Our first priority in life is to increase in our relationship with God. Our second priority is to our personal self-esteem. It is hard to obtain and to maintain a breakthrough if we do not see ourselves in the light of God’s Word. Our third priority is to prosper in our family relationships. It is vitally important to maintain these priorities if other areas of our lives are to increase.
God wants us to prosper in all things including the material realm. Psalm 1:1-3 reveals how we must view things in order to see barriers removed.
“Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither; and whatever he does shall prosper” (NKJV).
The people we surround ourselves with reveal a great deal about us. Even though God may use us to minister to those who do not know how to live a victorious life, we must have relationships with those who make deposits in our lives. We need the supply of others who will stretch our capacity for increase.
If we embrace the counsel of those who do not have a close relationship with God, we start down a path we really do not want to travel. The influence of those who live in unbelief or strife will have an effect on us.
When we first realized we were called to the ministry, we became youth ministers at a powerful church in Southern California. We knew then we were called to travel like we do today, but we had to be faithful to do what was at hand. One day a well respected man in the church gave Dennis some fatherly advice. He said, “Dennis, we don’t need any more preachers. What God needs is businessmen who will give great sums of money into the work of the kingdom.”
Dennis knew the man was right, we do need many who will give finances into the ministry, but he also knew that God had called him into ministry. The counsel was sincere, but it was sincerely wrong. Ungodly counsel does not necessarily come from ungodly people. This man loved Dennis and wanted him to be as successful as he was. From his point of view, to be a success Dennis needed to do what he had done. But had Dennis taken that counsel, he would have missed the mark. God could not have blessed his efforts because he would have been aiming at second best.
We must embrace the counsel of those who have an intimate relationship with God. Their influence will have an encouraging and uplifting effect on us.