Apples of Gold
Radio Script for March 25, 2011
“Make Your Decisions at the Altar”
Hello, I’m Doug Apple…with Apples of Gold.
Listen to this little piece of advice and see what you think.
Here it is. Make your decisions at the altar.
What I mean is, make your decisions while praying and submitting yourself to God.
Offer yourself up to God as a living sacrifice, as it says in Romans 12:1.
Wherever we offer ourselves up to God, that place becomes an altar.
An altar is a place of sacrifice, a sacred place where offerings are made to the Lord.
Many church buildings have a place they call the altar. People are invited to come to the altar to pray. Of course you can sit in your seat and pray, or out in the parking lot for that matter, but the important thing is that you seriously offer yourself up to God, and I’ve found that the altar at church is a great place for that.
Just a few days ago I accepted the invitation myself to come to the altar and spend time drawing near to God in prayer. I got down on my knees, bowed my head in humility, opened my hands up before God and prayed. I surrendered myself to Him once again, offering myself as an offering.
So what does that have to do with making decisions?
Well I think we should submit our decisions to the Lord.
First Corinthians 6 says that, as Christians, we are not our own, but we were bought at a price. Our body is now the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in us, so we are to glorify God in our body and in our spirit, because we actually belong to God.
Think of your job. You are probably under someone’s authority. Some decisions you can make on your own, but big decisions have to go through your manager, right?
How much more should our decisions go through God?
That’s why I’m saying this today. Make your decisions at the altar.
Recently I talked to Dr. Charles Stanley about his new book on prayer. One thing he recommended is having a place in your house that is set aside for prayer. He said to make it a sanctified place, in a sense, a place that is designed especially for drawing near to God.
I remember hearing the testimony of a businessman named Kim Stone. He said that God told him out of the blue one day to set up an altar in his home. He thought it was odd, but he did it, and that place became a great place of communion between himself and the Lord.
Listen to this story of submission in prayer. One man offered up prayers and supplications, with fervent cries and tears, and he was heard because of his reverent submission.
Did you hear that? He was heard because of his reverent submission.
That story is about Jesus, found in Hebrews 5:7.
We also need to offer up prayers and supplications in reverent submission. We need to reverently submit ourselves and our decisions to our heavenly Father.
Have you ever been unclear about your future direction? Have you ever not known what decision to make?
Make that decision at the altar.
I’ve heard women say things like, “I just make bad decisions about men.” Well I submit to you, dear lady, that you should start making those decisions at the altar.
We should make personal decisions at the altar, and business decisions at the altar. We are His and not our own. He is the Master and we are the servants. All decisions fall under His authority. With that in mind, we make our decisions prayerfully, in reverent submission, at the altar.
And when we do, amazing things happen. One thing is, we see more clearly at the altar. The Holy Spirit teaches us things and leads us toward wisdom. He opens our eyes and reveals potholes and pitfalls. God knows best, and He reveals things to us at the altar.
We can see farther at the altar. God knows what the future holds. He knows how our decisions today will not only impact tomorrow, but generations. At the altar He gives us glimpses of that. At the altar we can trade short-term, small-vision decisions for long-term, big picture decisions.
Something else happens at the altar. Decisions that are made there are infused with faith. Too many times faith is a missing ingredient in our decisions.
When you are in prayer, and the Holy Spirit stirs within you that sense that you just know what you are supposed to do, then a certain conviction rises up, a certain willpower. You are more determined, more likely to overcome obstacles because you sense that God is with you, that He is both leading you and behind you as you move forward with your decision.
When it comes to making decisions, yes, get wisdom from others. Yes, balance everything with the Bible. Include all those other things that go into good decision making.
Then take it to the Lord in prayer. Cry out to Him in reverent submission.
And make your decisions at the altar.
E-mail me: firstname.lastname@example.org.
May God bless you today! With Apples of Gold…I’m Doug Apple.
© 2011 The Arrow’s Tip
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(Proverbs 25:11 – “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.”)
Why “The Arrow’s Tip”? Each morning, after diligently seeking the Lord, I write Apples of Gold. Then before I release it to the public I pray one final prayer, “Lord, send forth your arrows.” I envision Apples of Gold as arrows, tips dipped in the river of the water of life that flows from the throne of God (Rev. 22:1), sailing toward the hearts and minds of men and women around the world.
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