I got out of bed this morning and looked out the window and it was raining again … or still. It is hard to remember as it seems every day is the same. A faint promise of sunshine early in the morning only to be killed by the clouds coming in from where they were hiding just beyond my view. The dreaded gloom moves in with the rain and I pulled the curtains tightly shut so I can’t see the rain … as though not seeing it would make it gone. Vain imaginations. I am that rabbit, sitting in the shade and for some reason unable to hop over there into the sunshine.
It is my paradise lost that I mourn for, only to me it is my desert lost. Raised and living 40 plus years in the dry Mojave desert of Southern California has given me an undying affinity for dryness and sunshine and a misunderstood disparaging for rain, clouds and lack of sunshine on my face. How did I end up in the land of citrus, grape vineyards and that wide never ending river? I will never fit or be connected to this land and its people.
I sat down at my computer to write and thought about how I felt. I did not want to build tomorrow’s memory on how I felt today. The year and 4 months of my circumstance/trial was behind me and the end was in sight. Now was not the time to falter, doubt or turn back from what I had learned and how far God had brought me.
This trial had started with good intentions as do most journeys but I quickly learned the truth of Proverbs 16:9 “The mind of man plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps.” And so it was with me … but I can’t say that God hasn’t used this journey to really teach me a lot of things I needed to learn … but could there have been a better way? Probably not since God knows our every thought and move since before we even “were”. There is a reason why God tells us to take our thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5) because every action has a starting place in our mind. The problem always starts in our mind and usually from a promise that we were anxious to take possession of that got delayed and we grew impatient.
So often we have a promise that has been given us by God in words in our spirit, by prophecy or directly from His Word. The Bible is filled with promises that can be applied to our lives because God is consistent through the ages in His love and desire for us to prosper and have joy. The promise is secure. God does not lie. The issue that causes us anxiety and worry is always the process it takes, what we call a trial. The path that God takes us on to the promise is the problem for us.
A circumstance that blocks us from our promise is the problem but also what God is using for the process. It is always about increasing our confidence, our trust and belief in God; our ability to stand in the trial with peace and find rest in God; our patience, faith, hope, and joy; learning to see God in our circumstance and with praise and thanksgiving hold onto Him. His word is the anchor point for the process or trial and He puts out His hand to help us through it.
Focusing on the trial we’re facing doesn’t change the nature of the trial itself or the process God is using. Focusing on it often brings in negativity, anxiety and angry emotions that aren’t in the Spirit that we should be pursuing. The focus needs to be “What does this mean?” and “What should we do?” Asking these questions opens us to allow God to empower us as to the outcome of our circumstances.
After months of fighting it, trying to figure it on my own I finally got it and I said OK Lord what should I do while I wait. Learn to change the problems into possibilities and peace and joy comes. A big circumstance like mine holds many little irritating problems along the way. Take each one and make it into a possibility and it vanishes and you are happy. I tried it and it works. Even the big problem, the circumstance itself can be handled like that by saying, it will turn into the possibility God has already given me in the life my promise is bringing! Yeah.
Focusing upon the outcome (the promise) at the beginning of a situation fixes our hearts on God. It becomes real to us, more real than whatever problem has arisen in our lives and it brings in our joy. We put ourselves into the promise, we speak out the promise, we claim it and live as though it was in our hand and adversity has to flee. We don’t entertain any negative thoughts or any outcome except the promise God has given us His word on. The enemy will finally lighten up and your power against him grows with Christ in you leading the way.
When God’s outcome for us is more real than the adversity we face, we’ve already defeated it. Remember: every problem that we face isn’t about the trial and it isn’t about the problem. It’s about the relationship that we have and the relationship that we want with God and even more the relationship He wants with us
What is impossible for man is possible with God. In Christ, we are encouraged to explore a life beyond a logical thought process. “God is able to do exceedingly, abundantly beyond all that we could ask or even think, according to the power that works in us.” Ephesians 3:20 Nothing has come our way that God has not provided a way out of. God sees the answer as already having happened. In God’s book it has already been accomplished. When He gives you a promise, He has already settled the issue of how it will work out so we are just saying yes in our heart to hope. Yes I have reason to hope and praise because it is already done. It is a settled issue and it is going to birth in me through praise. Nothing will come that He has not already planned the breakthrough for.
I have been through each step of what I’ve written here with God and more. Writing it all out here is prophesying into my own life and I know the memory for my tomorrow will be of joy, love, faith and strong hope as I continue to hold God’s hand and wait on His directing. It won’t be clouds and rain and cold weather that makes my memory, the Christ that lives in me taking my hand and leading me to a joy-filled tomorrow because of the promise He has given me that He will fulfill – I have His Word on it. “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11