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When I was a boy my dad was quite a fisherman. Often he would take me along, and I loved it.

Dad traveled for a living, and I missed him while he was gone. The day he was due home, I could hardly wait. Sometimes when he came in, he would say we were getting up early the next day to go fishing.

The evening before our trip I couldn't sleep. I would get up in the middle of the night, make sure my tackle box was full, and lay out my fishing clothes. Then I would wake up at 4 o'clock the next morning. When Dad came in to get me up, I would already be dressed, with rod, reel and tackle box in my hands. I was ready because we were going fishing. It was wonderful!

Now the same man could come home from his travels, tell me something different and get a totally opposite reaction from me. He could say we were going to get up early the next morning to work in the yard. Strangely enough I wasn't eager at all. Why? Because it was my idea of absolutely nothing to do.

Even today, I feel about it like George Bush does about broccoli - I don't like it. Never have. If left up to me, we would cement the whole yard, paint it green and forget it.

Gloria can go out there and dig and scratch around in that dirt all she wants to. I will buy her all the tools she wants. But as long as I have a choice, I'll leave all that yard work up to her and whoever else she can find to help her.

As for mowing grass, there isn't a lawn mower made that is fine enough to make me want to use it. I have no desire to work in the yard, whatever the enticement. If someone ever invents one that will fly, I might like to try it a time or two just to see what it's like. Other than that, I'm not interested.

When Dad came home from traveling and said we were going to get up early to work in the yard, my response was not the same. I didn't wake up during the night and look for my working clothes. The next morning when Dad came to wake me, I wasn't up and ready, smiling with a hoe in my hand - I was sound asleep. He had to call me at least three times. Even then I had to drag myself out of bed.

What's the difference? Absolutely nothing. My dad was the same man in both instances. I loved him just as much in either case. Whether we were going fishing or digging, I felt exactly the same about him. The only difference was my will. I willed to go fishing; I didn't will to do yard work.

Our will determines whether we act with enthusiasm on the wall. The thermostat has no power to cool a room. It just sends a signal to the air conditioner: "The room temperature has reached the point that some cool air is needed." That alerts the air conditioner to come on until the thermostat says, "Okay, that's enough."

Like that thermostat, our will sends out information - requests and commands. Do you need healing? Your faith won't come on line until the thermostat of your will sends a message: "Healing, please."

It makes no difference what sickness it is, whether it's cancer or a head cold. Your body doesn't know the difference, and your will and faith shouldn't either. There is no law, no demon that can overcome faith. Only you personally control your faith.

On a hot day, if you set the thermostat on HEAT rather than COOL, don't expect pleasing results. Don't make that same mistake with your will and your faith. Don't say, "Fear, please," and expect to get faith's results.

We have done the Lord a terrible injustice by not honoring Him, by not receiving from Him what He wants to do for us, through us and about us. Why have we done Him this injustice? Because of our lack of knowledge, our lack of will.

We did the same thing for a long time with the Holy Spirit: refused to receive Him. We did the same thing then with the gifts of the Spirit: refused to receive them.

What happens when we use our will to honor God? The Father honors us in return. He says to us: "Because you have honored Me, I will honor you. You are acting in honor, so the honorable thing for Me to do is to take care of you. You are obedient to Me, so I will be obedient to you." You draw nigh to God and He will draw nigh to you (James 4:8).

The Lord asked me one time, "Kenneth, will you do anything I ask you to do?"

"Yes, Lord," I answered. "You know I will."

"I know you will," He responded. "But you don't understand that I will do anything you ask Me to do."

I could hardly believe my ears.

"What did You say, Lord?"

"I said that I will do anything you ask Me to do."

Jesus says this in John 16:23: Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you.

I didn't believe that though. I believed I would do anything God asked me to do, but I wasn't really sure He would do anything for me.

There I was - born again, a man of faith and prayer, who was out preaching the gospel - but I had no idea God would do whatever I asked in Jesus' name. I did pray correctly, and I did have prayers answered, but that kind of thought had never entered my mind.

"Kenneth, don't you realize that I am far more committed to you than you are to Me?" asked the Lord. "I loved you before you were ever saved. I loved you even before you were born. I gave My life for you."

That stirred me to the soles of my feet.

Excerpt permission granted by
Eagle Mountain International Church, Inc.
aka:  Kenneth Copeland Ministries

Author Biography

Kenneth Copeland
Web site: Kenneth Copeland Ministries
For the last 50 years Kenneth and Gloria Copeland have been passionately teaching Christians all over the world how to apply the principles of faith found in God’s WORD to their lives.

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