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Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Completely overwhelmed

That's the answer I seem to get from a lot of people lately when I ask how they are feeling. For most, it is the constant dreary news we hear from our economy that has them burdened. For others, it's some combination of poor health, crazy schedules, high demands or consequences from poor choices. The great tragedy with all this is that it's nowhere near what God wanted us to experience in our lives. Don't get me wrong, the Bible is clear that God knew we would have troubles in this world. But I don't think that God intended us to live out the "Eeyore" principle while we walked this earth. You know, "Woe is me, nobody likes the donkey"...the miserable, yet lovable, creature from the Winnie-the-Pooh stories by A.A. Milne.

God's word tells us over and over again that He wants something much better for us.

I have come that they might have life, and have it to the full. John 10:10

...for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. 1 John 5:4

More than just a promise of something fantastic that awaits us in Heaven, I think God wants us to taste that "full life" now as He guides us through difficulty and allows us to experience His constant presence. No, you won't live a carefree life. But God does promise that we can bring our anxieties to him because He cares for us (1 Peter 5:7).

Our problem is that we know the obvious things we must do, we just choose not to do them. We know that God's Word transforms us but most of us never take the time to read it. We know that prayer is a direct conversation with our Creator but our times with Him are infrequent at best. We know the good things to choose and we know the selfish things that tempt us. For most of us, though, our pursuits are about us and our comfort rather than the good that God would have us pursue. Yet, we are surprised when life gets overwhelming or despair seems to consume us.

Rather than give in to the status quo of the day, we must choose to embrace the promises of God that help us rise above gloomy economic news, ward off the high demands of our culture and make the wise choices that honor God. That is the lifestyle that brings us the freedom that God desires for us.

For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say "No" to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age. Titus 2:11-12

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