Skip to main content

Are we continuing in the right direction?

Many of life's failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up. (Thomas A. Edison)

Do you give up easily? Or are you one of those tenacious individuals that will never say die? I used to be in the 'never say die' camp, but as I have grown a little older (and hopefully a little wiser), I am probably somewhere in the middle now. I don't give up too easily, but I don't beat a dead horse, either!

My friends, do not be surprised at the terrible trouble which now comes to test you. Do not think that something strange is happening to you. So those who suffer as God wants should trust their souls to the faithful Creator as they continue to do what is right. (I Peter 4:12, 19)

Testing comes - count on it. You can give up easily, walking away totally defeated; finish a bit of the test, then walk away; or hold on for dear life until you convince yourself you know the reason for the test, all the while missing the real reason. It amazes me that God's children think testing is supposed to never happen once they say 'yes' to Jesus - like it is some strange force at work. The 'strange force' you think is at work is really the enemy of your soul, hoping you will cave sometime soon. Worse yet, that 'strange force' could be your own stubborn pride or envy. Ever see someone just doing something because they were trying to 'outdo' someone else? They keep hitting roadblock after roadblock but fail to see that it is God's roadblock they are bumping into repeatedly. Their stubborn pride makes it impossible for them to admit they need to just stop. Sadly, that was me for a long, long time.

In the end of all that head-butting with God I learned the important lesson of recognizing a roadblock as a warning I wasn't to continue to pursue that path any longer. How about you? Have you been coming up against roadblocks in your path and attributing them to 'not having the right plan' and 'needing to return to the drawing board' instead of stopping to listen? The hardest thing to admit sometimes is that the force opposing us is US. Trials and testing come - we can be sure of this. Roadblocks will not always be of our own doing, but when we stop at each roadblock to evaluate WHO put it there (God, the devil, or our own self), we might just find there are some we need to plow through, while turning completely around at others. When put there by Satan, we might find God tells us to move it aside and trod on. When we erect it or he puts it squarely there, it is time to listen closely to 'why' it is there, 'how' we deal with it, and 'what' we are to do if we ever encounter it again. Just sayin!


Popular posts from this blog

What did obedience cost Mary and Joseph?

As we have looked at the birth of Christ, we have considered the fact he was born of a virgin, with an earthly father so willing to honor God with his life that he married a woman who was already pregnant.  In that day and time, a very taboo thing.  We also saw how the mother of Christ was chosen by God and given the dramatic news that she would carry the Son of God.  Imagine her awe, but also see her tremendous amount of fear as she would have received this announcement, knowing all she knew about the time in which she lived about how a woman out of wedlock showing up pregnant would be treated.  We also explored the lowly birth of Jesus in a stable of sorts, surrounded by animals, visited by shepherds, and then honored by magi from afar.  The announcement of his birth was by angels - start to finish.  Mary heard from an angel (a messenger from God), while Joseph was set at ease by a messenger from God on another occasion - assuring him the thing he was about to do in marrying Mary wa

A brilliant display indeed

Love from the center of who you are ; don’t fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. Be good friends who love deeply ; practice playing second fiddle. Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don’t quit in hard times; pray all the harder. (Romans 12:9-12) Integrity and Intensity don't seem to fit together all that well, but they are uniquely interwoven traits which actually complement each other. "Love from the center of who you are; don't fake it." God asks for us to have some intensity (fervor) in how we love (from the center of who we are), but he also expects us to have integrity in our love as he asks us to be real in our love (don't fake it). They are indeed integral to each other. At first, we may only think of integrity as honesty - some adherence to a moral code within. I believe there is a little more to integrity than meets the eye. In the most literal sense,

Do me a favor

If you’ve gotten anything at all out of following Christ, if his love has made any difference in your life, if being in a community of the Spirit means anything to you, if you have a heart, if you care—then do me a favor: Agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends. Don’t push your way to the front; don’t sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don’t be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand. (Philippians 2:1-4) Has God's love made ANY difference in your life? What is that difference? Most of us will likely say that our lives were changed for the good, while others will say there was a dramatic change. Some left behind lifestyles marked by all manner of outward sin - like drug addiction, alcoholism, prostitution, or even thievery. There are many that will admit the things they left behind were just a bit subtler - what we can call inward sin - things like jealousy,