....the first offer

I've done quite a few fasts over the past 40 years....spiritual ones.....health ones..... weight loss ones..... the one common denominator was that at the end of the fast whether it was 3 days, 7 days. 10 days. I was hungry! I agree with Mumford's saying that "my stomach was ready to eat my shirttails" :)

One thing I never did was a 40 day fast..... I can't imagine how hungry I would be after that.... that is the biological limit for starvation. And here I am out in the desert, talking to my Father for 40 days with nothing to eat and I am looking at these flat stones that look like a flat-bread that just came out of the oven! Man.... I can even smell it!

Along comes this Satan dude with a very simple answer..... Jesus.... just use the power that you have and turn these stones into bread. What's the sense of having all that power available to you and not give yourself a little food. I mean, that's a good thing..... eating is good..... might just keep you alive even.

What's Jesus response? Basically that there are other things we can get life from besides bread. At various times in scripture we see that He said things like that....He had food we don't know about.... His life was from His relationship with His Father....His will was to do the will of His Father.... He on ly did what the Father told Him to do..... always in obedience..... Jesus never did one self serving thing....never... He wasn't going to use His power to serve Himself..... only to serve Father.

He had no problems feeding thousands of people out of a couple loaves and fishes. Water into wine? No problem here... the difference was that Father told Him to do that... the power was to serve others... not to serve Himself.

I lived in miracle after miracle back in 1968.... God did anything I asked Him to do..... it was all self serving.... then Father decided it was time for Philip to grow up and stop playing in the sand box. You see, it was not developing any character in Philip by giving Philip every selfish little thing he wanted....if we do that with our kids they will grow up as selfish little monsters. I was God's little "gimmee/gimmee/want/want kid!" It was time.

I thought for sure I was being trained to be the next great healer.....I would pray for people and God would heal them. Yesssss! I was God's man of faith and power for the hour! No bout adout it! That's another little problem we have when we start using God's power for personal adulation. I am the greatest show on earth! Of course, I am the only one that ever felt like that..... so God had to deal with it. It was simple. I prayed for this young man with leukemia (predicting how God was now going to raise him up as a great testimony to Himself) and, you know what.....the young man died.

I needed to go back to the drawing board..... it has been a 40 year process. Wait till you see the next temptation.


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