we choose not to respond and justify our decision with excuses, or will we rise to the occasion, obey His command and be the catalyst for great blessing toward others? read more

The Work of Grace

Heretofore, I have written  extensively on the extraordinary depth and breadth of the atonement. What Christ accomplished for us on the cross opened the door for God’s grace to become operative in our lives.

At Calvary, Christ paid the penalty for our past sin and terminated the law as a means of achieving righteousness. He settled Satan’s claims against us, thus delivering us from Satan’s dominion. Christ also put away sin, and in Him our carnal nature was executed.

To understand how this grace operates in our lives, we must examine the difference between law and grace. The apostle Paul gave us a key in 2 Corinthians 3 when he wrote: “Clearly you are an epistle of Christ, ministered by us, written not with ink but by the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of flesh, that is, of the heart. And we have such trust through Christ toward God. read more

Quit Trying to Be Good

Why you should stop trying to change yourself ... and instead accept the gift of conviction.

I used to be a very frustrated Christian, trying to be “good,” trying to have some sense of worthiness and righteousness in my relationship with Christ.

But then I found out the good news: I was put in right standing with God by His grace, because He loves me. I am made the righteousness of God through Christ and not by anything I do myself. However, for me to become all that God created me to be in Christ and really experience His righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, obedience to His will is important. But we can’t be obedient in our own strength. Let me explain ... read more

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Time at the Master's Feet

If you want to be a powerful force for God, make fellowship with Jesus your top priority.

If you were to ask me to name the most important principle of Christian living I've ever learned, I would answer you without hesitation. It is the secret of daily communion with God. That is, without question, the No. 1 priority of the Christian life. It is the key that opens every door.

Yet it is the one thing many Christians can't seem to find time for. read more

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Overcoming the Shame of Abortion

Millions of women around the world suffer from the pain of post-abortion syndrome. But God has the key to setting them free.

From the time I was a little girl, I knew what I wanted to be when I grew up—a wife and a mommy. But my life took a turn that would prevent part of this desire from ever being fulfilled.

As a teenager, I rebelled against God and my family. I ran with a rough crowd, did all sorts of drugs, and married a man who beat and abused me.

I got pregnant for the first time several months before our planned wedding. My "Prince Charming" convinced me I should "get it taken care of" so that the ceremony wouldn't be ruined. Afraid of the embarrassment—but more afraid of losing him—I had an abortion. read more

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Healing the Pain of Childlessness

What do you say to a sister in Christ who can’t get pregnant?

I said something stupid today. Trying to offer a word of wisdom without casting false hope to a woman with a high-risk pregnancy, I made a comment that went over like a lead balloon. Although Maria has two children, she has also lost two babies to the same physical complication currently endangering her unborn child, and she is afraid to bond with the seven-month-old baby in her womb because she knows the baby could die during childbirth.

“I have another friend who lost three babies,” I told her, “and when they learned during one of the pregnancies that their baby wouldn’t make it, they just decided to love that child for whatever time they would have her in the womb.” That couple’s love for their unborn child provided some meaning during their time of grief, but it wasn’t exactly a word of encouragement to Maria, whose legitimate fears have robbed her of any joyful feelings about her pregnancy. read more

Souls, Priceless Souls!

God forever fixed the value of a human soul when He “so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16, KJV). Souls are priceless. They are of more value than all the treasure of earth and sky.

The church where the gospel is preached without an evangelistic appeal, that is, a call for men and women to accept the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Savior and declare themselves on the Lord’s side, is a failure. I realize that the public decision for Christ is a rare teaching in the world today, but in our meetings, everything is subservient to the decision to follow in the footsteps of Christ.

Frequently, we are asked why we do not embrace the more prevalent custom of having people go to a rear room, sign cards and shake hands with the minister, instead of having a public altar call. We are asked to explain why we insist on asking people to stand, come down those long aisles and kneel before the world at the altar rail. read more

Simply Pray

God wants our communication with Him to be unencumbered by rules and legalism.

Do you realize that even directing a thought toward God qualifies as silent prayer? It's true! Whether you have been praying for years, are just learning to pray, have hit a "slump" in your spiritual life or simply want your prayer life to improve, know this: God wants you to learn to pray more effectively, and He wants your prayer life to become more fulfilling.

Short, simple prayers can be mighty beyond description, but this does not take away from the fact that prayer is also a grand mystery. Watchman Nee, a Chinese Christian who wrote many profound books while imprisoned for his faith, wrote: "Prayer is the most wonderful act in the spiritual realm, as well as a most mysterious affair." read more

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Women and Prophetic Ministry

In 1955 a little 4-year-old girl crept up into her mother's lap. "Mama," she said, "I want a baby sister."

The young mother smiled, amused by the child's request. "Sweetheart," she chuckled, "we're not having any more children. You're the last one."

But the 4-year-old was insistent. She just knew Mama was going to have a baby girl. And as it turned out, she was right!

I was that 4-year-old child, and the next year my baby sister, Lucy, was born. That was 57 years ago, and at that time I had no idea that the "knowing" I sensed about Lucy's birth was a "prophetic word." Nor did I realize that my prophesying the birth of my sister was part of the fulfillment of Bible prophecy. read more

How Not to Annoy Your Friends

Have you ever been afraid of coming across as annoying to your non-Christian friends? Watch Lysa TerKeurst talk about a nonbeliever friend she had and how God used her in an encouraging way.

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Receiving the Power of the Spirit

Initimacy with the Holy Spirit will ignite your ministry and change your life forever.

At the start of the 20th century, Wales was known for its music and entertainment, its independent spirit and its rich sports heritage, but something was terribly wrong. The bars flourished while the powerless and passionless churches dried up.

Gambling and greed were beginning to dominate virtually every activity and captivate the nation's middle class. Violent crimes increased so quickly that there were not enough police officers in the entire country to restore order.

According to noted revival historians, as the hunger for personal pleasure began to dominate the culture, Evan Roberts, then a coal miner, would carry his beloved Bible into the mines with him. For 13 months Roberts cried out to heaven in intense prayer and intercession as God birthed a desperate need for revival in his heart. read more

The Holy Spirit in You

Have you settled for only a small part of the Holy Spirit? It's time to acknowledge who He really is and His divine purpose in your life.

Many Christians seem to have the idea that the Holy Spirit is an "it," a manifestation of the power of God or the gift of tongues. But the Holy Spirit is none of these. He is the third Person of the Godhead, a divine Person with a plan for our lives.

And He doesn't come to us haphazardly; He is a Person of purpose. God has an eternal plan and purpose for every individual who accepts Jesus as Lord and Savior. The Holy Spirit is God bringing that purpose to reality as we learn to yield to His will for our lives. read more

The Higher Place of Faith

Every believer holds a deposit of heaven inside. But we must discipline our minds daily to reflect on the nature of Christ and what is most essential to faith in Him.

Roughly speaking, the word "faith" seems to be used by Christians in two senses or on two levels. In the first sense, it means simply belief—accepting or regarding as true the doctrines of Christianity. That is fairly simple.

But what does puzzle people—at least it used to puzzle me—is the fact that Christians regard faith in this sense as a virtue. I used to ask how on earth it can be a virtue—what is there moral or immoral about believing or not believing a set of statements? Obviously, I used to say, a sane man or woman accepts or rejects any statement, not because he or she wants to or doesn't want to, but because the evidence seems good or bad. read more

Supernatural Favor

When I first began my ministry, I was scared. In those days, women were not as widely accepted in the pulpit as they are today. Afraid of being rejected, I bent over backward to behave in the way I thought would please people. The only problem was that I was trying to earn approval, and it didn't work.

At the time, I knew nothing about supernatural favor. I didn't realize that favor is a part of grace. In fact, in the New Testament the words grace and favor both are translated from the Greek word charis.

The grace of God is the favor of God. And the grace of God causes good things to happen in our lives through the channel of faith. It is not by human power or might but through God's Spirit of grace that we find favor with God and man. read more

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Learning to Love Him

What does it take to love God with your whole heart, soul, mind and strength as the Scriptures command?

Among our friends in ministry is one who literally died, appeared before Jesus in heaven and was sent back to Earth to complete his service to our Lord. Now he touches untold thousands for Christ.

In relating his death experience, he says that he found himself in heaven in a line of people who were standing on a moving path. One by one, each person in the line appeared before Jesus. All those on the path were dressed in white and were exceedingly happy. read more

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