Each day brings new challenges, new opportunities, new vistas… What am I seeing today as I journey down the river of life? I am seeing that, which eyes I see with, is important.
When I am grateful, I see what God is doing in us all of us despite ourselves.
When I am thinking only about what pleases me, I am never content, and everything and everyone displeases me.
After spending time in God’s Word and in prayer, I love people more, I see the big picture and what’s really important more clearly.
When I am dwelling on my problems I can hardly get myself to do the necessary things of life.
After reading or hearing the “news” I have mixed feelings. I feel frustrated and angry when it’s just me…
…When I remember we are talking about individuals God loves, my main feelings are sadness that so many people in our nation and in Europe have turned away from the only One who truly loves them to trust in themselves and their own human understanding. Christians among these (me too sometimes). I also experience wonder and bewilderment that God allows even “them” (whoever “they” are at the time) to practice their free will (unjustly); followed by gladness that God is absolutely dedicated to allowing each of us, individually, time and space (freedom) to “see”–if we will—and to choose whether we will love Him and His good, just ways or not; followed by relief and gratitude that He hasn’t judged me immediately for my own sins and mistakes and shortcomings (unjustness).
When I’m heedless of anything but my own comfort, and things are going along pretty well, there is no problem I can’t solve–until things quickly dissolve.
When things aren’t going so well, I quickly remember and find true, there is no problem GOD can’t solve.
When sometimes, even the smallest thing goes wrong, and I dwell on it and dwell on it, it grows and grows until EVERYTHING seems impossible.
After I put my eyes back on the fact that God is all-seeing, past, present, and future and all-powerful and stop relying on my own understanding (what I think of my own abilities, of a situation, or of someone else, etc…) and sincerely turn it all over to Him for His help and guidance, immediately whatever was upside-down begins to be righted—even in the midst of horrible circumstances.
When I am tempted beyond my control and I give in, I feel worse about myself, no matter my justification.
When I am tempted beyond my control and I choose to love God (and others) more than (whatever it is) and whole-heartedly turn it, including my desire, over to God, He gives deliverance.
When I am trying to make my plans and to have more control of my life, I get frustrated and it doesn’t end until I stop.
When I submit to whatever it is God has already given me, in other words: what I know by His Word and Spirit and the conscience He has given me to be right, and try to love and be kind to those already in my life, and do well the tasks already at hand, and help others in their present need wherever I can, I feel content in God’s pleasure, and life is well worth living.
Sometimes escaping, one way or another, works for a while—but only for that while—then come the consequences. They always come, and sometimes they aren’t really worth the price paid.
So what am I seeing as I travel this river called life? What do I see more and more clearly as I journey? Not just in the above instances, but in all situations? There are no REAL substitutes. Life goes better, the journey is even joyful, not with Coca-Cola, but with God—The One whose Spirit presence is with us through Jesus.