The Obedience Test

When I read about how Saul failed miserably at the Obedience Test, it makes me take notice of my life.  Even though Saul was king, he was not above obedience.   No matter where you are in life, obedience is the key to pleasing God.   As you read on day #13, I hope you choose obedience with every choice.

To watch Scott Wilson’s perspective on The Obedience Test, click here.

The “Thin Skin” Test

Last Sunday I preached on not getting trapped by “offenses.”   Today’s reading (Day #12) is the “Thin Skin Test.”   For some of us, being thick skinned is very hard.  In fact, when I walk closely with the Holy Spirit, I have found myself more sensitive to people opinions and actions also.   I am learning to live out an important paradox:  “I need to be thick skinned, and tender hearted.”   This is a challenge!   However, experience, wisdom and perspective will help all of us achieve these two contradictory qualities at the same time.

To watch Scott Wilson’s comments on “The Thin Skin” test, click here

The Image Management Test

“Label and expectations can get us off track (p. 86).”    When we live only for the eyes of others, we can forget how to be authentic.   God wants us to be true to who He made us, and true to His active leadership.  This means admitting to mistakes and sin when we fall in those traps.  Eli was more concerned about his son’s reputation, so he ignored their obvious sin.  In the end it cost both Eli and his sons more than they could have ever imagined.   When your test comes, choose God’s standards over your image management.

To watch Scott Wilson’s thoughts on Day #11 click here.

The Submission Test

If Samson would’ve been more submissive to the Lord, what could he have done for the Kingdom of God?   “God gave Samson great strength, but too often, he used it for selfish purposes: for sex, to intimidate, to marry a foreign woman (or two), and to get revenge at every turn (p. 79).”   We all have some form of power from God that is meant for His purposes.   If we don’t continually submit this to him, we will misuse this power in the same way Samson did.

On Day #10, watch Scott Wilson’s video blog on the “Submission Test” here

The Battle Test

I was really amazed  to read the story of Jackson Senyoga in Uganda (p.72-73).  It really did feel like a modern day Bible story!    What a reminder of the epic spiritual battles that happen that we never hear about.  Someday in heaven we will celebrate together all of God’s victories!   Doesn’t that make the battle worth it?   In today’s reading on Day #9, “The Battle Test” reminds us that the fight we are in the middle of is real.   I hope we are all like Joshua and Caleb – realistic, but warriors.   Let’s expect to win our battle, no matter what the challenge.

Hear Scott Wilson’s audio blog by clicking here.

The Surrender Test

Today I preached on Moses with a different twist than The Next Level book.   However, Day #8 of the book looks at a crucial challenge for us all – “The Surrender Test.”   Moses had to spend 40 years in the wilderness before his heart was ready to surrender to the Lord.  What will it take for you to be ready?

To watch Scott Wilson’s video blog on Day #8, click here.

The Readiness Test

I don’t really like this quote from Scott Wilson: “One of the lessons we learn from the life of Joseph is that God never promised to protect us from harm.”    I may not like this quote, but I know its true and I know I needed to read this.   In Day #7 of The Next Level, Scott summarizes the lengthy story of Joseph into an exciting, action-packed summary called “The Readiness Test”.   Joseph’s story reminds us that waiting on God is always worth it!   I loved the “baby elephant” illustration on p. 63.   Make sure to read that story if you missed it, because if its true for Scott’s life, it’s could be true for you and me too!   The biggest visions often take the longest to get us “ready.”

To watch Scott Wilson’s audio blog on this test, click here.

The Honesty Test

There are some people who just get comfortable with being “shady.”   Whether it is bad business dealings, broken promises or perpetual exaggerations, deception can become a part of who we are.  Whenever I read about Jacob, I am reminded of people I have met through the years that are perpetually deceptive.   The “Honesty Test” on Day #6 of The Next Level is a sober reminder that our deceptive ways will eventually catch up with us.

Watch Scott Wilson’s audio blog on the “Honesty Test” by clicking here

The Family Legacy Test

We probably have no idea how much our family upbringing effects us.  Still, we are not victims of our upbringing.   We can overcome negative traits that have been passed down to us from our family heritage.

On Day #5 of The Next Level we read about “The Family Legacy Test.”   In most cases, your family has both positive and negative traits that have been passed down to you.  I love Scott’s question on p. 49: “Will we follow the honorable patterns our parents have set in front of us, and will we have the courage to change the ones that are harmful and destructive?”   That is a question all of us must answer with our daily choices.

To hear Scott Wilson’s thoughts on his audio blog, click here

The Pure Heart Test

The thing we want most from God has the potential of  becoming too precious to us (p.44).”   Abraham was tested when God told him to sacrifice his miracle son Isaac.   Why would God provide a miracle, than ask us to destroy it?   God has to mean more to us than our miracle.   Today is day #4 of The Next Level, and we are reading about “The Pure Heart Test” that Abraham went through.

A little over two years ago I was part of a miracle when God propelled my ministry forward by years through a church merge.   In one week, I was leading a church double in size and with an essentially brand new facility.   This was an unlikely occurrence that can only be credited to God.

Even though this was an incredible miracle, I can’t hold this congregation or facility tightly in my grasp.  It is God’s church, and these are His people.  On a regular basis I will tell God (but remind myself), “This is Yours . . . The church, the building, the people.”   Keeping a pure heart is a continual process.   I pray both you and I pass every test so our hearts remain pure.

To hear more from Scott Wilson’s video blog, click here