All things work for good, for those that love the Lord. This is so true. But when things go wrong its easy to forget that God is faithful and question everything – why am I here in this position; why did I think I could do this; did I really hear from God; I should change something; is this the Lords will for me; I’m not hearing from God anymore; the questions and doubt just don’t go away.
Many times we even forget that God is “100% faithful”, has promised to be with us til the end of the ages, that He always listens to us, always has great plans for us….
However, our human motivations when in trouble are very simple… I just need to get out of this situation..now!!!! That’s not always best… As a consequence, sometimes we change our decision making process from long term to short term, and guess what, we start experiencing short term benefits instead of those long term intentions. This is the slippery slope to a common type of confusion and firefighting that can last for years.
“Things go wrong. Don’t take it personally”.
That was two very easy-to-say comments, but its true, you simply should not take things personally when they go wrong. There’s very good reasons why you shouldn’t. The first is because you must always take “responsibility” but never take it personally. Now, taking responsibility is completely different from blame. Blame is condemnation, never “accept” blame from anyone. Why? Taking things personally/taking blame involves pride and ego, theirs and yours. And making decisions influenced by pride and ego only leads to more trouble, much bigger trouble.
Sometimes, people around you may try to ensure you never forget your mistakes. That’s the condemnation crowd. Simply ignore them. Yes, simply ignore. Instead take responsibility and come up with ways to correct the problem and restore the situation. The bible tells us a “righteous man falls and rises up again”. The bit I like is this, the verse didn’t say a sinner falls, it said the righteous falls and rises. Wow, God isn’t shocked by our mistakes, he wants to see us rise up again. That gives me confidence that it’s totally worth believing even when things are going wrong!!!
Things go right when we make decisions to put God at the centre of everything. What can things going right look like? A simple example. I had a cist on my scalp for as long as I could remember, my doctor had told me its benign and I should do nothing. One day a friend noticed the bump and asked the obvious questions. I recounted my doctors advice. My friend, a nurse, then explained that cists can contain poison at their centre and if ruptured will cause serious damage, death even.
I immediately arranged for the cist to be removed with a specialist. Before the op however, whenever I told someone I’m having an operation they showered me with sympathy. Even when I explained it was nothing bad. They didn’t understand why I was fine about it, that removing the cist was very good news for me. This is something going right but interpreted as something bad!!! Be careful. We need to understand the journey our decisions take us on and don’t get caught up accepting sympathy when in fact, the scalpel/tests/trials are good news for us.
Our pasts are littered with decisions – good ones, poor ones, some we’re proud of, others well, let’s not dwell on it. I had a difficult time understanding that incident between Peter and Jesus after the resurrection…why did God allow that to be written in the bible and available for us to read 2000+ years later, imagine, every generation of Christians are learning about Peters’ denial.
I came to realise something special, do we remember Peter more for that mistake or for those great words, “on this rock I will build my church”? So no matter what your past, Jesus has spoken great words over your life. Those words are waiting for your response, like Peter on the day of pentecost, his response was not based on his failing but his rising…a righteous man rising…
Base all decisions on the actual circumstances (facts) and faith. Facts exists and can be proven, whereas faith is your belief that a new positive fact will occur in the future. When things go wrong, we can let our minds run riot, thinking up all sorts of things, that seem real, but are all fictional. Consider this, unless someone is going to die from something going wrong, everything else can be put right.
However, like Peter its within us to change how we respond. Keep believing that things can work out for the best and never, never, ever again allow your past to determine your future. Yesterday is a fact, tomorrow and the future is entirely up to “your faith”.