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Broaden Your Life
By Joel Osteen - Mar 04, 2011
In order to be all that God has called you to be, you have to be open to see things in a new way. You have to be willing to press past what I call "invisible walls."

An invisible wall is something very subtle. It's an attitude that says, "We don't associate with those people because they're not like us. They don't dress like us. They don't live in our neighborhood. They don't worship the way we do. They're not our same nationality." So you just, very quietly, keep your distance. You smile, you say hello, but there is an unseen barrier that separates you. But let me tell you, if all of your friends look like you, dress like you and live in your neighborhood, then you are missing out. When you live with such a narrow focus, you're only experiencing a small portion of what God has for you. If you don't broaden your life and get rid of little prejudices, then those invisible walls can keep you from your destiny. The very people you are avoiding, the ones you're saying, "They're not from my camp; they're not for me" could be the divine connections that hold the key to your dreams coming to pass!

I've learned that God doesn't just use people to help me that look like me, dress like me and come from my same background. God likes variety. But sometimes we get stuck in our own little box. I call it a "prison of prejudice." It doesn't mean that we are bad people, but we have these attitudes. "They're Baptist and I'm Catholic. I'm staying away from them." "They're Democrat and I'm a Republican. They're unclean." "They're an Aggie. I'm a Longhorn." Or more seriously, "They're black and I'm white. They're Hispanic. I'm Asian. They're blue collar and I'm white collar." Friend, God uses all people. Every person that has breath to breathe was created in the image of Almighty God. Who are we to judge and think, "You're not for me. You're the wrong skin color. You're the wrong nationality?" No, nobody chose their skin color. None of us could choose who our parents would be or what country we would be born in; God chose that! If we look down on people and refuse to associate with them, really, we are shunning our own Creator. He holds the key to blessing, favor and honor. You can't disrespect God's children and expect Him to bless you at the same time. It doesn't matter if you're black, white, brown, yellow, American, African, European or Hispanic—we all bleed red! No matter what you look like, no matter where you've come from, as long as your blood is red, you're my brother, you're my sister.

Do you know skin color is less than one-sixteenth of an inch deep? I'm not going to be so petty as to let one-sixteenth of an inch come between us! We need each other. We need each other's wisdom and encouragement. We may be different cultures, nationalities and skin colors; but let's remember, really, we're only one-sixteenth of an inch different.

Today, as you go about your day, look for ways to broaden your life by broadening your circle. Don't just associate with people who are like you; associate with people you can learn from, grow with, people who will help you see a different perspective on life. Remember, God created all of us on purpose and for a purpose. When you broaden your thinking and love all people, you are honoring God and opening the door for Him to bless you and use you in ways you never thought possible!

The LORD does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart (1 Samuel 16:7b, NIV).
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