I’m sure if you’ve been living longer than two weeks on this earth you’ve probably figured out that life isn’t easy. Here’s the part that I’m sure that you have figured out- I don’t think it is supposed to be. Somehow, God has set up this world in a way that it always seems to bring some sort of problem.
Money problems. Relationship problems. Situational problems. They are everywhere you turn. You could have a job one day, and the next day be fired. Car could be running well, and then, boom, engine goes out. No rhyme or reason, it just happens.
But here’s the interesting part, you can’t change what happens in your life, but you can change how you react to it. Yes, it may seem odd as if somehow you can just magically flip the switch, but the truth is, I believe it. I believe that you can change the way that you react to the things in your life that you cannot control.
Here’s what you do- the next time that something happens in your life that bothers you, something that you cannot control take these steps.
1. Realize that there is something in your life that is wrong.
2. Think about the most appropriate way that you could respond.
3. Pray and ask God to help you respond that way.
4. If no results, repeat steps 2 and 3 until it changes.
Easy to understand, hard to apply, but the truth is that if you make it a point to choose your response in the situation, you will find that the situations that you go through in your life will be less stressful. The situation may not change but the way you are reacting to them will.
It’s Not the End of the World
Hey there folks.
Well, its been a pretty long while since I have taken the time to write a blog. I know, no excuses, and the truth is that I don’t have any excuses, except one, and maybe it is an excuse- I just didn’t feel like writing it.
Life has been pretty busy for me this year so far, and I have struggled to find the energy to find a nice quip or story to inspire and wow the masses. Sure, I could have been writing a bunch of blog entries that had the negative stuff that had been going in my life alongside the positive stuff, but this is the victory blog, not the listen to Matt complain blog. Sure, I understand that you should share the good with the bad, but I don’t like to do that online.
So what’s the first Victory for you on this new blog? If there are things in your life that are superfluous (not needed or required) don’t have one ounce of guilt for not doing them. That my friend is called prioritization. Its what people do that are really effective in their lives, they cut out the stuff they don’t want to do, or the stuff they don’t have to do, and fill it with stuff that they want to do, or stuff that should be doing.
I’ve been doing a lot of stuff that I should be doing. Not slacking, working. But the truth is that I have been missing the blog.
Here’s nugget for you today- only do what you have to today. Don’t do anything that you don’t want to (that you don’t have to) there is a certain power with choosing to not do something. Typically, when you come back to it, you will find that it is more joyful and you will be more productive with it because you didn’t force yourself to do past where it was enjoyable.
Be blessed, do less
There is a morning routine in our house. I’m sure there is one in yours also. Ours consists of prayer, coffee, cuddling, and blog writing on the laptop. We attempt to get the kids in and out of shower, fed, chores done, and ready for the school day. Its a process, that’s for sure. The order of getting up in our house is usually Me, Crystal, Faith, and then Mr. Gabe.
Lately I’ve been going down to my office to write my blog because there are less distractions upstairs, but this morning I decided to sit in the living room.
This morning, when Faith got up, she was sitting on the couch, wrapped up in a blanket and wanted some breakfast. She wanted bagels with some cream cheese on them. She got them, and sat on the couch, and began to eat.
I don’t like kids sitting on couches eating anything. Especially not something creamy and sticky like cream cheese.
Gabe got up, came into the room and almost immediately commented that Faith was sitting on the couch eating, and he wasn’t allowed to sit on the couch and eat. Out comes the famous sibling words- “its not fair”. “why does SHE get to eat on the couch when I have sit at the TABLE”?
Then begins the process of convincing Mom and Dad all the reasons why sister should get off the couch and get at the table. From his perspective, the only viable outcome was that since he was unable to sit on the couch and eat, she shouldn’t be able to sit on the couch and eat. It has to be fair.
Or does it?
I wonder what the conversation would have been like if He would have praised her for getting the special treatment and encouraging her to lavish in the opportunity to eat on the couch. Instead of trying to bring her away from what she was enjoying, to where he was where he wasn’t enjoying himself, maybe he could have just said nothing and later regaled in the story of how they “got one over” on the ‘rents and partook of the bagels on the comfy couch.
You and I know that rarely happens. With kids, or with adults, people always want things even. At work, at school, at home. Big or small, if there is any inclination that someone is getting even the slightest edge over us, we want to make sure that the treatment is equal and the same. No one should be able to do or have something that I am not able to do or have.
But here’s the flip side- would my son have voluntarily removed himself from the couch for the sake of fairness? Or would he have been on the other side, declaring his right to sit on the couch?
What’s my point today? People want judgement for others, and mercy for themselves and it starts as a child. However big or small, people are very keen seeing their own disadvantage and someone else’s advantage, but not so much when the roles are reversed.
So what to do? Give other people the same level of grace and mercy you would want for yourself. In a real world application that would mean not reporting your co-worker who showed up to work 5 mins late when you did the same thing last week. It would mean not expecting more out of your spouse than what you expect out of yourself. It would mean when someone wrongs you, to extend the same grace that you would want if you had wronged someone else.
Its not easy, but I believe its what God calls us to do- Matthew 6:15 If you do not forgive others their sins, your father will not forgive your sins.
Chew on that today- toss out some mercy to someone and see how it works.