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For generations, people all over the world have been touched by the godly insights of Oswald Chambers. Now Everything Counts presents his work in a new and fresh form especially designed to speak to today’s generation. Writer Steve Case has distilled and expanded the truth, wisdom, and spiritual insight so that a new generation will be moved by these soul-stirring revelations. The new format builds upon the verses for each day. It excerpts the essence of Chambers’ memorable reflections and summarizes them in the section called “Just Between God and You.” Then it encourages students to process these spiritual truths and apply them in their lives.
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Steven L. Case has been in youth ministry for more than 20 years. The author of several books, inlcuding The Book of Uncommon Prayer 1 & 2, Steve works at the United Church of Christ, in Windermere, Florida. He lives near Orlando with his wife, Becky.Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:
Everything Counts: Oswald Chambers' Classic: My Utmost for His Highest Adapted for Students Copyright 2003 by Youth Specialties Youth Specialties Books, 300 South Pierce Street, El Cajon, CA 92020, are published by Zondervan, 5300 Patterson Avenue SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49530 Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Case, Steve L., 1964- Everything counts : a years worth of devotions on radical living / by Steven L. Case. p. cm. Incorporates excerpts from the writings of Oswald Chambers. Summary: Bible verses and text for each day of the year provide guidance along a faith journey which has, as its goal, absolute and entire devotion of oneself to God. ISBN 0-310-25408-6 1. Christian teenagers--Religious life--Juvenile literature. 2. Christian life--Biblical teaching--Juvenile literature. 3. Devotional calendars--Juvenile literature. [1. Christian life. 2. Devotional calendars.] I. Chambers, Oswald, 1874-1917. II. Title. BV4531.3.C37 2003 248.8'3--dc21 2003005831 Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible: New International Version (North American Edition). Copyright 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All right reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means---electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, or any other---except for brief quotations in printed reviews, without the prior permission of the publisher. Web site addresses listed in this book were current at the time of publication. Please contact Youth Specialties via e-mail (YS@YouthSpecialties.com) to report URLs that are no longer operational and replacement URLs if available. Editorial and art direction by Rick Marschall Edited by Lois Penner Proofreading by Linnea Lagerquist Cover design by Mark Arnold Interior design by Holly Sharp Printed in the United States of America 04 05 06 07 08 09 / DC / 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 This book is dedicated in loving memory of Maynard Case. He was more of a minister than he ever knew. 01.01 what's your point? I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. [Philippians 1:20] IT all starts here. Before you can go any further you have to understand this one main point. Ready? From this point on EVERYTHING COUNTS. Everything you do, do as a servant of God. Everywhere you go, go with God at your side. Every person you meet, greet them as a child of God. You have to be willing to give the whole sha-bang of your being to this journey, or else you're just reading words. Got that? The one thing you have that no one can ever take away from you is you. No one can ever take it---but you can give it away. That's hard. But once you give all that you are to God, you will begin an adventure like nothing you've ever experienced. OZ says: An overweening consideration for ourselves is the thing that keeps us from that decision, though we put it that we are considering others. When we consider what it will cost others if we obey the call of Jesus, we tell God He does not know what our obedience will mean. Keep to the point; He does know. Shut out every other consideration and keep yourself before God for this one thing only---My Utmost for His Highest. I am determined to be absolutely and entirely for Him and for Him alone. JUST BETWEEN YOU AND GOD When you pray ask God to use all of you---all your talents, all your mind, all your heart. Physically. Emotionally. Mentally. Ask God to use all of you so that no part of your mind, body, and soul will go unused. Ask---and then listen. GOD FIRST. GOD LAST. GOD IN ALL THINGS. GOD IN ALL WAYS. CAN YOU HANDLE THAT? OKAY THEN, LET'S GO. 01.02 road trip Abraham...obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. [Hebrews 11:8 ] TOSS the map. It won't do you any good on this journey. Journey? This is more like an adventure. Pack light 'cause you don't know what you'll need. You are venturing out on the 100 percent grace of God. You don't get to know where until you get there. You don't know what you're going to see until you see it. Is that a scary way to travel? For some, yes. For others, it's the only way. On this particular road trip it's essential. OZ says: Each morning you wake it is to be a 'going out,' building in confidence on God...Have you been asking God what He is going to do? He will never tell you. God does not tell you what He is going to do; He reveals to you Who He is. Do you believe in a miracle-working God, and will you go out in surrender to Him until you are not surprised an atom at anything He does? Suppose God is the God you know Him to be when you are nearest to Him---what an impertinence worry is! Let the attitude of the life be a continual going out in dependence upon God, and your life will have an ineffable charm about it, which is a satisfaction to Jesus. You have to learn to go out of convictions, out of creeds, out of experiences, until so far as your faith is concerned, there is nothing between yourself and God. JUST BETWEEN YOU AND GOD When you close this book---say a prayer and give something to God. Start small. Simply hand over one thing that's been on your mind for a while. Give it to God, then stop stressing about it. It's in God's hands. He may not solve it for you right away. He may show you how to solve it on your own. But it's God's now. Let him help you with it. CLOSE YOUR EYES. TAKE YOUR HANDS OFF THE WHEEL . YOU AIN' T IN CHARGE THIS T IME, SPARKY. 01.03 the thunder rolls Clouds and thick darkness surround him... [Psalm 97:2] THESE are more than just words. Jesus was more than just a really nice guy who told nice stories about nice things. There comes a point where the words become real, and then the very real sense of just who this man was settles into our minds. It's like a storm that's out there someplace and we are just beginning to hear the thunder or smell the wind. We come up with all sorts of ways to deal with our understanding of Jesus. We paint pictures and write songs. We create wonderful visuals of Jesus standing with his arm around our shoulder. Jesus as our friend is only the beginning. There's so much more. The sheer awesomeness is a light so bright it could knock us to the ground. (That actually happened to a few people in the Bible.) OZ says: The only possibility of understanding the teaching of Jesus is by the light of the Spirit of God on the inside. If we have never had the experience of taking our commonplace religious shoes off our commonplace religious feet, and getting rid of all the undue familiarity with which we approach God, it is questionable whether we have ever stood in His presence. The people who are flippant and familiar are those who have never yet been introduced to Jesus Christ. After the amazing delight and liberty of realizing what Jesus Christ does, comes the impenetrable darkness of realizing Who He is. JUST BETWEEN YOU AND GOD Offer a prayer. Maybe you can even get on your knees for this one. See him as more than a buddy. He is your only God. Did you create a universe; put the stars in place; dig out the space for the oceans and mold the mountains? When you close this book and pray, remember that you are praying to the one who did all these things. THIS IS DEEPER THAN YOU THINK. THIS IS ALL FAR FROM OVER. YOU MAY BE IN OVER YOUR HEAD. DO YOU WANT TO GET WET?
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