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NEXT:


Four Steps to Get Unstuck and

Walk Into Purpose






























Dorenthea Nemeth








Unless otherwise indicated, Scriptures are taken from the King James Version (KJV).

Scripture quotations marked NKJV taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked NIV are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide. www.zondervan.com The “NIV” and “New International Version” are trademarks registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by Biblica, Inc.™

Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, Copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked CEV are from the Contemporary English Version Copyright © 1991, 1992, 1995 by American Bible Society. Used by Permission.

Scripture quotations taken from THE MESSAGE, copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson. Used by permission of NavPress. All rights reserved. Represented by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.


Scripture quotations taken from the New American Standard Bible® (NASB), Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. www.Lockman.org


Unless otherwise indicated, definitions are taken from the Merriam-Webster Dictionary.



I dedicate this book to my awesome and amazing husband, Albert, who God made just for me, to love me when I’m unlovable and to be patient with me when I’m impatient.

Thank you for believing in me more than I believe in myself.

I love you!



Contents





Introduction



Step One:

Leave the Past Behind: He’s Doing A New Thing

1. Run After God, First

2. A New Thing

3. What You Lookin’ At?



Step Two:

Stop & Retreat

4. Stop Majoring in the Minors

5. Stop Trying To Do It Alone

6. Are You Listening?

7. It’s Not All About You



Step Three:

Get In Position

8. Position Yourself

9. Speak To It!

10. There’s Power In Your Praise

11. Your Answer Is In His Presence



Step Four:

Embrace Your NEXT

12. It’s Time To Dream Again

13. Increase Your Value

14. Wise Stewardship

15. Walk Into Your NEXT



Conclusion

Endnotes

Introduction


As common as it may seem, we all fall sometimes. It is God’s desire for us to look to Him for guidance in our decisions, and in every problem we may face. However, we fail—in our humanity—to reach out, displaying our imperfection. We serve a mighty God who knows us better than we know ourselves, and as we yield to Him, He’ll take us by the hand and take us to that place we were supposed to be all along—to our NEXT.

Why do we fear? Why won’t we pray? Is it because of what He’ll tell us, we may not want to hear what He has to say, or do what He asks us to do? As we are obedient to God, He assures us in His word that He’ll never leave or forsake us.

Then, what is it that keeps us from drawing close to Him?

We often walk in a world of “unknowns”, not knowing what tomorrow has in store. God said in Isaiah 55 that His ways are not our ways, neither are His thoughts our thoughts; for as high as the heavens are above the sea, so are His ways higher than our ways, and His thoughts higher than our thoughts. My friend, be encouraged knowing that we serve an all-knowing God. He’s powerful, and nothing that happens in our lives takes Him by surprise.

As we go through life, many question, “God, if you’re here, why is this happening to me? Don’t you care?” And, of course, though we know He cares, it sure does feel like He doesn’t.

Don’t you know that God knows what’s best for you? That He has a plan for you that is so phenomenal, that if you knew what it was, you couldn’t handle it? It’s so big, it would blow your mind! That’s the kind of God we serve. He’s a God of the impossible. There’re nothing that He can’t do. Though it seems that you’re all alone, you’re never alone. What you’re going through right now is a time of pruning; a time of watering; a time of growing.

Like a plant, we have to be pruned sometimes. God is stripping some things, or people, away from our lives. Things and people, that over a period of time, will do us more harm than good. They can be deadly. He wants nothing but the best for us, because He loves us, but it can hurt so bad to say goodbye to those things, habits or people that will do nothing but destroy us in the end. But we should always remember Romans 8:28. No matter how bad it hurts, it’s working for your good.

Picture it like this, imagine in your mind a block of clay that has yet to be shaped and molded. The artist has to chip away at the clay in order to get it to its desired form. The artist is chipping away the imperfections. And like that artist, God chips away at us to cut off the excess baggage that we carry around in our lives, which keep us back from possessing the life that He has for us.

There are some things from which we have to be delivered that only He can do. Possibly things that are strongholds, which left to our own selves and our own devices, we can’t let them go, no matter how hard we try. You have to relinquish control—surrender.

Yes, surrender. That’s not a word most of us like. We all like to be in control. We want to win, no matter the cost. Even if it means hurting someone else, or even ourselves, in the process.

The word “surrender” is actually a process in itself. It takes time to surrender, to finally say, “Okay, Lord, I tried it my way, and my way isn’t getting it done. Your turn now.” Yes, for some of us, we have to wait until we’ve made a big mess of things before we’re just ready to give up. Then God in His infinite love and patience just sighs and says, “Finally!”

Have you ever wondered what life would be like if you just surrendered everything to God? What it would be like to never worry about anything or fear anything? It is possible to have everything your heart desires and live life abundantly. It’s all in our surrender.

Well, if it was that easy, then why don’t we have it? Like I just said, we want to be in control.

I’m reminded of a time I didn’t have peace in my marriage. Whenever my husband, Albert, and I had a disagreement, I would try to use the word of God to manipulate him and try to get him to see things my way. Did it work? NO! Then, the Holy Spirit finally let me know (or maybe I finally decided to listen) that I can’t change him. Only God can change him. It’s up to me to pray for him and love him, unconditionally, whether or not he did what I wanted him to do or behaved how I wanted him to be behave. And, wow, once I listened to the Holy Spirit and stopped arguing with Albert, the peace that I felt, and continue to feel, is awesome. Why? Because I surrendered.

We want to rule the world. Have everything go our way, and life would just be perfect, right? WRONG! When God created Adam and Eve, they were created for worship. And then we all know the story of their disobedience and the disobedience of mankind ever since.

Now we live in a world that forces us to work by the sweat of our brow. A world of pain and sorrow. A world of worry and fear. That was never God’s original plan. But the Bible says that though we are in the world, we are not of the world. We are children of God.

As children of God, we have access to very special benefits. One of those benefits is peace, for example, no matter what is going on in our lives. Total peace, freedom from worry, is just one of the many benefits and blessings that God has for us. There is so much more He has for you!

We can’t control people. And sometimes, we can’t control the things that happen in our lives. Sometimes life just happens. But we can control how we respond to the challenges that life brings our way. Will you respond in anger, bitterness, and unforgiveness, or will you respond in peace? Will you complain, or will you surrender to the hand of God upon your life? We have many weapons and keys that our Father has granted us to overcome the enemy and the problems we encounter. It’s up to us whether or not we utilize those keys.

The keys you will read about in this book have been stepping stones in my own life. I have used them to bring me into the abundant life that I now possess and the abundant life that God promises in His Word for you. Each chapter will give you insight into getting unstuck, living on purpose and possessing everything He has for you. This is your time and your season. Are you ready to unlock the doors of abundant living and live on purpose every day of your life? Then read on, because your time is now!








Step One



Leave the Past Behind:

He’s Doing a New Thing



1


RUN AFTER GOD, FIRST


Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.

Deuteronomy 6:4-5 (NIV)


What does it mean to love God? For me, it means having such adoration for Him that to live without Him is worse than death. Because, if truth be told, without God, we are dead--spiritually. That’s worse than natural death. I’ve been in church all my life, so it’s very hard for me to imagine my life without Christ.

I don’t understand how people call themselves followers of Christ, yet, don’t spend time with Him. They go to church on Sunday, but curse, drink, etc., Monday through Saturday, basically doing their own thing. Then, we come to church and wonder why our services are dead. The fact is, it’s hard to have a spiritually ALIVE church with spiritually DEAD people.

Sometimes, when I’m leading worship in my church and the people are just standing (or sitting) there with no emotion, watching us sing and praise God, I just want to yell, “Come on y’all! Get it together! Wake up!”

I know that one of my life’s assignments is to lead God’s people into His presence through praise and worship. But something that I had to learn a long time ago is, you can’t take people where they don’t want to go. We know the saying, “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.” I can sing song after song. I can be anointed. I can fast and pray. I can cry and sweat. But if the people in the congregation don’t do their part, and by that I mean, love God with their praise and worship, then I sometimes feel that all my tears and sweat are in vain. However, something that God revealed to me is that things aren’t always as they appear. Though it may not look like it, somebody is being blessed. Even if it’s just one person, somebody is getting it.

In John 14:15, Jesus told his disciples, “If you love me, keep my commands.” To love God means to obey Him.

My children are grown now, but when they were younger, I required obedience from them. In my home, Albert and I have always practiced telling our children we love them. So, they have no problem telling us they love us when they feel the urge. However, if my son or daughter told me they loved me, but they never did anything I told them to do, then I would have reason to believe that they really didn’t love me. Why? Because they didn’t do what I asked.

It’s the same thing with God. We can’t say we love Him, but yet don’t do what He says. I put this chapter first, because the first step to receiving everything God has for you is (and excuse my English), you gotta love Him. And more than that, you gotta obey Him.

The Israelites are a prime example of disobedience. So many times they disobeyed God. In the Old Testament, we witness how one king after another disobeyed God, and because of their disobedience, God allowed them to be defeated by their enemies. They never did possess everything God had for them.

What was the last thing God asked you to do, but you still haven’t done it? How many times has our disobedience prevented us from walking in the fullness of God’s blessings?

Our first example of disobedience in the Bible is none other than Adam and Eve. After God created them, he put them in a garden, the Garden of Eden. It was paradise, a place where God lived and talked with them. They had everything they could ever want or need. They could do whatever they wanted to do, with one stipulation. They could not eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. But of course, Satan being as sly as he was, convinced them to do otherwise. Hence, the fall of man. You know the story.

They were thrown out of the Garden of Eden, all because for a brief moment, their love went from God to themselves. They loved themselves, and wanted to please themselves, more than God.

To love God may sound like a simple thing to do. But because of the fallen state of mankind, to love God, to really and truly love God, isn’t that easy for some. It’s easier to do things our own way, to love ourselves and things, rather than God. To love God means to be intimate with Him. It means to desire Him more than your next breath. To obey Him, even if it means going against the norm.

The greatest example of love is Jesus. Again, you know the story of how he came to die for us. Who else in this world loves you so much that they would be willing to die for you?

Before I go up before the congregation to sing, I have to first examine my heart. I have to make sure there’s no disobedience or unrepentant sin in my life. Disobedience, or sin, separates us from not only His blessings, but His presence. If I don’t have anything else in the world, I MUST have His presence.

Some people only love God when He’s pouring out His blessings in their lives. Then, at the first sign of trouble or a problem, they run to everything and everyone else, but God. They run to that person or thing or food that makes them feel good. They run to the familiar.

I want to encourage you to take that first step—love God with all your heart, soul and strength. Only then will you begin to see and walk in the fullness of His love and blessings and purpose for your life. Yes, God has a plan and a purpose for you. Worship Him. Obey Him. And watch His plan unfold before your very eyes.





2


A NEW THING


Remember ye not the former things, neither consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.

Isaiah 43:19


This verse is one of my favorite scriptures. Especially when God says, “Behold, I will do a new thing…” Sometimes, we get stuck in the “former things”—the past. We can’t let go of old habits, old ways of thinking and doing things. I feel in my spirit to say to you right now, “Let it go!” The time is over for regrets. God has a plan for your today, for your tomorrow.The following examples are situations that keep us stuck, afraid to walk into that new thing that God has for us:

-That old boyfriend that keeps hurting you, and deep down inside, you know he is not the one. But you keep holding on to him because you’re scared of being alone.

-You’re unhappy at your job, but don’t want to go anywhere else because of the security your current job gives you.

-You know you need to go back to school to get your degree, but won’t do it because of the fear of how hard it’ll be or how old you are.

-You’ve been hanging around the same friends who don’t seem to be adding to your well-being, but they’re draining you instead. Yet, you still hang out with them, because it’s too hard to make new friends.

-You’ve been wanting to ask for a raise or promotion for the longest time, but won’t do it because of fear of losing your job.

It is time for you to possess everything God has for you. Don’t be afraid of the new thing. God has a new man, a new job, a new career, and new friends waiting for you. But He can’t give it to you until you forget the former things. In other words, God can’t bless you with the new until you let go of the old.

I just want to take a minute to talk to you about the people in your life who were only meant to be in your life for a season, but you have let them overstay their welcome because you didn’t want to hurt their feelings. A lot times, it’s the people we hang around that keep us stuck and they hinder us from walking into our purpose. They call themselves your friend, but when you’re around them, they never have anything positive to say. Let them go! They were just meant to be in your life for a season. That season is over! I was listening to video by the late Dr. Myles Munroe and he said:


If you are in a group and you’re the smartest in the group, it’s time to leave the group. You don’t want to be in a group that can’t grow you, expand you and improve you. You need to do an inventory of your friends and the people you hang around.1


Your relationships should be assets, not deficits. The people in your life should add value to you, not take value away from you by causing you to speak or act in ways that decrease your value. God wants to bring you into a new season. A season of freshness and wholeness.

Many times we miss the direction and leading of the Holy Spirit because our pipes are clogged, for lack of a better word. You know how the pipes in your house get clogged up with hair or food, which in turn makes it hard for the water to get through or go down?

God has wisdom and revelation that He wants to pour down into your spirit to get you to that next level. But He can’t because your mind and spirit are clogged up with so much junk, that nothing else can get in.

If you can, you just need to close your eyes right now and take a deep breath. Tell God, “Father, please help me get the junk out.”

“Well, how do I do this,” you may ask. It requires submission. That means that you may have to say no to some people or things that keep you from reaching your goals and dreams. This may mean saying no to yourself. Your flesh wants a lot of things that really aren’t bad, but they’re not good for you, for this season in your life.

Submitting means saying yes to God. Some of you are afraid to say yes because of the cost. You want God to do something new, something greater in your life, but you feel that the cost is too high. But He even made a provision for that. I love God because once you say yes, He makes it easy for you. Notice that in Isaiah 43:19, God said, “…I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.” In other words, even in your hardest times, your driest times, He will make a way. So, you see? You don’t have to do it alone. He won’t ask you to do anything that He hasn’t already equipped you for.

When Albert came home from prison five years ago, my children and I were living in a nice apartment in a good neighborhood in Rochester, Michigan. However, once the state found out that Albert, an ex-convict on probation (at the time) was living there, the parole office basically evicted us from Michigan, and told us that we had to move back to Toledo, where Albert was convicted. Talk about a blow to our faith!

We didn’t know where we were going to go. One day we drove to Toledo to look at some homes to rent that we could afford. It’s funny now, but at the time, it was anything but funny. Albert literally cried after we saw some of the homes and neighborhoods in our price range. It bothered him so much to think about uprooting his wife and children from a gorgeous, affluent area to a place that looked like a slum. It was bad!

Instead, we decided to get out of debt first and wait until we had the money for a down payment for a home in a good neighborhood that met our standards. I’m so glad that God gave us the wisdom to wait. However, this meant that Albert would have to leave me and the kids temporarily (again), and he would live with some close friends of ours who lived in Toledo.

He was ordered not to come back to Michigan until he was off probation. But, on the weekends, he would sneak into Michigan anyway so that we could be together, if even for only a few hours. Fortunately, this only lasted for around five months. It wasn’t long because the Lord made “a way in the wilderness”. And now we have a beautiful home and we tell everybody, “God did it.”

It wasn’t easy. I had to leave my job. Our children hated it because they had to leave their friends. But, God is faithful. He blessed Albert with a good job, me with another job and the kids made new friends.

Isaiah 1:19 says, “If you are willing and obedient, you will eat the fat (good things) of the land.” Obedience is key. Don’t believe the lie of the enemy. You’re in the right place at the right time for God to do something new in your life--when you submit to Him and His way.

You may be in a wilderness or a dry place in your life right now. Let God come in and drench your dry places. He wants to do a new thing in you, through you and for you.



3


WHAT YOU LOOKIN’ AT?


“…and that the Lord may keep his promise to me: ‘If your descendants watch how they live, and if they walk faithfully before me with all their heart and soul, you will never fail to have a successor on the throne of Israel.’”


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