Summary: Steps to avoiding your God given potential
The Lord gives every person great potential, but few seem to come close to realizing it.
Illustration: Samson possessed great potential for God, but gave into temptations that eventually destroyed him. Why do so many people with great promise fritter away their opportunities? Let us look at the life of Samson to discover how to not waste our God given abilities, gifts and resources.
1. Samson was blessed of God with Godly parents. When we are given the gift of a Godly family we have a greater responsibility to make the most of our heritage. (Judges 13,14,15)
2. Samson was blessed of God with great strength. He tore a lion apart with his bare hands. He killed thirty men single handedly.
3. Samson was blessed of God with a Nazarite vow that equipped him with a special calling and capabilities for spiritual service. Samson had an opportunity to deliver Israel from a set of corrupt priests of Hophni and Phinehas, but he failed.
4. Samson is a picture of many Christians who have great power available to them, but fail to use it for the right purposes. Like Samson, many believers allow the worries, riches and pleasures of this life to choke out the power, potential and energy of the Spirit’s leadership in their life.
5. Samson had great strength, but he also had a terrible weakness. Samson was unwilling to conquer his lust for women. Many Christians have been disqualified from service because of immorality.
6. Samson demanded that his parents get a certain beautiful girl for him. His impudent attitude indicated a lack of respect for authority. Failure to respect those who are placed over us is a symptom that something may be wrong with our submission to the Lord.
7. Samson made outward beauty the only criteria for his selection of female companions. He failed to realize that outward beauty is insignificant compared with the inner beauty of Godliness.
8. Samson knew that God and his parent advised all Israelites not to marry pagan women. He was stubborn in wanting to carry out his own interests even at the objection of Godly advisors.
9. Samson failed to remember that 90% of relationship problems in marriage result from failure to understand the purposes why God established the union between a man and a woman:
10. Leaving one’s parents – Too much dependence on parent’s for emotional, financial, or social support stifles the growth of any marriage.
11. Cleaving to one’s wife – Failure to be committed to one’s mate unreservedly leads to a shallow relationship that hinders spiritual growth.
12. Becoming one flesh with one’s mate – Accepting one another with a likeness of mind in pursuing similar goals.
13. Becoming naked, open and honest with one another – Developing intimacy in all areas.
14. Samson defied any authority and so would eventually be humbled by the Lord. We have a choice to humble ourselves before God or He will do it against our will for us.
15. Samson chose to follow the patterns of other godless people who thought they could achieve happiness through worldly pleasures, wisdom, and behavior. Samson forsook the faith of parents
16. Samson was responsible for falling into the trap set by the Philistines. It is by one’s own lust that a person is damaged. No one can blame the Lord for their mistakes.
17. Samson was allowed to accomplish God’s will because He cried to the Lord for intervention and strength. God will never forsake believers. He waits to hear their cry for deliverance from everything. Do not think that it is too late to call on the Lord for help in any situation or time. "There is only one life that soon will pass. Only what is done for Christ will last!"