“I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.” Jeremiah 29:11 (The Message)
If I were sitting with the woman on Facebook who had given up hope that life could get better, I would start by saying, “I understand how you’re feeling because I too have felt that way before.”
However, there is hope for every single person. God loves each one of us on this earth so much. When He created each one of us, He created a purpose and a plan in each of our DNA. And those plans are for good, not for evil. Whether or not you choose to love God back doesn’t matter. He still loves you. However, there is a choice that every single one of us need to make. And that is whether or not we want to do life His way, with Him in charge or if we want to continue to cut Him out of our lives and do life our own way, without His guidance or help. Because, in order for the good talked about previously, the good coming from evil, we need His help for that to happen. We need to make that first crucial choice to let God have full control over our lives. Another way of saying it is to choose a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. While that is the best decision anyone can ever make, it’s also a scary decision for those who like to be in control. But it starts with a choice.
Once we choose to do life His way, I would encourage that woman to buckle her seatbelt because while it’s going to be quite the adventure, it’s one we will look back on and be glad we took. Many times, this is when the fun starts because once we’ve given God full control of our lives, He’s ready to start renovating. Sometimes it’s a complete overhaul that is needed, other times it’s just freshening up the paint, ripping out some stained carpet or installing new light fixtures. But there will always be change that takes place because our old sinful lifestyle is being replaced by a new, fresher version that looks more and more like Jesus Himself. While this process can be difficult and painful and look nothing like one imagined, it’s also exciting and full of hope and at times, God’s peace too, when we stop fighting the repairs and instead surrender to the process.
Life as a Christ follower is about letting go of control and fully relying on God to do what He does best – change us to look more and more like Jesus Christ did when He walked the earth. It’s about giving up our selfish nature (everyone has one) and becoming more like Christ. Putting others’ first. Forgiving. Loving those who you might not like very much. And more…
Each renovation is going to look as different as we all are individually. God isn’t a “one size fits all” God. He is personal, intimate, relationship oriented. He wants to take our personalities and gifts and talents and strengths and even our weaknesses and mold them into His purpose and plan for our lives.
And… when we allow Him to do the hard work, then we are allowing the good to come out of the evil. Then we are giving Him full control over our circumstances and we start to see clearly from the correct perspective, the faith perspective.
God loves when we choose faith, when we trust Him to do what He does best. He is great at taking what we give Him (our entire lives, messes and all) and then listening and obeying His instructions so that we can become the people He created us to be.
Is it easy? Nope. But is it necessary? Yes. God is pleased when we apply the faith perspective to our lives. Come back next time and I will share ways that God took some uncertainty in our lives and showed me the good.
© Cheri Swalwell 2018