We all have habits that we need to get rid of. However, there is a particular habit that Jesus is more concerned about breaking than the one you are thinking of: it isthe desire to get your own way.
“Since Jesus went through everything you’re going through and more, learn to think like him. Think of your sufferings as a weaning from that old sinful habit of always expecting to get your own way.Then you’ll be able to live out your days free to pursue what God wants instead of being tyrannized by what you want.”
1 Peter 4:1-2 MSG
When we struggle, we may think it is because God doesn’t love us. In reality, it might be that He loves you so much that He will use the stressful opportunity at hand to break the habit of the-only-way-I-will-be-happy-is-when-I-get-my-way.
God has more for you than that and He calls it freedom.
“And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.” 1 John 4:16 NIV
Motives are the “why” behind the “what” of your life.
When you are soul drained, your “why” is to survive, to make it through one more day.
Survival is a good “why” but it is not meant to be your permanent state of being.
God has more for you.
He is the God of inside workings, attitude makeovers, perspective shifters.
He is the forgiving God, the wipe the slate clean and start over God.
He is the miracle-making God and the create something out of nothing God.
Your Heavenly Father created you in love, to love, and to be loved.
God so loved you that He sent His Son as a sacrifice to restore you to Himself.
He didn’t do it out of duty, He did it out of love.
He does not live out of duty but out of love and wants the same for you.
When your “why” comes from love it feeds your spirit and invigorates your soul.
May the God of the inside workings move you from surviving to thriving. May the forgiving God wipe clean the slate of the past and help you start over today. May the miracle-making God, create something out of nothing and fill you up with so much of His love that it overflows onto all those around you.
“GOD, my shepherd! I don’t need a thing. You have bedded me down in lush meadows, you find me quiet pools to drink from. True to your word, you let me catch my breath and send me in the right direction.”
Psalm 23:1-3 MSG
Life is unpredictable.
Every day brings the unexpected and unplanned for.
The good news is that you have a Shepherd, someone to guide you through it. He sees ahead, helps you walk through the rough spots, takes you where you need to go and protects you along the way. Dangers may loom, predators may attack but you are not alone.
You have a shepherd and his name is Jesus.
Are you tired and worn out?
Like a good shepherd, Jesus will lead you to quiet places to restore your tired soul.
When was the last time your spirit was rested refreshed and at peace?
Is your soul starved?
Jesus will lead you to green pastures that will feed your hungry heart. He has made you with intentional and unique ways of refilling yourself when you’re empty. When was the last time you spent time doing what fills your soul?
Are you feeling lost?
God will guide you to the right paths to take. He has created you on purpose for a purpose and will guide you to it.
When was the last time you asked Him to show you the right path for this season? Sometimes we continue on an old path from an old season until we look around and say, “I’m not in the right place”. Jesus is the present God who will give you updated guidance to get you on the path you are meant to be on today.
He will lead you through the hills, the valleys, the deserts, and all the while, in the middle of it all, will provide a place for you to rest, refill, refocus in Him.
Jesus is the good Shepherd and He will lead you to what you really need today.
You are loved today wherever you are: at home, in a hospital, doing online school, on a Zoom meeting, doing the dishes or distracting yourself on YouTube.
You are loved whether you are doing good or not so good. Whether you feel you have a handle on all the anxiety or you feel like the anxiety has a hold on you.
Jesus loved you at the worst you have ever been, He loves you where you are today and will love you where you are tomorrow.
This is the relentless love of God and I am praying that it will give you the courage to do whatever you must do today.
May the God of uncontainable love drench you in His presence. May His awe-inspiring grace recharge your hope and fill your faith with the courage to trust Him. May you never forget that He has you in the palm of His hand.