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For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7, NLT
Your fears can be healed by this text. It tells us, first, that fear is overcome by power. What power? There is only one force more powerful than fear, and that is faith. When fear comes to your mind, counter it with an affirmation of faith.
Second, love overcomes fear. By love is meant trust, confidence, complete dependence upon God. Practice this attitude and fear will diminish.
The third element is to attain a sound mind in which there are no complexes, quirks, and obsessions. Live with the thought of God, and you will develop a sound mind where no shadowy fear can lurk.
Whenever you are afraid, verbalize against the thing that you fear, using the words of this text.
~ ~ Norman Vincent Peale
Mr. Peale uses the term from the King James Version “a sound mind”. I have chosen the New Living Translation of “self-discipline. I like it because it implies action. That we should actively encounter fear – with God’s power and love. That we should actively control our own behaviors so that we don’t have need to fear.
Bottom line: God never meant for us to live in fear but faith in him, trusting him and ultimately taking responsibility for our own actions.
What is discipline? What does discipline do? We gain strength against the enemy with discipline – self-discipline that helps us to act with self-control.
Reflect: Do you conquer your fears with the power of faith, with trust in Gods’ love? How well do you self-discipline, or control you mind to not let fear overwhelm you?
|CS Lewis||God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing.|
|Francois Fenelon||Peace does not dwell in outward things, but within the soul; we may preserve it in the midst of the bitterest pain, if our will remains firm and submissive. Peace in this life springs from acquiescence to, not in an exemption from, suffering.|
|Robert J Sawyer||“Learning to ignore things is one of the great paths to inner peace.”|
|Joel Osteen||“God wants you to have a good life, a life filled with love, joy, peace, and fulfillment. That doesn’t mean it will always be easy, but it does mean that it will always be good.”|
|Joyce Meyer||Many people feel so pressured by the expectations of others that it causes them to be frustrated, miserable and confused about what they should do. But there is a way to live a simple, joy-filled, peaceful life, and the key is learning how to be led by the Holy Spirit, not the traditions or expectations of man.|
|Norman Vincent Peale||Be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind. Talk health, happiness, and prosperity to every person you meet. Make all your friends feel there is something special in them. Look at the sunny side of everything. Think only the best, be as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own.|
|Francois Fenelon||Resign every forbidden joy; restrain every wish that is not referred to God’s will; banish all eager desires, all anxiety; desire only the will of God; seek him alone and supremely, and you will find peace.|
|Thomas Watson||God sweetens outward pain with inward peace|
|Joel Osteen||“It’s vital that you accept yourself and learn to be happy with who God made you to be. If you want to truly enjoy your life, you must be at peace with yourself.”|
|Joyce Meyer||“ We don’t have to work at trying to get rid of every stressful situation. We need to learn how to embrace peace. ”|
|Norman Vincent Peale||“I truly believe that if we keep telling the Christmas story, singing the Christmas songs, and living the Christmas spirit, we can bring joy and happiness and peace to this world.”|
Often you hear people talking about Christmas it’s the magic of miracles. It’s a reminder of a time long ago when all was right in the world. The Christmas season is often portrayed as a magical time where anything can happen. So if Christmas’ magic could change lives what would change? What miracle would we want? What are the deepest desires of our hearts?
A few of the most common themes of Christmas magic include:
- Finding a soul mate
- Healing rift between friends
- To have an estranged spouse come home
- Physical and mental healing
- Financial peace
- Peace of mind
- Business success
- A child in the military to come home for Christmas
- For our dreams to come true
This list could go on and on as every person would have a different answer. But what is the thread that connects these themes?
Everyone has an idea of what life should be like and they believe that this is the one time of the year when prayers are answered, lives are restored, families reconciled and fairy tales comes true. There’s sadness in this season because the magic doesn’t hold up, the season passes and we’re left feeling more broken than before. I know this was true for me for many years. I have watched the Hallmark movies, gazed into the twinkle lights and found my nostalgic past in the beautiful reds and greens. I admit I was one of those who sought Christmases magic in this season. My wish was to find my estranged father of 45 years (read about my Hallmark Christmas).
But how many heartbroken souls are still out there, still waiting. Still watching the movies and hoping that happy ending will be theirs. That they too can have the miracle they’ve been secretly hoping for this Christmas season.
There is a magic in the idea of Christmas but it’s not found in the greenery, twinkle lights or holiday movies. There is a white knight out there that is willing and ready to rescue you and make all your dreams come true. Many celebrate Christmas as the birth of Jesus. But the season isn’t about a little baby but a grown man who fell to earth so that we may be restored. He came to fill our hearts with the magic of a little child.
The real miracle of the season is the miracle that happens in our hearts, the miracle that only Jesus can do. Christmas is about second chances, Jesus died to give us a second chance. It’s about reconciliation to our true father. It’s about letting go wrongs and love each other as Christ did for us.
This Christmas remember the miracle maker and ask him to make a miracle in your heart and mind by restoring and renewing all of you.
If you could have a Hallmark Christmas what would it be?
Next week: Quotes on a peaceful attitude.
We create situations that lead us into being nervous, high-strung and upset but we can also create situations that lead to a peaceful attitude. Peace results from a continuous flow from God through us and then back to God. This is the process for our renewal both mentally and physically. It’s impossible to have peace with an accelerated life because the faster we go the less flow there is from God. He’s not going to try to keep up with your pace. Most people today wouldn’t be comfortable moving at God’s slower pace.
Here are some ideas to help you create a more peaceful attitude:
- Fill your mind with a peaceful experience from your past then make a planned and deliberate excursion there in your mind. (I listen to music I heard on my journey, especially songs that remind me of when I was in the wilderness – deserts and mountains)
- Reduce your life’s tempo or pace. Norman Vincent Peale says that “many people are destroying their physical bodies by this pace, but what is even more tragic, they are tearing their minds and souls to shreds as well.” He wrote this in 1952 and today it’s only gotten worse. (this is a big challenge for me)
- Delegate authority, say no nicely and set up boundaries (another biggie for me, my family doesn’t understand the concept of a shut door)
- Develop the disciplines of silence and solitude
- Learn to live in the now because God only gives us enough grace for today
- Make the decision everyday to rejoice and be glad in that day
- Don’t strive to live without stress but aim to live in peace
- Be selective with how you spend your time and resist the temptation to procrastinate
- Modify your life, find ways to save time, avoid trouble and eliminate distractions
- Listen for the promptings of the Holy Spirit, He will guide you into peace
- Take on unseen partner in all your life’s endeavors – God
When you need peace concerning a decision you need to make try these steps:
- Think of your decision the first way…how do you feel. Is there peace, a knot in your stomach or nothing at all?
- Think of your decision in the alternative way… how do you feel. Is there peace, a knot in your stomach or nothing at all?
- The way you should turn is the way you find peace. If there’s no peace don’t do it, if you’re anxious run the other way, if you feel nothing at all pray asking the Holy Spirit for guidance.
- If you still can’t decide ask God to decide for you. Ask Jesus to create the conditions that either aid in your decision-making or to allow the decision to be made for you.
Many years ago I wanted to move. I found a bigger, warmer house. I loved the house and the price was much cheaper. It seemed to be an easy decision but I had no peace. I didn’t know why but I didn’t feel God in it. I just couldn’t make the decision, I had already made a verbal commitment and as a Christian I felt strongly about keeping my word. I prayed and asked Jesus to cause me to not get the house or I would believe my lack of peace was because of another reason. The next day the owner called and the deal fell through. I was relieved. I wouldn’t use this as your main way of decision-making but the Spirit is there to help in all of your ways and walk.
Practice the discipline of silence. Spend at least 15 minutes of absolute quiet everyday. Don’t talk, write, read, think or anything that engages your mind. Put your mind into neutral and let it coast.
Book on finding peace
The Book of Mayuri: Why We Can’t Have Peace and How We Can Have Peace by Osundara Mayuri
The Way of Serenity by Jonathan Morris
Finding Peace: God’s Promise of Life Free From Regret, Anxiety, and Fear by Charles F Stanley
Bible Verses on Peace
|Philippians 4:6 (ESV)||Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.|
|2 Thessalonians 3:16 (ESV)||Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all.|
|John 16:33 (ESV)||I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”|
|Isaiah 26:3 (ESV)||You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.|
|1 Peter 5:7 (ESV)||Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.|
|Romans 12:18 (ESV)||If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.|
|Matthew 5:9 (ESV)||“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.|
|Hebrews 12:14 (ESV)||Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord.|
|Romans 15:13 (ESV)||May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.|
|1 Corinthians 14:33 (ESV)||For God is not a God of confusion but of peace. As in all the churches of the saints|
|Psalm 4:8 (ESV)||In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.|
|Proverbs 16:7 (ESV)||When a man’s ways please the Lord, he makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.|
|Galatians 5:22 (ESV)||But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness|
|Romans 14:19 (ESV)||So then let us pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding.|
|Colossians 3:15 (ESV)||And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.|
|Isaiah 32:17 (ESV)||And the effect of righteousness will be peace, and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust forever.|
|James 3:18 (ESV)||And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.|
|Philippians 4:7 (ESV)||And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.|
|Romans 5:2 (ESV)||Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.|
|Job 22:21 (ESV)||Agree with God, and be at peace; thereby good will come to you.|
|Isaiah 9:6 (ESV)||and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.|
The Bible tells us in first Peter 3:11 to seek peace. We are to pursue peace within ourselves, with others and with God.
We lose peace when we…
- react to our emotions wrongly
- don’t use wisdom
- act out of random thoughts
- struggle with our own efforts
- don’t use God’s wisdom
Not enough silence and solitude will rob you of peace. We all need time alone to relax, reflect and unwind. We need to take time alone to heal. Our culture continually talks to us, the drawback of living contemporary society. Without quiet it’s hard to hear God’s voice.
“Silence is the element in which great things fashion themselves”
We can’t follow another’s voice. Jesus said my sheep know my voice and they follow me. We can’t follow the voice of friends, family or the world. Any voice other than God can be used as a voice of deception by the enemy.
People who lack inner peace are often victims of self punishment. They have either committed a sin or been sinned against. What remains is a sense of guilt, shame, self unforgiveness and resentment. This affect the mind as well as the body.
“Many people suffer poor health not because of what they eat but from what is eating them”
Norman Vincent Peale
If there is no peace when we’re doing something or there’s no peace in a decision you need to make have the courage to stop. Colossians 3:15 tells us to let peace be the umpire in our hearts. Once you’ve lost your peace be determined to learn how you lost it and look for ways to get it back.
We lose our own peace by squandering power and energy through fuming and fretting. We must discipline ourselves to quietness. Be calm and let it go.
“Emotional ills turn in upon yourself, sapping your energy, reducing your efficiency, causing deterioration in your health. And of course they siphon off your happiness.”
Norman Vincent Peale
The more we allow God to rule in our lives the more peace we will have. We can never enjoy the kingdom without peace. An attitude of peace says I trust God. God sent his Son, the Prince of Peace, so that we could know his exceeding peace.
A Prayer for Peace
Thank you Jesus for coming down to us, our Prince of Peace, so that we can know the peace that surpasses understanding. Help me to live at peace with myself, with others and with you.
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Links to other Attitudes in this series
Introduction to Attitudes
|Lynn Austin||Decide to trust Him for one little thing today, and before you know it, you find out He’s so trustworthy you be putting your whole life in His hands.”|
|Charles R Swindoll||“We must cease striving and trust God to provide what He thinks is best and in whatever time He chooses to make it available. But this kind of trusting doesn’t come naturally. It’s a spiritual crisis of the will in which we must choose to exercise faith.”|
|Thaddeus of Vitovnica||“We have very little faith in the Lord, very little trust. If we trusted the Lord as much as we trust a friend when we ask him to do something for us, neither we as individuals nor our whole country would suffer so much.”|
|Jerry Bridges||“If we are going to learn to trust God in adversity, we must believe God will allow nothing to subvert His glory so He will allow nothing to spoil the good He is working out in us and for us.”|
|Coraline Buchanan||“…You say to God, “I have never seen you provide for me.” God says to you, “You have never trusted Me.”|
|Martin Luther||“Pray, and let God worry.”|
|Rachel Hamilton||“God loves you so much that he is willing to hold something from you for the perfect time!”|
|Emily Freeman||“When you can’t see God’s hand, trust His heart.”|
|Gary Rudz||“You can free your soul to fly each day, if you let God do the steering.”|
|Tammy L Kubasko||“Let go of what you think you know. Something amazing happens when you let God and trust.”|
|Mandy Hale||“The more you go with the flow of life and surrender the outcome to God, and the less you seek constant clarity, the more you will find that fabulous things start to show up in your life.”|
|Jerry Bridges||“Trust is not a passive state of mind. It is a vigorous act of the soul by which we choose to lay hold on the promises of God and cling to them despite the adversity that at times seeks to overwhelms us.”|
|Tom King||“It is when we are at our darkest hour, when we can see no evidence that God loves us or that he is even there to listen to our prayers, much less answer them…and yet, we still obey. It is then that the devil is reminded that his cause is lost.”|
|Wendy Blight||“I learned that within the confines of God’s story, nothing had been stolen from me, but rather everything was given to me. My life, which felt so out of control, was in reality in complete control – God’s control.”|
|Teresa of Avila||“. . . it is presumptuous in me to wish to choose my path, because I cannot tell which path is best for me. I must leave it to the Lord, Who knows me, to lead me by the path which is best for me, so that in all things His will may be done.”|
|Ann Voskamp||“The fear is suffocating, terrorizing, and I want the remedy, and it is trust. Trust is everything.”|
|Carter Conlon||“The end of ourselves is the beginning of God”|
|Paula Hendricks||“Trust God with your love life, and buckle up for the ride!”|
|Tricia Goyer||“Thank you for reminding me that the future is in God’s hands.'” “‘You’re welcome. And remember, wherever you go, in body and mind, you simply need to call out to God and He is there”|
When you put your trust in God he guides your mind so you don’t want what’s inharmonious with his will. What’s been impossible now becomes possible. Jesus said “Everything is possible for one who believes.” (Mark 9:23) Throw your heart into trusting God and the rest will follow.
How to develop trust in God:
- Have a childlike faith. Let go of grown up barriers that keep us from seeing God through our life-tainted eyes.
- Faith must grow. Must be watered and nurtured through reading the word and having a grateful heart.
- Defeat doubt by learning to expect God to answer. Memorize James 1:6-8. “But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.” Don’t let those negative thoughts creep into your head.
- Know God loves you. Meditate on his love. Recall the times God came through for you, times he showed his love. The more you know him the more you will trust him.
- Be willing to relinquish trusting yourself. Let God take the reins; let Him guide your steps. (Proverbs 16:9)
- Make it a habit. The more you practice faith and putting your trust in God the easier it will be.
- Acknowledge where attacks come from. Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.(1 Peter 5:8)
Remember times you have trusted God and He came through for you. Write these down and carry with you to remind yourself of how trustworthy God is in times of doubt.
Bible verse on Trusting God:
|Luke 24:38 (ESV)||And he said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts arise in your hearts?|
|Psalm 56:3-4 (ESV)||When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can flesh do to me?|
|Proverbs 3:5 (ESV)||Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.|
|Psalm 13:5 (ESV)||But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.|
|Isaiah 26:3-4 (ESV)||You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord God is an everlasting rock.|
|Psalm 31:14-18 (ESV)||But I trust in you, O Lord; I say, “You are my God.” My times are in your hand; rescue me from the hand of my enemies and from my persecutors!|
|James 1:6 (ESV)||But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind.|
|Psalm 37:5 (ESV)||Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him, and he will act.|
|Psalm 91:2 (NIV)||I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.|
|John 14:27 (NIV)||Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.|
|Psalm 9:10 (ESV)||And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you.|
|Matthew 21:21 (ESV)||And Jesus answered them, “Truly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ it will happen.|
|John 14:1 (NLT)||Do not let your heart be troubled. You have put your trust in God, put your trust in Me also.|
|Psalm 9:9 (NLT)||The Lord is a shelter for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble.|
|Nahum 1:7 (NLV)||The Lord is good, a safe place in times of trouble. And He knows those who come to Him to be safe.|
|Romans 15:13 (NIV)||May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.|
|Psalm 46:1 (NIV)||God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.|
|Proverbs 30:5||Every word of God is pure; He is a shield to those who put their trust in Him.|
He that trusts in his own heart is a fool:
but whoever walks wisely, he shall be delivered.
We’re called to trust God. True servants have a trusting heart. By trusting Him we show that we believe he loves us; that he wants only what is good for us. But so often we put our trust in everything else and wonder why our lives are a mess. We need to lean on Him for everything. Things not going right for you? Ask yourself “am I really trusting God”.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.
Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.
(Proverbs 3:5-6 NLT)
To develop a trusting attitude you must know God and to do that you need to know what the bible says about him. You need to experience his power in your life. And you need to rely on the Holy Spirit to guide you.
But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. (John 16:13 ESV)
If you struggle to trust him for your daily needs as well as difficult trials remember he wants your trust. He wants to know you believe in His love for you.
“…trusting God has become easy…for today anyway.” (Jubilee Journey, Day 94)
A Prayer for Trust
Father, show me that I can trust you, that you do have my good at heart. Show me where you have come through for me in the past.
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Links to other Attitudes in this series
Introduction to Attitudes
Long, long ago in a realm far, far away there was a beautiful kingdom with beautiful creatures ruled by a loving and gracious king until one day one of the creatures decided he could rule better than the gracious king. He wanted to be in charge of kingdom and have all the other creatures worship him. He secretly led many of the creatures to rebel against the gracious king. After the war was over the good king was victorious. He exiled the rebellious leader and his defiant followers to a far off land. This land was lush and beautiful but it didn’t take long before their evil ravaged their new home turning it into a wasteland.
The gracious king restored the wasteland and populated it with new creatures. Jealous of the king’s love of these new creatures the evil leader, full of pride, set out to destroy the very thing the king loved. Now this evil leader possessed great cunning and through deceit he caused the king’s new creatures to turn away believing the gracious king really didn’t love them. The king’s new creation also rebelled and eventually became like the evil creatures filled with pride.
But the gracious king knew the nature of his creation and the evil of his fallen creatures so he already had a plan to cure the land of the evil once and for all. He sent his son, the prince of the far off realm, to remove the evil from the land. Some embraced the son while most chose to remain in their prideful, rebellious state. After many, many years the good prince defeated the evil creatures and those who followed him were restored to their original beauty.
“enemy occupied territory – that is what this world is” ~ ~ C S Lewis
Of course this is only a simplification of the story of the original. I’ve often heard the original sin was sexual in nature but if you look closely at the history of sin you will find the truth behind the original sin.
So what was the original sin? It was the sin of pride.
Who was the original sinner? Eve? Adam? No, it was Lucifer, one of God’s most precious angels who through pride rebelled against his Lord. Adam and Eve’s sin was a sin of doubt and of lack of trust. For a moment they believed the enemy that God was holding out on them.
We continue to feel the effects of their sin but do not be deceived. It was Lucifer’s sin of pride and his need to be above God that led to his rebellion which keeps us in our sinful nature to this day. It was Lucifer’s hatred of God that caused him to taint God’s creation, and he is still at it today, tempting us, taunting us, accusing us, and making us feel that God is holding out on us. Then through our lack of trust, our doubt leads to an attitude of independence and belief we too know better than God. This pride doesn’t end with God but carries over into all our relationships and our attitude toward all of God’s creation. Like the enemy, we too seek to destroy all the Good King’s creation, including our own hearts.
We can fight this. First we must realize we are in a war for our very souls. Our enemy continues to whisper lies, deceiving us into thinking God’s love isn’t true, that he is holding out his best from us. We must break our pride and bow our hearts before our King, the one who can free us from this curse.
Pride may keep us from being humble but realizing how much Jesus has done for us, realizing we’re forgiven, will melt that pride as we realize who we are in Jesus. Check out these lyrics to the song Forgiven by Sanctus Real and remind yourself all God has done for you. Humble your heart before him.
Well the past is playing with my head
And failure knocks me down again
I’m reminded of the wrong
That I have said and done
And that devil just won’t let me forget
In this life
I know what I’ve been
But here in your arms
I know what I am
And I don’t have to carry
The weight of who I’ve been
Cause I’m forgiven
My mistakes are running through my mind
And I’ll relive my days, in the middle of the night
When I struggle with my pain, wrestle with my pride
Sometimes I feel alone, and I cry
And in this life
I know what I’ve been
But here in your arms
I know what I am
Well, I’m forgiven
And I don’t have to carry
The weight of who I’ve been
‘Cause I’m forgiven
When I don’t fit in and I don’t feel like I belong anywhere
When I don’t measure up to much in this life
Oh, I’m a treasure in the arms of Christ
‘Cause I’m forgiven
Well, I’m forgiven
And I don’t have to carry
The weight of who I’ve been
‘Cause I’m forgiven.
Check out the video Forgiven by Sanctus Real
This little phrase can be heard every so often around my home and while humorous when thrown around by family members to that occasional whiner, we must always remember the feelings of others. Humble yourself before God and others.
|Augustine||If you plan to build a tall house of virtues, you must first lay deep foundations of humility.|
|C S Lewis||“True humility is not thinking less of yourself; it is thinking of yourself less.”|
|Francois Fenelon||Whoever will labor to get rid of self, to deny himself according to the instructions of Christ, strikes at once at the root of every evil, and finds the germ of every good.|
|Joyce Meyer||The only way to uproot pride is humility—freedom from pride and arrogance, a modest estimation of your own worth. It doesn’t mean you think lowly of yourself, but it means you are very careful not to think more highly of yourself than you ought to.|
|Zig Ziglar||When you are tough on yourself, life is going to be infinitely easier on you.|
|Madeleine L’Engle||“In a very real sense not one of us is qualified, but it seems that God continually chooses the most unqualified to do his work, to bear his glory. If we are qualified, we tend to think that we have done the job ourselves. If we are forced to accept our evident lack of qualification, then there’s no danger that we will confuse God’s work with our own, or God’s glory with our own.”|
|Charles Wesley||Keep us little and unknown, prized and loved by God alone.|
|Augustine||Do you wish to rise? Begin by descending. You plan a tower that will pierce the clouds? Lay first the foundation of humility.|
|Ernest Hemingway||“There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.”|
|Mahatma Gandhi||“It is unwise to be too sure of one’s own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err.”|
|Ralph Waldo Emerson||“A great man is always willing to be little.”|
|Blaise Pascal||Do you wish people to think well of you? Don’t speak well of yourself.|
|C S Lewis||“As long as you are proud you cannot know God. A proud man is always looking down on thing and people: and, of course, as long as you are looking down you cannot see something that is above you.”|
|H Jackson Brown Jr||“Every person that you meet knows something you don’t; learn from them.”|
|J M Barrie||“Life is a long lesson in humility.”|
|Joyce Meyer||I think it’s safe to say that most sin stems from pride. It’s an independent spirit that wants to do its own thing without any authority or direction from anyone else.|
|Watchman Nee||Towards himself a Christian should have a broken spirit, but towards God it should be one of rejoicing always in Him. He rejoices not for its own sake nor because of any joyful experience, work, blessing or circumstance, but exclusively because God is his center.|
|Rick Warren||Pride builds walls between people, humility builds bridges.|
|Abraham Lincoln||“I have been driven many times upon my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had no where else to go. My own wisdom and that of all about me seemed insufficient for that day.”|
|Charles Spurgeon||Humility is to make a right estimate of one’s self.|
|Criss Jami||“To share your weakness is to make yourself vulnerable; to make yourself vulnerable is to show your strength.”|
|Martin Luther||“True humility does not know that it is humble. If it did, it would be proud from the contemplation of so fine a virtue.”|
|Albert Einstein||“A true genius admits that he/she knows nothing.”|
|C S Lewis||We must lay before him what is in us, not what ought to be in us.|
|Augustine||It was pride that changed angels into devils; it is humility that makes men as angels.|
|Joni Eareckson Tada||Deny your weakness, and you will never realize God’s strength in you.|
|Andrew Murray||The only humility that is really ours is not that which we try to show before God in prayer, but that which we carry with us in our daily conduct.|
Lord, thou knowest better than myself that I am growing older and will soon be old. Keep me from becoming too talkative, and especially from the unfortunate habit of thinking that I must say something on every subject and at every opportunity.
Release me from the idea that I must straighten out other peoples’ affairs. With my immense treasure of experience and wisdom, it seems a pity not to let everybody partake of it. But thou knowest, Lord, that in the end I will need a few friends.
Keep me from the recital of endless details; give me wings to get to the point.
Grant me the patience to listen to the complaints of others; help me to endure them with charity. But seal my lips on my own aches and pains — they increase with the increasing years and my inclination to recount them is also increasing.
I will not ask thee for improved memory, only for a little more humility and less self-assurance when my own memory doesn’t agree with that of others. Teach me the glorious lesson that occasionally I may be wrong.
Keep me reasonably gentle. I do not have the ambition to become a saint — it is so hard to live with some of them — but a harsh old person is one of the devil’s masterpieces.
Make me sympathetic without being sentimental, helpful but not bossy. Let me discover merits where I had not expected them, and talents in people whom I had not thought to possess any. And, Lord, give me the grace to tell them so.
C S Lewis said, “Pride leads to every other vice…. Pride gets no pleasure out of having something, only out of having more of it than the next man…If everyone else became equally rich, or clever, or good-looking there would be nothing to be proud about. It is the comparison that makes you proud”.
So very few are truly humble, a little dab of pride lingers in all of us. That doesn’t mean we should let pride run amuck in our lives. And we must not only humble ourselves before God but also those God loves. And who are they? Everyone on the planet.
Change is a process and becoming more humble will need much time and work. Pride is a nasty virus and the cure is rough, but it can be done. Once the initial infection is put in check continue treatment just as you would with any antibiotic. Like any aggressive disease it will strike again unless we daily die to it and to ourselves. If you don’t humble yourself you can be sure that God will do it for you (Luke 14:11).
Tips on humbling yourself:
- Get on your knees physically or in your heart. The act of kneeling in prayer has a humbling effect. (Psalm 95:6)
- Show gratitude by giving God the glory. (1 Corinthians 10:31)
- Choose humility. We can choose to be full of ourselves or full of God, it’s our choice. (Deuteronomy 30:19)
- Humility is a fruit of the Spirit, ask Him for it: longsuffering, meekness, temperance. (Galatians 5:22-23; Colossians 3:12)
- Shut up. Some things really don’t need said. (Proverbs 21:23)
- Appreciate others and give credit where due. (Luke 6:31)
- Be a peacemaker. If you have a disagreement with someone be the first to say “I’m sorry”. (Ephesians 4:26)
- Make an effort to serve others. (1 Peter 4:10)
- Don’t compare yourself to others. (Galatians 1:10)
- Accept your limitations, you can’t do it all. Even our greatest talents require dependence on God. Without Him we wouldn’t be talented. Let your weaknesses humble you. (2 Corinthians 12:9)
- Become as a little child. (Matthew 18:4)
- Count your blessings. Keep a journal of all you have to be grateful for. (James 1:2)
- Admit mistakes and be quick to repent. (Proverbs 28:13)
Choose one of the tips above that you believe is a problem in your life. Pray about it, make a plan of action to conquer this area, thank God for his help and praise Him for your deliverance. Choose a verse or verses (below) to memorize for when you are tempted to let pride rear up again. Do it daily: die to this part of yourself every day.
Bible Verses on Humility & Pride
|Proverbs 11:2 (NIV)||When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.|
|Romans 12:10 (ESV)||Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Bottom of Form|
|1 Corinthians 1:28-29 (NIV)||God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him. Bottom of Form|
|1 Peter 3:8 (NIV)||Finally, all of you, be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble. Bottom of Form|
|2 Corinthians 11:30 (ESV)||If I must boast, I will boast of the things that show my weakness. Bottom of Form|
|James 3:13 (NIV)||Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. Bottom of Form|
|Proverbs 18:12 (NIV)||Before a downfall the heart is haughty, but humility comes before honor.|
|Jeremiah 9:23 (ESV)||Thus says the Lord: “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his richesBottom of Form|
|Luke 9:48 (NIV)||“Whoever welcomes this little child in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. For it is the one who is least among you all who is the greatest.” Bottom of Form|
|Matthew 6:2 (NIV)||So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. Bottom of Form|
|Philippians 4:12 (ESV)||I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. Bottom of Form|
|Psalm 147:6 (ESV)||The Lord lifts up the humble; he casts the wicked to the ground. Bottom of Form|
|Romans 12:16 (NIV)||Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. Bottom of Form|
|Proverbs 22:4 (ESV)||The reward for humility and fear of the Lord is riches and honor and life. Bottom of Form|
|1 Corinthians 3:18 (ESV)||Let no one deceive himself. If anyone among you thinks that he is wise in this age, let him become a fool that he may become wise. Bottom of Form|
|2 Chronicles 7:14 (NIV)||If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. Bottom of Form|
|2 Corinthians 3:5 (ESV)||Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but our sufficiency is from God Bottom of Form|
|Jeremiah 45:5 (ESV)||And do you seek great things for yourself? Seek them not, for behold, I am bringing disaster upon all flesh, declares the Lord. But I will give you your life as a prize of war in all places to which you may go.” Bottom of Form|
|Mark 10:43 (ESV)||But it shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servantBottom of Form|
|Philippians 2:3 (NIV)||Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves. Bottom of Form|
|Proverbs 29:23 (NIV)||Pride brings a person low, but the lowly in spirit gain honor. Bottom of Form|
|Romans 12:3 (ESV)||For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. Bottom of Form|
|1 Peter 5:6 (NIV)||Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Bottom of Form|
|Colossians 3:12 (NIV)||Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.|
|James 4:6 (ESV)||But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” Bottom of Form|
|Luke 14:11 (ESV)||Top of FormFor everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.” Bottom of Form|
|Matthew 23:12 (ESV)||Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted. Bottom of Form|
|Psalm 25:9 (ESV)||He leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble his way. Bottom of Form|
The less I pray, the harder things get,
Trials and troubles, always beset.
The more I pray, the better things are,
I need wisdom that comes from afar.
His best answers come at His own pace,
We must be patient, and wait for His grace.
He alone knows what for us is best,
Sometimes He’ll say “No” to our request.
Delayed answers are trials of faith,
Honor Him, with your every breath.
Confidence in Him should be steadfast,
Our faith should be strong, one that will last.
To be humble means we can’t go alone,
We need His help, lest we stumble and groan.
Your faith is renewed when you pray,
So go to Him oft’ thru’ ev’ry day.
Much words without heart; this God does hate,
Few words from the heart; will ne’er frustrate.
When you pray, you grasp God’s willingness,
Prayer from the heart; He’ll always bless!
God makes many promises; all so great,
All null and void, ‘less we grab them in faith.
They can come to life for me and you,
By trust, faith and prayer; always true.
~ ~ Connie Kramer ~ ~
We are commanded to be humble. We can’t enter God’s kingdom without humility, not His kingdom here on earth or his heavenly kingdom. Humility is the key to have all you want in life. Humility is needed for forgiveness, answered prayers, and it opens door to blessings. It is the virtue we all need to seek after but pride prevents us from seeing that. It’s especially hard for those who are talented but eventually if you don’t depend on God he will take those away.
For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you. Romans 12:3 (NIV)
The price is higher than you might think and is hardest virtue to learn. What is the root of this difficulty? Pride. You can’t be full of yourself and obey God or live the life Jesus died for. Humility comes before exaltation; pride before destruction.
Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. 1 Peter 5:6 (NIV)
**What are the characteristics of a humble person?
- They give credit where credit’s due
- They’re patient with the faults of others
- They are quick to forgive
- They are quick to repent
- They are lovers of peace
- They enjoy serving others
- They have a teachable spirit
- They ask for help when it’s needed
- They accept their weaknesses
- They have a thankful attitude
How many of these characteristics describe you?
There’s a lot of grace for the humble. When we give God glory we are able to rest and prosper in our souls. The walk of faith starts with humility, depending on God to show up. The attitude “I did it my way” will only leave you feeling exhausted. Once you “do it God’s way” you’ll know true peace.
You can choose the road of humility or wait and be humbled by God.
**Adapted from Norman Vincent Peale’s Power of Positive Thinking
A Prayer for Humility
Jesus, show me where I have a problem with pride so that I may humble myself before you.
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Links to other Attitudes in this series
Introduction to Attitudes
In September of 1986 my life took an unexpected turn that started me spiraling downward until one night in 1989 that would change my life. That night I sat on my couch and looked at my wrists and thought “I wonder which would hurt worse, cutting my wrists or pain of emptiness in my heart.” You see, in the two and a half years before I had lost everything. All hope was gone. Here only a few highlights that drove me to consider suicide:
- September 1986 – I had left my home and my job in Dallas and moved to Daleville, Indiana, my husband’s hometown, in hopes of a better life. Within a week he abandoned me and my 13-month old twin daughters. Adding to my loss he also left us with no home or belongings. We stayed with his mother for a few months.
- November 1986 – I was in an auto accident and lost my car. I finally moved into a place, a rundown trailer. It took two months for the owner to put in a front door. The place was so roach infested you couldn’t walk around in the dark and I had to wash my clean dishes before using them. This infestation came through a “new” stove – a stove with only one working burner and no working oven. And for the eight months we lived there the toilet didn’t work. Night after night I cried over the hopelessness of my situation.
- January 1987 – my dad had a series of small strokes. He was in the hospital for weeks. I had no phone and my husband’s family wasn’t cooperative in contacting me about his illness.
- Valentine’s Day 1987 – he asked me for a divorce so he could marry Diane.
- June 1987 – We moved back in with his mom but would move again a couple of months later because his dad would get drunk and come on to me.
- October 10, 1987 – I’m now living in a small trailer with my ex-sister-in-law and her daughter. We have no phone and live more than mile from any pay phones. I had called my mom in August for her birthday and she seemed very angry when I told her about the divorce. In my soul I knew something was wrong, I just couldn’t get her off my mind so I arranged for a babysitter and I was going to walk to the phone and call her Sunday morning, October 11th. Saturday evening my ex-mother-in-law came over and said “I’m so sorry”, she was crying. All I could think was my ex-husband was dead and I would have to pretend to feel bad. Then those fateful words came, “your mother died this morning.” That horrible phone call in August was the last conversation I had with my mom.
- October 12, 1987 – I was able to fly home to Massachusetts for the funeral. My aunt’s, my dad’s sisters, jumped all over me for not having called my mom sooner – guilt I would live with for 15 years.
- March 1988 – My grandmother called and told me my dad had an aneurism and needed surgery which had only five percent chance of success. My nightly crying over my mom dried up as I prepared for an extended stay back in Massachusetts. The surgery was a success and we returned to Indiana in May.
- July 19, 1988 – I became an orphan. My father died and I was even more desperately alone. Both mom and dad gone in less than a year.
- September 1988 – I suffered a knee injury and was barely able to walk.
- October 1988 – still living in Indiana, away from everything and everyone I knew I became desperately in need of replenishing my family so I became pregnant – no husband – just wanted a baby.
- January 1, 1989 – a new year and a new start? No. The pregnancy was ectopic. After nearly three months of the worst pain I ever experienced l lost my son and any chance of restoring my family or replacing my parents.
- February 1989 – my knee had become so bad that I was unable to walk or care for my girls. I had lost so much and so little had been restored. I had nothing but responsibility and heartache. I couldn’t care for myself let alone my daughters.
I had lost everything – all I owned, my job, my financial security, my health, my husband, my mother, my father, and the baby I was so desperately putting my hope in. But that’s the problem. I was putting my hope in sinking sand when I needed to put in upon the rock – Jesus.
As I was contemplating suicide I walked to the back of the trailer to the bathroom. On my way I passed my girls room. I looked at those sleeping little beauties and thought, “they already have an absentee dad, what will happen to them if I die?”
It was 11:00pm but I was determined to find help, anything to get me through the night. I called a friend long distance (this was back when it cost a lot for long distance and I was destitute). We talked and prayed for four hours. This was the best $45.00 I’ve ever spent. That was a lot in 1989.
The next day I scheduled the needed knee surgery and began to spend every quiet moment with God. Suicide has never been an option since. That was 25 years ago and so much has happened. I’ve had a few deep lows but over all I’ve had a wonderfully blessed life. I can’t imagine what would have happened to my family, my daughters and all the people I’ve helped since had I decided to take my life that night. I would have need seen my girls grow into such beautiful young women, I would have never influenced so many students, I would have never gone on my Jubilee Journey and met my father’s family and I would have never been at the birth of my grandson, never known that beautiful little boy. All I lost has been restored to the full and overflowing (John 10:10). And don’t think too negatively about my ex-husband. All is forgiven and I can say we are friends. To this day I count his mom and sister as my dearest friends. And he never did marry Diane.
No matter what the circumstance there is ALWAYS hope in Jesus. Find a way to the ROCK and there you will find hope. If you’re still alive it’s because God isn’t done with you yet, there is still a purpose and a hope (see Jeremiah 29:11)
“No matter how dead, no matter how impossible, no matter how hopeless – with Jesus nothing is too difficult, nothing is impossible and it’s NEVER too late”
~ ~ Jubilee Journey, Day 542
Next week: A Humble Attitude
|William Gurnall||Truly, hope is the saint’s covering, wherein he wraps himself, when he lays his body down to sleep in the grave: “My flesh,” saith David, “shall rest in hope.”|
|Anne Graham Lotz||“If God can bring blessing from the broken body of Jesus and glory from something that’s as obscene as the cross, He can bring blessing from my problems and my pain and my unanswered prayer. I just have to trust Him.”|
|Anne Lamott||“Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope that if you just show up and try to do the right thing, the dawn will come. You wait and watch and work: You don’t give up.”|
|William Law||“Pray, and let God worry.”|
|Catherine Marshall||“God is the only one who can make the valley of trouble a door of hope.”|
|Barbara Crafton||“[I]t’s never too late. You can’t screw up so badly that God can’t find something worth building in the wreckage, that life can’t assert its return when it is time.”|
|Rick Warren||“What gives me the most hope every day is God’s grace; knowing that his grace is going to give me the strength for whatever I face, knowing that nothing is a surprise to God.”|
|Billy Graham||“I’ve read the last page of the Bible. It’s all going to turn out all right.”|
|William Gurnall||Hope fills the afflicted soul with such inward joy and consolation, that it can laugh while tears are in the eye, sigh and sing all in a breath; it is called “the rejoicing of hope” (Hebrews 3:6).|
|Corrie Ten Boom||“Joy runs deeper than despair.”|
|Joyce Meyer||God gives us hopes and dreams for certain things to happen in our lives, but He doesn’t always allow us to see the exact timing of His plan.|
|Thelma Wells||“God does not always heal us instantly the way we think. He is not a jack-in-the-box God. But God is walking with me through this.”|
|Tom Bodett||“They say a person needs just three things to be truly happy in this world: someone to love, something to do, and something to hope for.”|
|Joel Osteen||“You’ve got to believe that God is in control of your life. It may be a tough time but you’ve got to believe that God has a reason for it and he’s going to make everything good.”|
|Alfred Tennyson||“Hope Smiles from the threshold of the year to come, Whispering ‘it will be happier”|
|Alexander Pope||“Blessed is he who expects nothing, for he shall never be disappointed.”|
|Pittacus Lore, from “I Am Number Four”||“When you have lost hope, you have lost everything. And when you think all is lost, when all is dire and bleak, there is always hope.”|
|Aristotle||“Hope is a waking dream.”|
|Dalai Lama XIV||No matter what sort of difficulties, how painful experience is, if we lose our hope, that’s our real disaster.”|
|Epicurus||“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for.”|
|Joyce Meyer||Positive minds full of faith and hope produce positive lives.|
We all need hope in our lives. It’s necessary for our very existence. Here are some practical ways to build your hope in God.
Ten ideas for a more hopeful attitude
- Believe there is a solution for every situation
- Count your blessings. Just knowing all the good in your life can increase your hope
- Pray about what’s stealing your hope to bring clarity to your situation
- Take action on anything that’s in your power to change and rely on God for the rest
- Believe and seek God’s guidance
- Create a mood of worship
- Creative spiritual thinking has power to give strength to endure
- Meditate on any of the scripture below or other hopeful quotes
- Read the book of Ruth. A classic story of utter despair to glorious hope fulfilled
- Spend time with hopeful, positive people
Make a list of all your blessings. Give thanks to God for them. Use the list to remind yourself of God’s faithfulness and that He is your source of hope.
Books on hope
You’ll Get Through This: Hope and Help for Your Turbulent Times by Max Lucado
When the Going Gets Tough by Joe Stowell
Help Me I’m Alone by Joyce Meyer
Bible Verses on hope (ESV)
|Romans 5:5||And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.|
|Hebrews 6:19||We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain|
|Psalm 43:5||Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.|
|1 John 3:3||And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure.|
|Psalm 33:22||Let your steadfast love, O Lord, be upon us, even as we hope in you.|
|Romans 8: 24||For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.|
|Psalm 71:14||But I will hope continually and will praise you yet more and more.|
|Psalm 39:7||“And now, O Lord, for what do I wait? My hope is in you.|
|Psalm 33:18||Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear him, on those who hope in his steadfast love|
|Romans 5:4||And endurance produces character, and character produces hope|
|Proverbs 13:12||Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a desire fulfilled is a tree of life.|
|Psalm 71:5||For you, O Lord, are my hope, my trust, O Lord, from my youth.|
|Lamentations 3:24||“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.”|
|Romans 15:13||May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.|
|Proverbs 10:28||The hope of the righteous brings joy, but the expectation of the wicked will perish.|
|Romans 12:12||Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.|
|Hebrews 11:1||Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.|
I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits,
and in his word I put my hope.
I wait for the Lord
more than watchmen wait for the morning,
more than watchmen wait for the morning.
Israel, put your hope in the Lord,
for with the Lord is unfailing love
and with him is full redemption.
He himself will redeem Israel
from all their sins.
Psalm 130:5-8 (NIV)
Hope is a basic necessity of life because without hope there is no life. Hope gives us strength and joy. It fuels all the attitudes we’ve covered this year.
- We can’t be positive without hope.
- We won’t have confidence without hope.
- We can’t live contented without hope.
- Where is our patience with others when hope is gone?
- There is definitely no joy where there’s no hope.
- It’s hard to be kind to others with no hope in our hearts.
- All courage is lost when there is no hope.
- What do we have to be determined for when there is nothing to hope for.
But life here on planet Earth is often overwrought with problems which steal our joy and ultimately our hope…hope in life and hope in God. Everyone at one time or another will feel that urge to give up; like all hope is gone. Live long enough without hope and you may feel there is nothing left to live for. We either find hope, find a way to live without it, or take our own lives because the pain of giving up is far less than the pain of living one more day without hope. Perhaps you’re going through a trial or a season of trials that has drained your hope and strength. We all have unique challenges but everyone longs for hope, that light at the end of the tunnel; the promise that “it” will get better.
One example of hope is found in the life of the prophet Jeremiah. Jeremiah wrote the book of Lamentations, a book of mourning, during the darkest times of Judah’s history. During Jerusalem’s destruction though Jeremiah wrote these words of hope and expectation that God would come through on his promises.
The faithful love of the Lord never ends!
His mercies never cease.
Great is his faithfulness;
his mercies begin afresh each morning.
I say to myself, “The Lord is my inheritance;
therefore, I will hope in him!”
The Lord is good to those who depend on him,
to those who search for him.
Lamentations 3:22-25 (NLT)
Another example is found in the New Testament. The disciples were full of hope that their savior had come; that Jesus was the Messiah, so when he died so did their hope. What were they to do now that they had witnessed hope itself die on a cross. And can you imagine being Peter, having betrayed your best friend and king? Where do you go from there? These men lived an extraordinary life; how then do you go back to ordinary?
Jesus also experienced deep grief and sorrow, despair beyond belief. The words “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me” grip my heart with despair and loss of hope. Anyone who has experienced the “dark knight of the soul” can attest to a spiritual loss of hope. Financial loss, loss of health, loss of a dream, divorce, loss of a friend or family member or in my opinion, the most horrific loss – the loss of a child can all rip hope right out of our hearts. Paul’s words in Romans 8:28, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose” seem to frustrate rather than to give hope.
So often put our hope in the wrong places – in the world, in other people, in our abilities or finances – but all of that is like sinking sand. The only place we can find hope is in Jesus Christ. These words by Kutless tell us just where we need to go to find hope.
I lift my eyes up, unto the mountains
where does my help come from?
My help comes from You, maker of heaven
creator of the earth
oh how I need you Lord
You are my only hope
You’re my only prayer
so I will wait for You
to come and rescue me
to come and give me life
Lyrics from “I Lift My Eyes Up”
God is always hopeful; he never gives up on us even at our worst.
A Prayer for Hope
Thank you Jesus for being our inspiration and our source of hope. We thank you now for giving us the courage to see you and trust you in our most difficult times.
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Links to other Attitudes in this series
Introduction to Attitudes