Every Young Man, God's Man: Confident, Courageous, and Completely His (The Every Man Series)

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9781578569830: Every Young Man, God's Man: Confident, Courageous, and Completely His (The Every Man Series)
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Live life the way Jesus did. To the extreme.

You’re probably asking yourself a lot of tough questions these days. Like:
· Why is my faith keeping me from the fun everybody else is having?
· Why do I think about sex so much?
· Why should I obey God when nobody else seems to--even grownups?
· Is doing this okay with God?
· What do I really believe about God?
· How far is too far?
· Why does God expect so much of me?

If you want some solid answers to questions like these, Every Young Man, God’s Man will take you straight to the heart of your frustrations and fears. And give you the truth you need to hold on to–truth that will drive you forward and give you hope.

By learning to go to the dark and difficult places in your heart, and standing up in God’s power in all the battles you face, you will find yourself full of spiritual confidence and courage. You’ll see how faith makes sense in the light of who God is and how much He cares about you. And the bottom line: You’ll discover that it doesn’t get any better than living as God’s man–confident, courageous, and completely His.

Get ready for some gut-punching honesty and real-life stories about how to be God’s man. Right now.

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About the Author:

Stephen Arterburn is the founder and chairman of New Life Ministries and is the host of the nationally syndicated “New Life Live!” daily radio program. He is the founder of the Women of Faith conferences, a nationally known public speaker and best-selling author of over 60 books. He has degrees from Baylor University and The University of North Texas. He resides with his family in Laguna Beach, California.

Kenny Luck is president and founder of Every Man Ministries and coauthor of the best-selling Every Man, God’s Man. He is the Men’s Pastor at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, California.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

the man zone
The summer before my freshman year at UCLA, I came home one time after midnight to a dark house and sleeping parents. While my home was very quiet, my soul churned in chaos. I needed the safety and comfort of my bedroom to relax me. I sat on my bed and ran my right hand through my shoulder-length hair. While I had dismissed many things I ­didn’t like about my life–going to church topped my list–I had one habit too ingrained to let go of: praying before I fell asleep. I guess this was my way to connect with God on my terms. After all, I was the “spir­it­ual” party guy.
Most of the time, however, I would recite the same old prayers I had known my whole life. My lips would be moving, and I ­could hear myself speaking the words, but my heart and my soul were definitely checked out. I found these midnight prayers easy, comfortable, and safe. I’m sure to God I sounded more like a robot than a human being, but in my twisted thinking, I figured God ­wouldn’t call my lack of sincerity on the carpet. Man, was I ever wrong.
That summer evening it was time for my nightly ritual. I got down on my knees at the foot of my bed and looked out at the star-filled Northern Cal­i­fornia sky. I started with the Lord’s Prayer (“Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name...”). Suddenly, I heard a voice inside telling me to stop. I thought, What’s up with this? I started over, but I ­couldn’t get out the memorized words that I had repeated thousands of times before. I ­didn’t know what was happening, but I did know that my skin felt like it was crawling, which humbled and scared me. Instead of “Our Father, who art in heaven” coming out of my mouth, I heard myself whispering, “I want to see You... I want to see You.”
Each time I said this, I felt a deeper and deeper presence filling the air around me. My body shook in response, and tears rolled down my cheeks like rivers. My emotion had been touched by the strong and fragrant presence of God.
For the first time in my life, I expressed to God what I ­really wanted more than anything–a real encounter with Him...just the two of us. I voiced a ­simple prayer–“I want to see You”–not to please my parents, not to impress friends, not to maintain some image, and certainly not to win His approval. What I said that evening was the true confession of a guy on his knees to a God who had been patiently waiting for me to get honest.
Once you ­settle for less than God’s best,
you start spinning your wheels.
He ­didn’t have to be patient since I had been acting like a hypocrite–an immature one at that. He knew I had been deliberately fooling myself, but He also saw someone who was experiencing turmoil regarding who Christ was. When I expressed a longing from deep within my heart–as ­simple as it was–He seized that measly effort to invade my room and bring me closer to Him as never before.
That night was a turning point. God reached out and touched me, and I felt closer to Him as never before. I ­couldn’t rationalize this experience away, I ­couldn’t blame someone else for not living out what I believed, and I ­couldn’t divorce myself from His will at my convenience any longer. Instead of judging me or punishing me, He threw His arms around me and said, “I forgive you. Now go and sin no more.” God “unstuck” me spir­itu­ally as a young man, for which I’m grateful. What happened to me sounds a lot like what happened to ­David, who wrote this in the book of Psalms:

He turned to me and heard my cry.
He lifted me out of the slimy pit,
out of the mud and mire;
he set my feet on a rock
and gave me a firm place to stand. (Psalm 40:1-2)
I had been stuck in the slimy pit of compromise. Once you ­settle for less than God’s best, you start spinning your wheels. You may think you’re gaining traction, but you’re not moving forward as a young man. He’s not going to point His finger at you while you rev your engine in the mud, saying “I told you so.” God is more interested in you moving forward–but first you have to get all four wheels on the pavement.
This book is about you getting some serious traction in your drive ­toward spir­it­ual significance with God. It’s about becoming the young man God created you to be versus what you think you ought to be. This book is about facing the real fears keeping you from being completely His.
Stand Up Now!
Through Every Man Ministries I have connected with thousands of younger spir­it­ual brothers on college campuses and high-school settings for the last several years. What I have found is that you are just like me–battling the urges within and the forces outside to stay true to what you know deep down is right. The tension you feel is real spir­it­ual warfare. All of us are at war against the Enemy of God, and we will have to fight against the dark side within that pulls us ­toward selfishness and away from our faith. Fear not, however, because this is our bond: we have common enemies and simi­lar temptations.
Spiritually speaking, the confidence and courage to stand strong as God’s man now–not later–is the challenge set before you. That means you will need an identity in and connection with God that is strong enough to risk rejection by others as well as delay gratifying yourselves. The biggest lie Satan can whisper in your ear is that you can wait to get serious about God and delay being spir­it­ually responsible. I’ve met too many young ­people with this mañana attitude–that’s Spanish for “tomorrow”–who feel they can get “serious” about their faith somewhere down the road. I even know one of those persons real well because that’s my story.
There is no such thing as
harmless fantasies about women.
Whether you are on the courageous or not-so-courageous side of the faith ­battle, let me encourage you. Every Chris­tian male I know has been there, but what I’ve found is that ­every day you put off taking spir­it­ual responsibility for yourself, the harder it becomes. Believe me, there are a lot of guys in their thirties who learned lessons the hard way because they chose the “wide path leading to destruction” instead of “the narrow road.” They passed up years that ­could have been loaded with God’s blessing.
This book is an effort to help you see around the corner, avoid pitfalls, and experience God’s best without regret or losses. I need to ask for you to put your faith in the ­battle-hardened wisdom of your “olda brotha” who has seen the Enemy do his dirty work, blowing up the lives of brothers your age who thought they knew it all. You’re becoming a man, and that means you have to start thinking like one. Similarly, to become God’s man, you have to think like one of His sons. To help you think like God’s man, you need to think through the following statements that I’ve come up with. I call them “Kenny’s Code.” Read each one slowly, thinking about what each statement means to your heart.
Kenny’s Code
·There is no such thing as “later” with God, only now.
·There is no such thing as being neutral with God–you can go only backward or forward.
·There is no such thing as playing both sides.
·There is no such thing as great results without sacrifices.
·There is no such thing as lies without consequences.
·There is no such thing as mixing God’s values with others that are more popular.
·There is no such thing as being good on your own.
·There is no such thing as a real God without a real devil.
·There is no such thing as “I know better” when there’s God.
·There is no such thing as harmless fantasies about women.
·There is no such thing as a disconnected and productive
Chris­tian.
·There is no such thing as a good “secret” that contradicts God’s Word.
·There is no such thing as a good conscience without the Holy Spirit.
·There is no such thing as a relationship with God without ­communication.
·There is no such thing as growth without testing.
·There is no such thing as freedom without responsibility.
·There is no such thing as getting hurt by others and not needing to heal.
·There is no such thing as risking more for God and getting less back.
·There is no such thing as a bloody Savior and a lazy believer.
These are the bottom lines of this book. I wish these were my thoughts, but they are not. They are God’s. They are His code for His followers. They are truth. They are unchangeable. They are a source of blessing or, if ignored, a source of judgment. They will save you a ton of pain and may even save your life–if you accept them in your heart now.
These bottom lines ­could have saved me a ton of pain. At one time, I was stupid enough to believe that I ­could play Chris­tian and also play cool with the party and girl scene at school. I’ll never forget one hottie telling me, “You are like the perfect blend of religious and cool.”
There is no such thing as
a bloody Savior and a lazy believer.
I thought to myself, Wow–what a great witness. Ha! What a joke I was. One night I would hang out with my Chris­tian friends at a Bible study, and the next night I would be laughing my head off at a huge beer bash with the “stoners.” It’s a good thing that I had friend...

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