The other day I got bopped. I wasn’t expecting it.
Something that was supposed to happen didn’t, and I felt it left me in a pretty exposed position. I was upset.
Instead of picking myself up, looking toward the Lord and expressing my faith in Him, I looked for someone to blame. Since the Lord was the biggest target around, He caught the brunt of my feelings.
“Here I am serving You, making sacrifices for You and I haven’t griped about a less than perfect situation. Now this?”
I fought against these thoughts but emotion ran high and, well, you know how it is. Outwardly, I didn’t say much, but inwardly I thought, “What are we going to do?”
It wasn’t pretty at first, and then gradually I came around. I began to get control of myself and prayed some weak prayers for help and tried to express my confidence in the Lord. I remembered all that good counsel I give each week to Coffee Stains readers about how they should react.
Knowing what to do is one thing, but it’s a real spiritual and emotional battle to translate that into the battles of our daily life.
Finally, I calmed down and my wife and I prayed about the situation. Then we began to do what we could do to change it and wonder of wonders, in a few hours the problem was solved. (It doesn’t always happen that quickly).
The next morning in my prayer time, I was a bit ashamed as I talked with the Lord. Why isn’t faith and confidence my default mode, instead of, “What are you doing, God!”?
I asked His forgiveness for insulting Him by my unbelieving attitude.
But, you know, I want to go beyond repentance. I want to change. That’s not the way I want to react to adversity. My temporary attitude ran against the grain of all that I deeply believe. Problems bring weaknesses to the surface where we can deal with them. They reveal what’s hiding in us.
I remember a time when I struggled with jealousy. But, if you had asked me before I landed in that situation, I would have most certainly said, “No, I’m not a jealous person.”
So, how do you adjust your attitude, when you find it’s not what it should be?
Admit that your attitude stinks. If we know how we should be, it helps us to adjust ourselves to become like that. Our feelings usually kick and scream at first, but actions are much more important than feelings. If God will help you with your actions, the rest usually falls in line, sooner or later.
Ask God (sincerely) for forgiveness. It’s not one of those, “Tell your sister you’re sorry,” deals. “Lord, forgive me for acting like You don’t exist, like You don’t love me. I know You love me more than anyone in the Universe loves me and that You’ve even working out this situation for my good.”
Then ask for healing. Often, when we don’t measure up to the standard, we ask for forgiveness. But, at the next opportunity we fall in the same way. “Well, I’m just human, you know. Boys, will be boys and none of us are perfect and my daddy was like that and …”
It needs to stop somewhere. Ask God to change you. Ask Him to teach you to change. When you fall repent, get up, but don’t accept failure as okay. It is a battle but winning it is more than worth the effort.
Finally, ask God to fill you with His power. He never meant for you to do this alone. He’ll forgive you, heal you and give you the power to live rightly for Him. You’ll be an agent of healing and salvation for others if you let Him fill you with His Spirit.
Want some medicine to help you get well—and filled? Try these: Luke 24:29; Acts 1:8; and all of Romans 8.
Forgiven, healed and filled, that’s what God wants for you—and me.
“And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you.” (Rom. 8:11, NIV)
“Father, if I look at me I’m scared. If I have to measure up, I’m scared. If I look around me, I’m scared.
So, I look towards You. You’re the only One who can save me from my situations and strengthen me to live, to accomplish what You’ve put in my heart.
I look to You, Father.
In Jesus’ Name…
“Gratitude turns what we have into enough.” (Internet)