“Be Careful how you think; your life is shaped by your thoughts” Proverbs 4:23 (GNB).
What am I thinking as I encounter those around me? Is there a conscious effort to look past words and appearances, in order to gain insight into the miracle of God’s creation? I pray; “Give me your eyes that I may see those in front of me as you do. Help me to know with a heart of love and compassion the possibilities in each one.”
Each year, looking toward this season of giving thanks, while in the midst of world unrest, feels like a dichotomy. Yet when we seek time with our Savior, He gives us hope through His vision. It seems like no matter what, there will always be people and situations we are thankful for – and those that bring heartache. I find that prayer and standing on God’s promises, along with time spent in silence before Him, provide refreshing life-filled perspectives to live from. I am someone for whom focusing on evil exchanges whether true or fiction is upsetting. While atrocities against humanity are a reality in this world – I have come to the realization that the only sane approach to walking in the midst of all of this, is in love and wisdom.
Relationships can present emotional rubric cube dynamics that can leave me feeling bewildered at times. Yet, as I consider Romans 12:2, “Let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think,” (NLT) – hope springs forth as I am reminded that there is a divine way to look upon the situation. So I ask for guidance, wisdom, and love to pursue reconciliation and restoration. This is a deliberate act on my part, for sadly, it can be all too easy to overlook this step especially in the midst of emotional fire. We have all grown up in environments that have ‘colored’ how we view every aspect of life. We had modeled before us varied ways and approaches for being in different types of relationship and circumstances.
• How was conflict handled in your home?
• Did you grow up with one or both parents? Perhaps a guardian?
• Was there open communication, or attempts at covering the truth to hold on to some semblance of peace?
• Were family members close or distant – geographically and emotionally?
These items represent a small portion of the influences in our development. And there are many ways of handling these situations with just as many outcomes. The Good News is that the Lord has given His life so that we don’t need to remain stuck in old behavior patterns. He understands what it means to live submitted in one’s physical, emotional, and spiritual characteristics before the Father. We are here to be in relationship with Him, and to serve His purpose for our lives.
What does being in relationship with Him and serving His purpose look like?
For me, I spend the first part of my morning praying, studying, listening and writing. When my schedule doesn’t allow for this, I take advantage of opportunities throughout the day to spend time with the Lord. I ask Him to show me how to encourage those around me, i.e., “Please give me the words and or actions that will encourage those I am with today.” I also set my mind to say “Yes,” to the opportunities I believe He brings before me. I ask Him to help me to see – with His eyes.
Whatever you are working through today, I pray that you will seek Him, and His Word. I ask His Holy Spirit to guide and direct your steps as you seek to do God’s will. May you come to know His love, peace, wisdom, and provision as you surrender your will. I can tell you that working to the best of my ability while trusting Him to add His excellence, has taken undue stress from my life – and that is my hope for you. May you walk in the liberty that comes from applying His truth that is lived out in trust and in love.
From my heart to yours,