Friday, September 3, 2010

Make up your mind

Looking back over my short life I have already seen many people fall away from God. A lot of them got involved in things they shouldn't have and that is why they fell away from Him. But there are others who got discouraged because they got their eyes on the waves and not on Jesus. Let me give you an example. This is a true story. The name of the individual it is about has been changed.

Jessica was a beautiful Pentecostal girl who had a good head on her shoulders. A lot of guys liked her. People would look at her life and see she had everything going for her. She was musically talented, very involved at church, a leader in her youth group, had a car and a job, and did well in school. She used to tell me of the things she wanted to do for God. She was always the first one praying up front at youth service. She sang and played the piano at youth services and youth camps. One day something really bad happened to her that was not her fault. People found out something had happened and she thought everyone was talking her down. She got discouraged and began struggling to stay in church. She starting focusing on the waves and the storm that was happening in her life. Her eyes weren't on Jesus anymore, because of the storm. She fell away from God. She left her church and her family. She got involved in the things of the world and is already living with regrets. Her life could have turned out so beautifully if she would have kept her eyes on God and where He wanted to take her. But because of what happened to her, she lost her focus and sunk beneath the waves.
  • Don't base your faithfulness to God off of life's circumstances.
What happened to this young girl with so much potential? She began to give less of her time to God because of what had happened to her. She was discouraged and she focused on those things that were discouraging her. When you focus on your trials, you'll lose your faithfulness to the work of God. We all have trials and we all have heartache. Hard times do come to everyone and if we aren't careful with what we focus on, we can easily become bitter and angry with God. I am so encouraged by those who are going through the trial of their life, yet they are faithful in their prayer and devotion to God, and they are still doing their very best to do whatever they can to serve God and work for Him. Those are the ones that will come out on top. Yes, life does throw some very difficult things our way, but the Lord sure does look out for those who love Him and serve Him with all their heart. There are benefits in living for God.
  • Don't be angry with God over the trials that come your way.

God is the very one who can and will help you through your trials and tribulations. He is the one that can make it better. Don't blame God for the bad things that happen to you. Just go to Him in prayer and know that He is working all things for your good if you are truly living for Him. If you aren't, He may be trying to get your attention. God will do whatever He has to for you to make it. The very trial that has you confused or questioning God may be something that God is going to turn into a blessing even though you cannot see it. "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths." Proverbs 3:5-6 If you keep your mind on the work of God no matter what happens to you, He will do wonderful things for you. That is what will help you make it. The Bible says the just shall live by faith. Faith without works is dead. Things may not look good and the storm may be raging, but make up your mind to keep your focus on God and not on the waves. That is living by faith. Show it in your actions.

  • Are you discouraged? Try encouraging somebody else.
  • Are you confused? Cast all your cares upon Him, for He careth for you.
  • Are your friends and family leaving you? Go teach somebody a Bible study.
  • Are you sick? Tell someone about Jesus who still heals and saves.
  • Are you lonely? Find a young person to befriend who's parents are getting divorced.
  • Are you suffering loss? GIVE. Give of your time to God and His work...

And watch what He does.

Keep your eyes on Jesus! That's when you'll be able to walk on the water. Make up your mind: I will not base my faithfulness to God off of life's circumstances.


Hanna K. said...

Jen, that is soooo true. I've learned from experience that when things get real rough, and life just gets complicated, HELP SOMEONE IN NEED! It really works---we get our eyes off us and all the PROBLEMS (which I find are half imagined and conjurred up by our own frequently idle minds)and we get our mind on JESUS and things start working themselves out (of course, with God's divine hand putting it all together). Thank you Jen for a, once again, insightful, wise, and much needed post! Love YOU, kindred!

Jennifer Connell said...

You're right! Cause we're kindred! lol It always feels good to focus on somebody elses needs. It's rewarding and fulfilling. Thanks for the lovely comment! I love YOU too!! Talk to you reeeeal soon.

P.S. I miss you. :(

Anonymous said...

What an awesome and well-thought out post. It's so true; we just need to take our focus off ourselves and help others that need someone to be there to comfort them and help them. You are so amazing Jen!! I love you bunches of carrots! :)

Love you,
Your little Bunny :)

Jennifer Connell said...

Bunny! Thank you so much! I love you lots of lettuce! hahaha!