For we are God’s [own] handiwork (His workmanship), recreated in Christ Jesus, [born anew] that we may do those good works which God predestined (planned beforehand) for us [taking paths which He prepared ahead of time], that we should walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us to live].
Ephesians 2:10 describes what I consider to be a delightful life. But some days, living that good life described above is difficult. We hear of places experiencing hardships after floods, fires, hurricanes, volcanos, and other natural disasters. We are bombarded with news of corrupt politicians, wars, sex trafficking, abortions, and other evils in this world. While I may not be personally affected by each of these things, as a Christian and an intercessor, my heart hurts for those who are.
And then there are the questions that bombard my mind when I hear of those things. Am I doing enough to help those affected? Am I praying enough? Am I giving enough? Should I have done more? Our enemy throws guilt and condemnation at us almost faster than our shield can quench those fiery darts.
I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.] John 16:33 AMPC
At times it is easy to become overwhelmed by it all. You can become so bogged down that you forget God has planned a delightful life for you. If you aren't careful, you can lose sight of the paths he has prearranged and walk in a way that leads somewhere other than that delightful life. Instead, you keep your eye on the ball, your head in the game, your feet on the ground, not let anyone dull your sparkle. Then you can live like there is no tomorrow, laugh like no one is listening, and dance as if no one is watching!
Below are some more catchphrases that may help you remember to live the life God has for YOU!
Bloom where you are planted. You are living where God has placed you. I was born to live at this time in America. I don't know why He chose this, and I'm not Chinese or Middle Eastern or even living in another century. But He did, and His plans are perfect. Embrace the you He created and bloom right where you are.
Stay in your own lane. As compassionate people, we want to help anyone who is hurting. It would be easy to spend all day and night praying for everyone. We want to give to every good cause and spend our time making things better for them. And while this seems to be a good thing, it's not. God has a plan for every situation, and it involves all of us doing our own assignments. Only God can do it all. Find and do your assignment, then trust that God will take care of the rest.
Live Well - Laugh Often - Love Much
Cultivate an attitude of gratitude. Don't let guilt or condemnation rob you of your joy. It's ok to be thankful for what you have while others are suffering.
I'm grateful I live in America and not in a third-world country. I'm thankful our garden hasn't been washed away by the rain. I'm blessed my children are doing well.
Guard your heart. "Get rid of all bitterness, rage, and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you." Ephesians 4:31-32
You can't pour from an empty cup. Take time to fill up by spending time in the presence of the Lord. Spend some time each morning worshiping Him. It will help keep your focus on Him and what He is doing. You will be strengthened and refreshed, so you're able to continue with your assignment.
Forget dancing like no one is watching-
Dance like a toddler- they hear their own music.
Until further notice, celebrate everything. Do you celebrate the latest natural disaster? No, you celebrate what the Lord is doing in it. He didn't cause it, but He will certainly use it for His advantage.
If you can't find anything else to celebrate, remember Ps 118:24. "This is the day the Lord has made; I will rejoice and be glad in it!"
Do you have a phrase that helped you during the difficult times?
Please share it with us in the comments below.