“And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19 ESV or “I can do all things through him (Christ) who gives me strength.” Phil 4:13 ESV.
These two Bible verses are my lifelines. I repeat them, sometimes audibly and sometimes to myself, often and regularly through the day. The truth in these two verses are applicable in any life situation. Things going good? Praise Him! I can do everything because Christ, in me, gives me strength.
Stormy gales blocking the view? Finances tough? Can’t really put a finger on the uneasiness in my heart? Not to worry; God will supply every need according to his riches in Christ Jesus. Can you even imagine the vastness of those riches? Seemingly I cannot, because the riches in Christ Jesus are too much for my finite human brain to comprehend.
I should find assurance that In Christ Jesus there is zero limit to what can be done, but from time to time, I am overwhelmed. So let’s re-visit: God will supply every need…even loneliness, finances, emotional well- being, clothing, school, parenting, marriages, everything. (Some folks might think things like clothing or school is more of a want than a need, but I disagree).
Yes, these two promises from God fulfill every aspect of my life. So why do I tussle? In my heart and head I do believe these scriptures are true and relevant in my life. It’s my thoughts that trip me up. How? Apparently I doubt that God really can help with certain areas in my life. I struggle the most in weight control, emotions and self-discipline. Sure I claim the verses above and I talk to God all day long asking him to make my will power to be strong enough to do what I have resolved to do. These include: losing weight and keeping it off, and yet, I gain weight. I complain about aches and pains and yep, still have aches and pains.
Another example: Discipline. I know I should write. Write for him, spread his word in fiction and non-fiction, yet, my actions, which consist of soliciting advice and counsel of writer friends, shows that I seemingly have more faith in other authors than I do in God. This is not how my heart feels but it is how my life acts.
To be sure, I don’t purposefully draw the curtain over certain areas of my life trying to shield them from Him. He is God and his knowledge of my life is deeper, wider, longer and more thorough than mine. When I don’t act on the promises he’s made or the promises I’ve made to him, I am indeed obstructing him from certain areas of my life. I’m not saying He can’t still work in those areas, just that it is a smoother and less angst filled journey then stumbling over rocks and tripping on the uneven path of doing it on my own. I guess all this to say, I’m determined to remember to APPLY those lifelines to my every day journey and not just think ’em in my head as a sort of rote memory.
Part of my problem is I try to hard to help God out. I tell him my worries, my needs, my wants, but I don’t fully release anything. I grip the corner of the fabric of the issue and hold fast while releasing the rest and saying in essence, “you can handle this much God, but I’m going to have to help you with this much.” Of course in my heart and head, I’m not thinking this way at all. I totally want my all powerful, all knowing, all redemptive, all loving Father to take my problems and do with them what He wants, because He alone knows what’s the best. And the fact that I can sit here and identify the issue is problematic, because I’ve known this for a while and yet the pattern remains.
I have found, however, the following practices somewhat helpful when the curtain starts to fall:
1. Journal regularly. This has proved invaluable with me so that I can go back and see what scriptures have been helpful, and how God has spoken to me in the past. It’s encouraging to see that He has answered and provided for me in the past, and I have hope that he will again.
2. Read the Word. I don’t know how folks can have a strong faith-filled relationship with Him when they don’t really know Him! He’s got a book full of love and letters for us, dig in! (2 Timothy 2:16 15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. (KJV says, “Study to show yourself approved).
3. Pray. Some like to read prayers out of prayer books, or off websites, and this is fine. However, there’s nothing like the gut wrenching, angst filled prayers that come in time of deep need. (Romans 8:26 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.)
4. Do some self-evaluation. Do you know who you are? What your weaknesses are, what your purpose is? Figure it out. Knowing myself, my huge flaws and gaping holes in need of filling, as well as knowing the gifts and talents he’s gifted me with, helps me better serve a hurting world and show Jesus’ grace, mercy and love.
5. Find a trusted friend. A confidante that will not gasp when you show your humanness, but will love you and pray with you and show you direction. There aren’t many Christians out there like that but they do exist. Pray God would show you to one. Got areas of your life you’re not completely trusting Him in or maybe guilty of giving him so extra help? Join me and try a hands off approach for one week. Just trust Him. When you feel like helping out, pull back and give it all to Him…let me know how you go!!!
In His Grace, Mercy and Love LM
By Linda Mae Baldwin | Freelance Writer