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Being led away from your devotion to God is much easier than you think.
Being led away from your devotion to God is much easier than you think. (Charisma archives)

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The king considered Daniel to be wise. He had an excellent spirit, and people could not find anything in his life for which they could accuse him other than his devotion to God (see Dan. 6:4-5).

Chapter 10 recounts an incident in which Daniel prayed uninterrupted for 21 days. Afterward an angel appeared to him, telling him that he was sent the first day Daniel prayed and that he had fought the prince of Persia the whole time.

Because of Daniel's persistence in prayer, the angel was joined by Michael the archangel. Together they overcame the demonic prince and delivered Daniel's answer (see Dan. 10:1-13).

In prayer, God will speak into our hearts with thoughts or warnings. But prayerlessness will result in creating an opportunity for temptation or weakness (see Matt. 26:41).

Neglecting prayer also will lead to spiritual dullness, which hinders our ability to make good decisions. If we are going to make it in life, we'll need to talk with our Creator and Savior throughout every day.

3. Failing to be rightly related to God and others. God told me that there are many Christians who attend church now who will fall away because they will not become rightly related to God or the body of Christ. Eventually, some will either stop going to church or frequently change churches and never become rooted in a local church.

Right-relatedness toward God means yielding ourselves to Him and placing ourselves under His authority. It's submitting to His Word--the entire counsel of God's Word, not just the parts we like.

More than just fellowship, which can be simply a gathering of people with a common interest, being rightly related to the body of Christ requires submission to one another in the fear of the Lord (see Eph. 5:21). It also necessitates our submitting to local church leadership (see Heb. 13:17).

Every person needs to humble himself and allow the input of others in his life. No one has all the answers, and no one is so self-sufficient that he doesn't need other people around in order to grow in the Lord.

Submission requires humility. God won't humble us; we must humble ourselves. Then we will submit to God's direction, thoughts, corrections and flow of His Spirit (see James 4:6-7).

When you are in submission to God, you can resist the devil's temptations and testings and overcome them as Jesus did (see Matt. 4:1-11).

Another area of right-relatedness involves the home. In Ephesians 5:22-33 Paul says that wives are to submit to their own husbands "as to the Lord" ("as to the Lord" releases you from submitting to anything that is immoral, abusive or against God's principles).

A godly wife will want to love and respect her husband and be a help to him. A husband who truly loves his wife as Christ loves the church will continually lay down his life for his wife. His desires and opinions will become flexible so that he can do what is best for his wife and children.

Ultimately, to be rightly related to God is to walk in His peace and His unconditional love, which serve as the foundation for all our relationships. The God kind of love--agape--will knit people of all denominations and cultures together.

It is a love in spite of, not because of. And it will forge the kind of devotion to one another that God is seeking, compelling us to reach out beyond ourselves to bless and benefit others.

4.Taking in without giving out. I've noticed that when people sit week after week, taking in messages but never giving out, they become spiritually dull, critical and quick to judge others. Typically, they begin acting as though they have enough knowledge and can coast on what they know until they die.

Giving out is more than witnessing or giving our money to God's work. It also entails laying down our lives before Jesus in order to share with others what we have received.

If the body of Christ had only self-centered members who had no sense of responsibility for the people around them, Christianity would never spread to the world but would ultimately die.

Jesus said, "'Freely you have received, freely give'" (Matt. 10:8). By God's grace we have received the gifts of salvation, forgiveness, freedom, healing, restoration and more. It must now be our mission as believers to give out to others the truths we have received so they can escape hell, make heaven and experience all Jesus wants to do in their lives. This is the time to hear the loving voice of God and not shove it aside.

There is an alarm that is sounding to those who will listen. Time is too short to live haphazardly--neglecting study in the Word, personal prayer and intimate fellowship with God and His church. In addition, we must continually reach out to help others see the truth, or we will be left with a form of dead religion without the life of God.

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