Kerrville Daily Times Article
Often times in life, we get so busy we forget the amazing strength and peace that is in us when we have Jesus in our hearts and lives. I have discovered thru hard times, the value of drawing on that strength and peace that is in me because as a little girl, I gave my heart to Jesus. He is the one constant in my life that I can trust with my heart. Walking with God and remembering that all I need is with me has become a well that I continually tap into more and more.
What comes out of you when things get crazy in life? Faith or stress? Life in this world often times interrupts with the unexpected. If we do not have the issue of faith settled, and Christ in our hearts, we are certainly at a disadvantage as we are more likely to be tossed around by circumstances.
I have not always handled the unexpected that easily. Seeing God’s faithfulness to me, when crisis arrived on my door step 4 years ago when my late husband got cancer and died has given me an unshakable confidence in God’s ability to handle the little things as well as big things in my life. Walking with God in that crisis has given me experience that has forever shaped me. This is not a journey I would have chosen but nevertheless, the experience has made me rich and given me tools and a confidence I wouldn’t trade.
II Corinthians 13:5 says, “Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you- unless of course you fail the test? And I would trust that you will discover that we have not failed the test.” (NIV) From this scripture we can conclude that we need to check ourselves frequently and see what is on the inside. Does faith and trust rule your heart and life or do your circumstances?
Several years ago, I worked was working with youth and young adults. We started and ended each day with a chant. The chant ended with a statement that summarizes the above scripture to me. “Check yourself before you wreck yourself.” When I read II Corinthians 13 I was challenged to check myself and make sure faith in Him was ruling my heart. God’s faithfulness to me as a young widow has brought healing to my heart as I’ve learned to depend on Him and look to him for all I need. Fortunately for me, this scripture helped lift me up above the adverse circumstances that could have stolen the joy. II Corinthians 13:11-14 further challenged me by stating, “...aim for perfection, listen to my appeal, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you...May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.” (NIV)
Perfection in this passage means to aim for maturity not being perfect. Do you need to grow up in some areas? Is God challenging you to handle things in a better and more mature way? What comes out of you when life presses in? Bitterness, anger, frustration, or stress? Stress is always an inside job. I think stress is not so much our circumstances but how we look at the situation. Do you have a godly perspective or not? Maybe the adverse circumstances can help you mature in a way you wouldn’t otherwise learn? Don’t waste the opportunity that is yours. Perhaps like me, you need to examine yourself.
Living in the peace he provides takes practice. Keep practicing, and when you fail the test, confess it and get back up.
He absolutely adores and loves you and has provided incredible peace for each of us. It is our choice to tap into that wonderful well of life!
Christ in me gives me lots of faith, hope and peace. Will you join me in regularly checking yourself? Are you remembering that Christ, the living God, is in you if you ask him? The grace He provides along with the love of God and the Holy Spirit are all we will ever need. Check yourself before you wreck yourself!
Kathleen is a native of the Hill Country and is a writer and speaker. She is passionate about helping people discover their value and worth. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit her blog on www.themaxwellminutes.blogspot.com