Vintage message from August 8, 1999.
We need to understand, there are people in our lives, and especially…if we are godly men and women, if we are going to live to honor God with our lives, that there are people around us who will try to manipulate us; people who will try to get us to do their desires and their will… And I have to ask the question: who is it in my life…who may not want the things of God, that would come in and manipulate me, to try to get the circumstance so that it favors them? In everything that we do, if we are called to serve, if we are called to live for [God], if we are called to love God, we need to be on our toes and on our knees all the time, praying that we know God’s will so that when those that come in and surround us — and sometimes they’re good people, sometimes they’re our family, they’re the people who are closest to us — they will come and try to manipulate to their favor, outside of God’s will, outside of the plan that God has laid…
Understand that when the enemy wants to get our attention, what is it that he attacks? Our possessions. He begins to strip away from us the things that are valuable to us, to get our attention. Then we begin to whine and cry and scream and holler because we’ve lost something, rather than looking up to God and saying, “God, You gave it to me in the first place. If I need it, You’ll just give it back…”
We oftentimes respond out of emotion rather than out of prayer. We respond out of our desire to do something, to be something, or to go somewhere. This is natural to our flesh: to manipulate… God wants to overcome that. And those of us who are being manipulated, we do not have to be manipulated because we have prayer that we can always resort to. If we’re in prayer, then we’re not making the decision, God is… If we’ve prayed it through and we know what God’s will is, we don’t have to be manipulated. But understand, there will be those around us, even within our own family, who will try to manipulate us for their own position, for their own desires… Overtime we allow someone to get away with a manipulation outside of God’s will, if we’re not making the decision based solely on what God’s asked us to do, we have given in to that portion of someone’s flesh that will cause them to walk a little further away from God.
Pastor Dave Elkins