Welcome back friends! I hope you experienced a more positive day yesterday as a result of starting this heart and attitude adjustment challenge. Lets go ahead and jump right into today’s challenge!
Do you ever feel like God is picking on you? As if He might be working overtime to try to tests your faith through the many trials that seem to keep coming?
In fact, you may even feel like a modern day Job at times, certain that God has given the enemy permission to attack you from every direction. But how sad it would be to have to get up every morning feeling that way! Waking up to an attitude of woe-is-me every day, is a sure recipe for a big ‘ol heaping portion of pessimism pie!
We all know that life is hard. But sometimes it seems we have more than our fair share of hard stuff to deal with – and sometimes, that may actually be true. Yet even harder than dealing with problems, is mastering the art of not letting those problems destroy our attitudes, steal our joy, or weaken our faith.
When we are struggling, we can become so focused on the problems, that we can easily become consumed by them. Drowning in a sea of despair and worry, unable to see anything good, because our eyes are blinded by frustration and worry.
If we step back and get an eagle’s eye view, we can be reminded that although disappointment, failure and difficulties are part of our lives, they do not signify the entirety of our existence. We can either choose to drown, or choose to fight. Fight for optimism. Fight for an attitude of gratitude. Fight for faith, despite our feelings. Fight for a life filled with joy, instead of negativity.
The old Indian Proverb which I stated above holds the moral that we should take our eyes off of the things that are not going right in our lives, and focus on all the things that are. How often do we focus on the bad, instead of remembering the good? How often do we complain about God’s seemingly lack of intervention in some situations, while failing to thank Him for all the ways He is moving in our life in other areas?
If you think about it, life is like a puzzle. Some pieces of the puzzle are fun, rewarding, and exciting. Other puzzle pieces are hard, sad, and difficult. Some pieces are easy to understand and we know right where to place them, while others are confusing and we feel frustrated in not being able to understand how they fit into the big puzzle picture.
But nonetheless, all the pieces fit together to make up this unique life that God has given us. One life. Our life.
A life that is not perfect, but is filled with God’s love. Psalm 36:5 says “Your unfailing love, O Lord, is as vast as the heavens; your faithfulness reaches beyond the clouds.”
I know how easy it is to forget that God loves us, when it seems He is allowing hardship and pain to fill our days. But I have to realize that before we can sincerely trust in God’s ways, we have to first embrace the truth of how much He loves us.
So even though God may allow or even cause difficulties in our lives, according to His will, He always has a purpose for everything, as we are told in Romans 8:28. His goal is not to make us miserable, but to draw us closer to Him during the triumphs and defeats; during the mountaintop experiences and the times in the valley; through the good and the bad.
God could change our circumstances at any time, but He is always more interested in changing us through our circumstances, rather than simply changing our circumstances.
1 Peter 1:6-7 In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.
If you have been blaming God for your problems, or have been angry at God for allowing trials to happen in your life, ask God today to forgive you for doubting His sovereignty.
Pray earnestly and ask God to show you how He is at work in the midst of your circumstances and relationships. Pray for open eyes and an open heart to be able to see His activity in your life, and for the strength and willpower to trust that something good can come out of even the worst situations. Ask for the ability to be thankful for what you do have, instead of what you do not.
Jot down a few of your biggest hardships, and try to think of at least one positive thing that could come out of it. Most importantly, practice being optimistic – despite what is going on around you.
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