Good morning, friends!
I’m excited to share with you today and to hear the Father’s heart together. As I mentioned last week, I’m sensing God has some specific, strategic things for us this month. I’m not sure why this month is different, but if your life is anything like mine, everything since the holidays is a bit of a blur. To say we’ve faced some challenges would be quite an understatement. I’ve been living once again in survival mode, buried with busyness, carrying the weight of grief and tragedy, dealing wiith physical illness and challenges, and the list goes on! I share this not to get your pity, but hopefully so you know I can relate to the things you’ve probably been facing in your own life.
Like Phil the Groundhog, it seems like the past few months I’ve been hibernating in some dark places, longing to poke my head out, see the light and feel the sun. If you are in a similar place, I want to encourage you that things are getting brighter. It doesn’t mean the pain of the past or our fear for the future will just disappear, but it does mean that moments of joy, hope and progress are on the horizon.
What’s the secret to seeing and moving beyond our present feelings and circumstances? I believe Holy Spirit has a strategic answer for us today: coming out of of dark place and into a new season of life and light requires intentionality; in other words, it won’t just happen.
In fact, it’s often easier to stay where we are, finding comfort in habits and patterns that are familiar, that allow us to avoid pain or disappointment. But to move beyond where we are and on to something different, most likely, we will have to intentionally change some things.
For one, we may have to intentionally change the way we think. Maybe we need to start looking for the good, hoping for something better, dreaming for something bigger. And this can be very difficult at times.
Perhaps a good place to start is Hebrews 11:1: Now faith brings our hopes into reality and becomes the foundation needed to acquire the things we long for. It is all the evidence required to prove what is still unseen.
Being intentional requires believing for what is currently unseen. For me, it’s been easy to get caught up in what I see, the disappointment and anxiety of the past few months, the strange goings-on in the world and in our country. It’s all so entangling! Yet, faith gives us the hope we need to believe for something better.
We may have to intentionally change our expectations. It’s subtle, but tough times can make us feel like we are stuck in some sort of cosmic Whack-a-mole! Everytime we poke our head out, something knocks us back down. If we aren’t careful our thinking may get twisted and we begin to think (and even say) things like, “What’s the point of getting our hopes up? It’s all suffering and pain until we get to heaven anyway. Good things never happen for me. It’s probably the end-times anyway, so why dream of a bright future?”
No condemnation here, friends. Just a reminder that in Christ, we can see, think and believe differently than the world…and differently that we did yesterday! In fact, yesterday reminds us that we are completely new creations, with the mind of Christ, seated in heavenly places and joint-heirs with Jesus. We have the ability and power to change course and live the life we want–if we will determine to live with intentional intention.
Listen to some more verses from Hebrews: But we long to see you passionately advance until the end and you find your hope fulfilled. So don’t allow your hearts to grow dull or lose your enthusiasm, but follow the example of those who fully received what God has promised because of their strong faith and patient endurance. (6:11-12) These were the true heroes, commended for their faith, yet they lived in hope without receiving the fullness of what was promised them. But now God has invited us to live in something better than what they had—faith’s fullness! (11:39-40)
I invite you to meditate on these verses this week…maybe even this month. Let these be the light and the lens through which you envision your future. Decide to be intentional in your thoughts, words and expectations this month! I know it may be hard and even painful, but there is tremendous relief and even healing as you bring your thoughts into aligment with God’s promises.
Hope this helps today, friends,