Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Life is full of Challenges

When golf balls were first manufactured, they made the covers smooth. However, it was then discovered that after a ball had been roughed up, they flew further. So, they started making them with dimpled covers. This is how it is with life, that by going through the challenges of life, we might get roughed up, and we actually become stronger.
Have you ever felt that when you go out into the world, you are like a sheep amongst wolves? You try to be nice, and kind, and loving, and giving, only to find that others take advantage of you, or are unresponsive to your generosity? And this can be frustrating and can get us down.
I know that all too often I focus on the potential rejection and suffering that might come to me, instead of focusing on the protection and provision of God in our lives. The Bible speaks of how when we receive Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we are filled with the Spirit of God, and have the power of God within us, and working for us.
Many times I am asked how I know what to pray. And my answer is always the same: "I don't think about it, I just let the Spirit of God guide my mind and my words and speak through me. It is the same when we are called to go and live through the challenges of life, we need to let the Spirit direct us and speak through us. It is believing that God will provide for you and me what we need in the times that we need it.
Even though the world can seem like a jungle, full of ferocious animals, it is the wisdom, and innocence, and power of God that will protect us and carry us through it all.
But in the midst of it all, we do need to be careful. In the New Testament, Jesus, in Matthew 10:21, gives us a warning about people: "Brother will betray brother...and a father his child, and children will rise against parents." In our world, you have to be careful who you trust and what situations you put yourself in.Again, this comes back to letting the Spirit of God guide your thoughts and your actions.
I urge you to focus,not on the fact that there are challenges and untrustworthy people, but rather that we are called to be "in" this world, and God will guide us in regards to who we can trust, what we should do, and where we should go. Remember, the challenges actually serve a purpose, to make us stronger, and to help us actually make a difference.
Join with me today in giving thanks to God for the challenges we face, and to seek to learn and grow from them! What do you think?