God, I’m overwhelmed, you pray as the hours go by throughout the night. You know your alarm is set to go off in a few hours, but you haven’t gotten any sleep. You feel too irritable to relax and not worry about what the day has in store. You may be facing hardships right now—and you don’t know how to deal with the anxiety. You may feel that at the end of each day, you got nothing done and feel completely unproductive, even though you were up early and didn’t go to bed until late at night. Perhaps you committed to something that you now feel is too big for you to handle, and you feel fearful.
Whatever situation you find yourself in, you’re now wrestling all night long with the heavy burden with the feelings of failure and regrets. Do you know the way you should turn when you are feeling burdened down by the stresses of life? Don’t search for strength within your own ability. Don’t think, if I just allow myself to wallow in self-pity, I’ll feel better tomorrow. No, my friends. That is not the answer; The answer is in the Lord.
Cry out to Him—if you don’t have it all figure out, that’s okay , God doesn’t tell us to figure it out on our own. God will give you wisdom in that situation that is not only taking all of your time, energy and heart, but He will give you strength to go through. Turn it over to God. Tell Him how overwhelmed you feel. He won’t be disappointed in you. There is no way you could ever disappoint God, He’s omniscient (all knowing) He knows all of your past, present and future mistakes and He still loves you. Tonight, turn to the Father. Run into His loving arms, He is full of love, grace and mercy. Don’t worry Child of God. The Lord is fighting for you. You don’t need to be under the weight of anxiety and depression any longer. You can emerge out of that dark place, encouraged by the goodness and faithfulness of God.
Are you exhausted by the pressures of life right now? Are you overwhelmed from the weight of it all? Rest in Jesus today, He can carry you through.
BUILT TO LAST
Envision a day in your life when you are completely unaffected by what other people say or do. Seems impossible, right? Trust me, I get it. When it comes to being critical of ourselves, we all have an inner critic. The world says that the little voice in your head can actually be helpful in keeping you motivated towards your goals. For the Believer, the Holy Spirit is our voice of conviction and transformation that pushes us towards our purpose and destiny. On the other hand, when the voice you hear is negative and it brings you down this is not God this is the voice of the enemy. Negative self-talk is something we all have experienced, and it creates significant stress and can cause us to become depressed, not only is it harmful to us but to those around us if we are not careful. Here’s what you need to know: negative self-talk does not only have an effect on your mind, your life, those around you but it also impacts your health.
Negative self-talk can sound like you are just “keeping it real” so you say things like, “I should avoid this because I’m not good at it” or it can sound down right hateful “ and you say things like, “man, I can never do anything right because I’m so stupid.” It may take on the view of just being realistic about a situation. For example, “ I just got a C on this test. I guess I suck at Math” then it escalates into fear, “I’ll probably fail this course and never get my degree.” Being realistic about a situation as it relates to negative self-talk may sound like there is no harm in that but not only are you limiting yourself, you are liming God. Is there any situation that diminishes the power of God to make changes in your life or are you having confidence in your own ability to change?
Because of this, not only can it be extremely frustrating and stressful, but it can hinder your progress. It can affect you in some seriously damaging ways. Study shows that negative self-talk has been linked to mental heath issues. Focusing on negative thoughts leads to decrease motivation and a greater feeling of hopelessness. This type of negative internal dialogue has also been linked to depression so it’s definitely something we need to ask the Holy Spirit to help us with. Those who engage in daily negative self-talk tend to be more stressed out. Partly, because their reality is having an inability to achieve the goals that they set for themselves. This is both due to not seeing God properly and themselves. This means this is due to perception that comes with a behavior (i.e. limited thinking, perfectionism, depression, relationship issues etc.).When your thoughts are negative it influences your mood. Start shifting your perceptive instead of looking at things that are wrong praise God for the things that are good. Say it aloud: “Lord I may not have the money I want to have, but I thank you that I’m not under a bridge.” Lord I may not have what I want to eat, but I thank you that I’m not going hungry.” When praises go up, blessings come down. Combat your negative thoughts with the Word of God. Mediate on that Word until it gets in your spirit.
Do you need God to turn things around in your life?
If so, be thankful.
Thankfulness creates an attitude for God to move on your behalf. It has the power to give you peace in seemingly unsolvable circumstances. When you praise and thank God in the midst of your hardship, He will perform a miracle and turn things around.
In Acts 16 Paul and Silas were unjustly thrown in prison. Their clothes got torn off and they were severely beaten. At midnight Paul and Silas began praying and singing hymns to God. That’s when there was a violent earthquake which shook the foundation of the prison and the doors flew up and their chains loosed. I don’t know what you need God to free you out of today. I have no idea what kind of miracle you need from God, but I know that gratitude is key. Gratitude will release the power of God in your life. Instead of complaining about your problems, praise!!!
I want to challenge you to start praising God in the midst of your hardships. You can express your gratitude to God through singing praises unto Him, through your giving (offering), in payer and in your service. Everything you have is because of God’s grace. He gave you health, the activity of your limbs, roof over your head, food on your table, and so many other things to be thankful for. Thank God for what He’s done in your life. Being thankful isn’t about how you feel—it’s about WHO HE IS!
There have been times in my life when I was faced with challenges the size of giants and I felt like a grasshopper in my own sight. What do you do in circumstances like that? Give up before you even start? Or try to psych yourself up with a mantra like, “you can do anything you put your mind to!” Honestly, that doesn’t work, and to do nothing is paralyzing, so that’s not the solution either.
In Numbers 13, God instructed Moses to send 12 spies to go out and reconnoiter the land of Canaan to see what the land was like and to bring back fruit from the land. The land flowed with milk and honey, but they stated that the people are like giants and the cities are fortified and are very large. Their final analysis was: “we were like grasshoppers in their sight and so were we in our own sight!” At this, the people of Israel wanted to go back to the land of Egypt. How many of us often times want to go backwards? We are looking at our challenges rather than looking at God. The problem wasn’t their challenges, their problem was they weren’t looking to God. God promised to give them the land, but they had to go possess it. We do the same thing: God makes us a promise, but rather than going after it we think God is supposed to just give it to us on a silver platter. It doesn’t work like that. If you want it, you have to go after it. Often times we feel like the 12 spies did, and we become grasshoppers in our own sight.
What are you focused on today? Your challenges or your God? Lift up your eyes today to see the all-powerful, glory and rule and reign of God!
One of the privileges of having a relationship with God is being able to commune with the Holy Spirit— speaking to Him and hearing Him speak back to us. There can be no intimacy with God without spending time in prayer and in His Word. But as easy as it is for Christians to speak to Him many have a hard time hearing His voice speak back to them. Learning to hear the voice of God is crucial in our walk with Him. There isn’t a person reading this blog who couldn’t have their life transformed by drawing closer to God and hearing His voice.
If you are in a difficult situation, one Word from God can give you a total turnaround. If you need wisdom the scripture says if you lack wisdom, ask God who gives to all liberally (James 1:5). It just a matter of hearing His voice and obeying Him. The Lord constantly speaks to us and guides us in the right direction. It’s never God who is not speaking, but it is us who is not hearing. We must hear to the point of obedience, if you do not obey God then you did not “hear” God. We get vast of information pushed to us on a daily basis. We wear masks and gloves because we heard the media tell us that is what we should do to help protect ourselves from the Coronavirus. Likewise, when God speaks to us, we ought to heed to His voice. Most Christians are pleading with God to move on their behalf when the problem is their inability to hear God’s voice. The first thing we need to realize is that God is already speaking and listening to His voice takes focus and time. Most of us have lifestyles that are so busy that it isn’t conducive to hearing God’s voice. During this time of social distancing has been the greatest time for you to seek God and spend time hearing His voice. Take advantage of this time and spend time in His presence. It is in stillness, that we tune our spiritual ears to hear God’s voice. God always speaks in that “still small voice” but often times His voice is drowned out by the noise of our daily lives. Most people are imploring God to speak in this season, when what we need to do is yield ourselves to the Spirit then listen and obey.
LEARNING TO HEAR
The Power And The Necessity Of Hearing
When you prioritize God first in your life your greatest desire is to do His will and advancing His Kingdom, and all your resources are available to Him because you understand that it all belongs to Him anyway. Cattle on a thousand hill belongs to Him (Psalms 50:10). All souls belong to God (Ezekiel 18:4). All silver and gold belong Him (Haggai 2:8). When you show yourself as someone who can be trusted with God’s stuff, God will give you increase. If you are a faithful over a little, He will make you ruler over much (Matthew 25:21-23).
When your priorities are connected to God, and you can be trusted with His resources, God replenishes you with more. The desire to live for “self” is a life that has not died to themselves (Mark 8:34). But, if you have given your life to Christ, denounced yourself, picked up your Cross; you know that your time, talent and treasure belongs to God. You identify with being a servant. Esteeming your brother more highly than yourself (Philippians 2:3) and consider it a joy to lay down your life for the sake of the Gospel. Answer these questions honestly: Where does God fit in your life? Do you see Him as your rescuer, or do you see Him as King? You will never experience the power of God working in your life unit you come to the place of decision that you are willing to forsake all for the sake of the Cross—no matter what.
PRIORITIZING YOUR SPIRIT: SPIRIT FIRST
God wants us to have a grateful spirit no matter what is going in our lives. Even in the midst of a painful situation or financial hardships, we can always rejoice and thank Him for our salvation, His faithfulness and His grace towards us. Giving God thanks is rejoicing even in the midst of our suffering. Although the pain may be penetrating so deep that we cannot express in words, we can choose to express thankfulness with our mouths until it becomes a reality in our hearts.
Gratitude to God in difficult times gives our witness a greater impact. Our painful experiences and thankful response allow us to help those who are hurting in their own personal lives. By sharing our struggles with others, our witness becomes more impactful. Gratitude replaces anxiety with God’s peace. We may still have to endure the pain, but we’re transforming on the inside. This kind of peace is only available to those who have a personal relationship with God. Although we may fall into depression, we don’t have to stay in that state. If we keep speaking God’s Word and giving God thanks unto His name, His peace will guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:6-7). Another thing gratefulness does is shifts our attention off our circumstances onto God. If we fixed our eyes on the hardship, the pain becomes unbearable, we cannot abide in peace, and the situation seems hopeless. But gratefulness shifts our focus from the problem to the problem solver. The Bible teaches in Ephesians 5:20 that we are to “thank God for all things.” We can thank Him for whatever He allows in our lives because it was according to His sovereign will, knowing that He promises to work all things out for the good for those who love Him and are the called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28). We won’t always know immediately what God is doing, but just trust Him and surrender to His perfect plan.