If you were to think about the state of our economy and the condition of the rest of the world, you would be hard pressed to find anything to be happy about, but Christians do have a reason to be happy because they have Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. The world of a Christian who has a personal relationship with Jesus Christ is far different than the world of an unbeliever. Jesus gave his life so that the children of God can have a new life – one filled with joy, peace and where all things are possible. Christians are no longer subject to sin but have the power to sin less and to walk in the spirit of God that gives them life and liberty that can not be understood by the outside world.
A relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ moves you out of religion and into a state of mind that is limitless and supernatural. Challenges are looked upon as an opportunity for a Christian to get closer to their heavenly Father and allow God to work everything out for his/her good. The key is that Christians focus upon God; they think only about those things that are pure, lovely, just and righteous and this is what brings them happiness. Christians have found out that the material things of this world don’t bring the happiness that is found in Jesus. They have also found out that God created them for a purpose and they are happy only by doing God’s will. Christians know what God wants them to do and where God wants them to be because it is in that place that they feel the security of being under a divine covering that provides a hedge around them that nothing else in this world can offer them.
Christians know that happiness comes from within and their source of happiness is knowing who God is, who His Son is and living a life where they are loved unconditionally. This type of love is put there to be given away to those in the world who do not yet know their secret and, hopefully, others will be drawn to the light that will give them freedom in Christ and this freedom will cause them to rejoice always. Choose to seek God and His righteousness and everything else that you need will be provided for you – especially unspeakable joy. God wants you to be happy – are you?
Maturity is not defined by age, education or wealth but rather it is an attitude that defines who you are and what you do. You can be 50 years old with an abundance of weath and college degrees but lack the maturity to handle life’s challenges properly. An immature person buckles down under pressure and lacks the wisdom to find the appropriate solution for the trials they face. An immature person is always asking ‘what is in this for me?’ They lack sensitivity to other people and do not consider that someone else just might be in need of their help. An immature person does not have control over what comes out of their mouth. They gossip and are judgmental and are kown as troublemakers and lack the desire to be a peacemaker. An immature person refuses to entertain the thought that God just might be able to help them.
A mature person holds up under pressure and is loving and kind hearted and does not speak unkindly of others. A mature person will always take the high road and look for ways to be a peacemaker and not destroy relationships to justify themselves. A mature person will also be patient and prayerful because they know that God is in control and He is always there to help in a time of need. This kind of person knows that he or she is still a work in progress and knows that God has a lot for them yet to learn and they are willing to walk with God and enjoy their relationship with Him.
Do a self examination and ask yourself if you are still immature or are you making progress in the maturity side of life. Spiritual maturity is learned and it is not given to you just because you might have been on this earth for 50 years or more. Your attitude while you are undergoing the rough times will define how well you are growing spiritually. Seek to be all that God wants you to be. Stay in God’s Word and love others as you do yourself.
Every Christian should meditate on Romans 8:28. If you get this verse into your spirit and into your heart, you will be able to live the victoriously life that your heavenly Father expects you to. In summary, Romans 8:28 says that ‘all things will work together for the good for those who love God and are called according to his purposes.’ This is not a maybe or something that you should hope for, but it is something that you should expect because it is certain to happen.
The word ‘all’ includes everything, both the good and the bad; there is nothing left out. Many people accept the good in their lives with no problem but when they encounter the bad, they think that something is terribly wrong. If you believe the truth of God’s word, you must realize that God has made you a promise that ‘all’ things will work together for your good. You must trust God with your whole heart and believe that He has everything under His control and, therefore, there is no reason to panic. Life is like baking a cake. You probably would not like to eat just butter or baking powder separately; but when they are mixed in with everything else, you will wind up with a good tasting cake. The experiences you encounter on your life’s journey may not look promising when taken out of context but when it is all said and done, you realize that everything you have gone through in your life this far has made you the person you are today. Life lessons are learned precept upon precept, line upon line and just like the knowledge of God, you acquire wisdom after going through good times and bad times.
Despite all the evil that Joseph experienced at the hands of his brothers who hated him, at the end he was able to forgive them and tell them that what they meant for evil, God meant for good because many people were spared in the time of famine because God’s will had been done in Joseph’s life. Proverbs 3:5 tells us to ‘trust in the Lord at all times and not to lean unto our own understanding.’ You might not be able to figure out why you experience certain challenges in your life, but hold onto the truth that God has a plan and a purpose for you if you only believe. Encourage yourself in the Lord today. Satan would like for you to throw in the towel but God is saying “it will all be worth it.”
Everybody wants to win; nobody wants to lose but on our spiritual journey there are going to be times when the only way to win is to lose. Jesus told us that ‘whoever finds his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.’ Letting go so that God sits on the throne of your heart is the best thing anyone can do. We all have people in our lives and things in our lives that we love most dearly but if they should ever become more important to us that our heavenly Father, we have lost. Losing everything and being hopelessly hopeless is the only true way to love God. Being hopelessly hopeless forces you to be totally dependent upon God and that is the position that God wants all of His children to be in. This position is what causes God to bless and protect those who are called by His name.
The Bible says that for everything there is a season; there is a time to seek and a time to lose and if that principle governs your life, you will always be a winner because that still small voice inside of you will let you know when you have gotten things out of order. Obeying the word of God will require you to lose a little so that you will gain much because your eyes have not yet seen all that God has in store for you. Holding on to people or stuff too closely will only hinder God’s will being done in your life, and if you truly love the Lord, you will always be willing to give back to God what He has placed you a steward over. Abraham loved God to the degree that he was willing to give up his child, Isaac, because he believed that God was able to restore him back and that is exactly what God did. Abraham showed what was in his heart and God saw that there was nothing more important in Abraham’s life than Him.
We all can learn from Abraham how important it is to trust and obey God and more importantly to realize that we are stewards and not owners of our earthly possessions. God not only gives us the power to get wealth, but God provides us with His mercy and grace in allowing us to watch over what He has provided. Never allow anyone or anything to have first place in your life except your Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ and if you have a tugging in your soul or a little voice speaking to you, please remember that sometimes you must lose in order to win.