Do you struggle with trying to determine the future, so you can make all the right choices? I do too. I know what it’s like to want to know the outcome before the beginning. I imagine some of you feel stuck when you can’t tell what’s right ahead. God calls us to trust Him more than trust our own instinct. There’s a reason Jesus calls disciples to follow him. He knows where he’s going, and better yet, he knows where to lead us where we are going. You’re going to want to listen to this one twice. Sometimes we need to heed God’s wisdom in the direction of our life, rather than make all of our own decisions.
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We get ourselves into a trap of pleasing others, which eventually makes us compromise our integrity, or sell out, or miss the goals we want to achieve. It’s easy to become a people pleaser if we remain obsessed with what people think about us. But when we embrace the identity that God gives us in Christ, we can live into the beloved child of God that He created. You choose. Keep people pleasing and feel empty, or be a God-pleaser and feel complete.
Apostle Paul tells us we aren’t good enough, in fact, he says, “all have sinned and fall short of the perfection of God.” Bummer. What does this do to your soul? When we live in a world of trying to be good enough, and we just can’t measure up, we have to submit to “someone” else being good enough for us. Jesus Christ is our salvation. God has called us to know him through faith in the perfect righteousness of Jesus, alone. That’s it. That’s all it takes to be good… having faith in the one who is perfect.
God doesn’t exist to serve us, we exist to serve God. God is not a short-order cook, granting our every wish. God is more sovereign, more good, more loving and His ways are higher than our ways. When we begin to understand that God’s love will never fail, and God’s presence is always with us, we learn to trust in His glorious power and sovereign will for our lives. Don’t let circumstances sway your view of a Holy God.
We are born with a sinful, selfish mindset… Me first. It takes a relationship with God, through Jesus, to be more generous and giving in life. When you encounter the living God, you grow in faith and in awareness of others, so much so, that you want to give to others, more than receive from them. What kind of mindset do you have? Are you stingy and selfish, or thoughtful and generous with your giving? We want to grow in God and become generous like his Son, Jesus Christ. This happens when we let the Spirit of God lead our lives and lean more into Godly living.
Samson was a wild man, who was given the power of the Holy Spirit to accomplish various tasks for the Lord over the people of Israel, but he certainly wasn’t a man to emulate your life after. He struggled with issues many of us struggle with today; ego, lust, power, and difficulty with intimate relationships, among other things. We look at the life of Samson so that we can understand where our strength resides. I wonder if you are self aware enough to know what could bring you down? What are the issues in your life that draw you away from God, rather than draw you towards God? Can you determine the strength of God in your life, or do you succumb to weaknesses all the time? Find out with us, where your strength can reside, with God.
Like King Herod, at the birth of Jesus, we resist the Kingdom of God breaking into our world. Sometimes people forget that God doesn’t come into our world like a tyrant and terrorist, but rather God comes near as a offering of peace, like a little child. God’s Kingdom is breaking into this dark world to take over your kingdom of selfishness and pride. Is it possible that we act like King Herod in our resistance to God’s Kingdom also? We need to be like the wisemen who came seeking proximity to Jesus, bringing gifts of worship to the Savior. We all, like King Herod, have gone astray, but God has come for us like only the Missionary God can.