Saturday, September 1, 2012

Are you praying or complaining? By Nina Keegan Owens

I know some people, christian people, that just can't seem to get it all together. They are endlessly complaining, and eternally battling something. For some it's never getting ahead in their finances, for others, they are constantly angry and upset and easily offended over every little thing. We all know them, the people who are never happy and have a string of continued complaints that could circle the globe a few dozen times. The ones that constantly feel jipped and overlooked by God. They act like He doles out scads of blessings to everyone else and purposefully passes over them. They fervently feel like the last kid picked to be on the elementary school dodge ball team during gym class.
You know those certain individuals, that when you happen to see them on the street or spy their number on your caller ID, your heart just sinks. You think to yourself, I hope they didn't see me or you talk yourself out of answering their exasperating call. You may all be shocked at my honesty, but you know you are all thinking of those exact senerios you've fallen victim to in your own lives at one point or another. Or just maybe, you yourself, are wondering if you are guilty of being one of those continued complaining perpetrators.

Sometimes we start feeling selfish because we did not want to listen again to those same old rants of negativity we've heard way to many times before. We dodge them like the a speeding bullet. We certainly don't want them putting any rotten apples into our shiny new apple cart! After all, we are having a great day and we selfishly do not want or need any negativity entering our minds and tainting our pleasant afternoons!

Well, what you do not realize, is that it was probably not by accident that you were put in their paths at that exact same moment. It was not a random happenstance that you were at home when they had phoned you. Perhaps in these situations God is trying to use us to be a blessing to someone else and to help change their negative mindset. Maybe, we just need to come up a little higher, take some time to cast some positive light on to others and their unfavorable circumstances. God uses us and gives us these assignments and missions to speak some positivity and hope into other's weaknesses. We need to unselfishly lend an ear and give ourselves over to the work God has for us to do. We may be the only opportunity they ever get to hear a positive word spoken over them. We should never miss a God appointed chance to be a blessing to someone else.

(1 Peter 4:10)
As each has received a gift, employ it in serving others, as good managers of the grace of God in its various forms.

Why are all Christians living so differently if we all can have,
be, experience, and live in God's best?Why are we still not seeing our blessings, counting them repeatedly and being ever thankful for His amazing promises?

The difference is the choices we as individuals make each day. When you go before God in prayer, are you praying or complaining? Do you spend your precious time whining over how unfair your life is? Are you jealous and contrite about your neighbors being so blessed while explaining to God that they are not even as Christian like as you are? Well, if that sounds familiar, you need to lay it all down and stop wanting what everyone else has. You need to stop telling God, your creator how to do His job, and start focusing on the many wonderful blessings you do have. I guarantee you there are always neighbors looking over your fence wanting what you have too.

You need to decide right now that you will be happy today, tomorrow and everyday of your life whether or not you ever get another blessing or see another prayer answered. We need to be faithful and thankful for everything we do have and count our blessings daily and at the very least, another 100 times per day.
You can choose to pray for the Lord to handle your issues as He sees fit and in His perfect timing. Turn it all over to Him, cast all your burdens on to the Lord and trust in His enduring love for us all. Trust that His son already paid the ultimate price for us to live wholely and victoriously. Then, know He has heard you and every last, drawn out prayer you've prayed. Then go about enjoying your day. Get your mind off of yourself and your problems and go be a welcomed ray of happiness in someone elses day.

(Luke 12:48)
But the one who does not know and does things deserving punishment will be beaten with few blows. From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.

We have all heard that verse from Luke. Summed up, it simply means, to whom much is given, much is required.
This is not solely talking about monetary gifts, but the gifts of the heart. As a Christian, you have been given many gifts, a new life to enjoy, amazing peace, and unbridled joy. You can dwell in the gifts of complete and utter safety. You have amazing compassion and are expected to be kind, helping, caring, and giving. When you begin to get your mind off of yourself, and set about using these many new gifts you've received through salvation, you will begin a new life of living of victoriously reguardless of your circumstances. You will be an amazing presence of hope to others who are suffering.

(Matthew 16:24-25)"Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it."

Stop living in the flesh! The Bible says we need to die to our flesh and all its woes and anger, complaining and fear, and live in the light! In order to be living in God's will, we need to be out of our own. We have already tried it our own way and failed. We need to stop trying to tell God what to do and how to do it. It's offensive to Him when we think we can do His job more remarkably than Him. Yet, this is what we do every time we choose to go it alone, and not listen to and follow the plan of our creator. When we complain, we remain!

If our goal is to be in God's will all the time. We need to go through some processes to purge ourselves of pride, self-will, selfishness, self-esteem, and all the other things that cause us to think about ourselves first and God second. Those processes will continually lead us on a journey that will involve a certain humility, strengthening of our faith, and will ultimately result in holiness, blessings and a life of unspeakable joy. God makes no mistakes, He has very specific reasons why you are where you are in your life right now. Learn what it is that He expects of you. Change your attitude, live a 'what can I do to help others?' kind of life. When you shift your mindset from yourself to the blessing of others, you will rise up and be blessed in every area of your own life. You are the one that places the shackles on your own feet, and you are the one that holds the key.

I love the lyrics to an Irving Berlin song from the 1954 movie, White Christmas.
Bing Crosby beautifully sings these words, "When you're tired and you can't sleep, count your blessings instead of sheep and you'll fall asleep counting your blessings......."

Thank you Father as we take time today to count our blessings. Thank you for loving us and giving us repeated chances to forget the crazy lives we live and just follow you and your peace. Let us never miss a chance to bless someone through you and may we continually have a grateful heart reguardless of our circumstances!! We praise you, in Jesus name!

No comments:

Post a Comment