To Sum it Up…

I went through our blogs and studies and tried to find statements or thoughts that summed up different truths that we have shared. I thought this might give you something to review now and then. God often speaks to us at different times about different things. Each time I see these reminders, I see them in a new light.

  • We are not our own. We have been bought and our lives belong to God. He has the right to determine how we should live them.
  • We do not deserve good things. We deserve death and punishment. Anything we receive besides that is simply a blessing and a gift.
  • Fear and faith can dwell together. There are two types of fear: the type that keeps us safe, and the type that controls us. We must always be leaning on the perfect love of God that casts out the negative fears, and make sure that we do not allow the positive fears to control us.
  • Nothing belongs to us. If we look at our lives with the idea that everything is a gift from God, we will have a much easier time letting go, when He asks us to.  We need to hold onto His gifts with open hands, not clenched fists. Remember to ask yourself, “Is this mine or His?”
  • Our identity must be found and rooted in Christ alone. If you will first establish who you are in Christ, the roles that you are called to perform and desire to live out, will not be as likely to consume you. They will not be the foundation of your identity but rather, the fulfillment of God’s glorious purposes for your life.
  • While you are waiting, do the next right thing. You don’t need to know how you will get to the finish line. You just need to take one right step after another.
  • The only person you can change is yourself. If you want a different spouse, try being a different spouse. It will transform your marriage.
  • Don’t ask God to make your spouse think, feel, or do something a certain way. Ask God to make your spouse be who God wants him to be. Your idea of “the perfect husband” might change in a month or two, and you’ll be asking all over again. Trust God to know what you really need.
  • Be sure that your anger is righteous. “The difference between righteous and unrighteous indignation is illustrated by asking, ‘Whose honor is being preserved?’  If I am angry because God has been dishonored and that vexes me, I am probably experiencing righteous anger.  If my anger is in the garden variety, ‘I can’t believe you are doing this to me…,’ it is probably unrighteous anger.” – Tedd Tripp in Shepherding a Child’s Heart

 

  • We must base our hope in the unseen. Hope in circumstances is based on a one-dimensional, limited human perspective. There is more beyond what we can see. The ripples of this life affect the forever of glory.
  • “If there were an easier, better, or more painless way for God to accomplish His will in your life, He would certainly do it!”
  • When people aren’t, God is.
  • Your past circumstances and influences are the reason that you react the way that you do, but never an excuse. You must learn to rise above these and become the person that God expects you to be in spite of them.
  • Our initial reactions to problems are usually wrong. We must learn to respond instead of simply react. This comes from feeding our hearts and minds with the truth of God’s Word.
  • As long as we retain our hold on our burdens, God cannot take them. We often go to God, dragging our troubles with us, but instead of leaving them at His feet, we drag them away with us. Even if we do manage to release our death-grip on them and walk away, we often run back to grab them, before we allow them out of our sight. We get upset that God isn’t fixing things or making our fears and frustrations go away, but at the same time, we cannot even see God, due to the bulk we insist on holding. We need to practice “hands-free” living.
  • Don’t wait until you are in the midst of trials to begin preparing for them. On the same token, don’t wait until you receive your desires to begin preparing for them either. Work towards becoming the person that you need to be right now.
  • Remember, we are not home yet. Our final destination is heaven. We aren’t supposed to feel comfortable or feel like we belong. We aren’t usually going to feel like we are where we need to be or want to be. We are only on a journey to our home. Stay on course.
  • “Don’t tell God how big your storm is.  Tell your storm how big your God is.”
  • We almost always act based upon our beliefs. What does the way that I live my life say about my belief in God?
  • God has promised that we will have tribulations, so don’t say “why me?” but rather, say “why not me?”  Perspective is everything.
  • God is a perfect Father.  Very few of us had ideal family situations, growing up.  We must not allow the imperfections of our earthly parents to cast a shadow of doubt upon our Heavenly Father.  We must allow God to re-parent us, and believe that He is exactly Who He says that He is.
  • If the current desire of your heart is based on bitterness, jealousy, and selfishness, you can be sure that it is not of God.  James actually says that it is “demonic.”  Our own way is dangerous.  God’s wisdom is pure, peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial, and sincere.  If the thing you desire to do meets each of these qualifications, you can be sure that God is in it.
  • “Emotions are a see-saw of unpredictable feelings, teetering on the fulcrum of circumstance, which often result in rash and chaotic reactions.” – HMBesser
  • Whenever there seems to be “no reason” for what we are going through, we can rest assured that the main reason for anything we face is to bring glory to God.
  • As we live a life of repetitive discontent, we will find that several dangerous emotions will creep into our heart, and eventually begin to control our actions.

1.  Anger says, “You owe me.”

2.  Guilt says, “I owe you.”

3.  Greed says, “I owe me.”

4.  Jealousy says, “God owes me.”

These are all manifestations of a lack of contentment and thankfulness.

  • What is the most important thing that will be written on your tombstone? The dash between the dates. Everyone’s dash will tell a story.  How did you live your life, and who did you live it for?  How will you be remembered and what legacy did you leave behind?
  • It’s not the ghosts from the past that you need to fear, rather it is the monster that you let out and feed, when no one is watching.
  • I don’t think that God is going to wipe away our memories of earth, along with the tears.  I don’t think it is the circumstances that brought us pain and sorrow, but rather, the perspective that we have in our earthly bodies.  I believe that when we have a heavenly “make over,” our perspectives will be changed as well.
  • Don’t deceive yourself.  Anything can be an idol.  If it takes the place of God’s control over your life, it is an idol. Kill them and replace them!
  • Try to take what others say and do as a reflection upon where they are in their life, not a true reflection upon me, and pray for them. It’s not always easy. They are not in the same place that I am, and maybe God hasn’t dealt with that issue in their life yet, just as I may struggle in an area that God has already perfected in their life. Give grace.
  • When desire is uncontrolled it is never satisfied, requires instant gratification, and can cause us to make bad deals. Desire, when controlled, can drive us to action, keeps hope alive, and is sanctioned by God and fulfilled by His hand.
  • God certainly has the power and ability to change your situation.  But what if He doesn’t? You have two options at this point:

1.  Get angry and allow your heart to harden in bitterness, as you rebel against God’s will for your life.  Continue in discontent, as you stare longingly at what you desire.

2.  Choose joy, peace, and contentment, knowing that God does all things for our good and for His glory…every time.

Try praying, “Dear God, fix this or change my heart.”

  • Do you love God more?
  • It’s never about us. It’s always about Him!
  • We can only love and comfort others to the extent that we have experienced it ourselves.
  • The key is obedience not information. As humans, we usually want to know “why, when, where, how, etc.” However, God doesn’t owe that to us. Often, we wouldn’t understand it anyhow. Practice “going without knowing.”
  • “Our comfort zone is a great place to miss the will of God.” – Dr. David Jeremiah
  • If we never had opposition or trials, most of us would never veer off-course or take any risks.  Sometimes, God has to stir up the cobwebs in our lives to make us “itchy” enough to start cleaning. Change always comes as a result from being uncomfortable in our current condition.
  • Our unbelief is not a reflection or indicator of God’s ability or power.
  • Your “I CAN’T” moment can be a breaking point or a blessing point.
  • Another person can only handle your troubles for a short period. Even the closest of friends and the strongest of families can only share your burden for a limited amount of time. It’s not that they don’t care. It’s not that they don’t want to help. It’s just a matter of fact. Everyone has their own burdens to bear, and no one can possibly walk away from their own life permanently – no matter how much empathy they may have –take on our pain, and see it through from beginning to end. What people can never do, God does in absolute inclusiveness.
  • People just fade in and out of our lives. God puts people into our lives, many times, just for a certain season of it. Instead of grieving the loss of a friend, try to be thankful for the fact they were there, when you needed them most.

 

Original material by Holly M. Besser. Perfect Joy Ministries ©2013. May not be used or re-printed without permission. bsbp09-10-13

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