Lately, the devil has really been messing with me. Trying to put doubts and fears in my mind about nearly everything.
I really had to dig deep into my faith and the things God has done for me in order to stay strong and keep that smile on my face. Although my life really felt like a mess, I remember that God will never forget nore forsake me (Deuteronomy 31:6). And that everything he does, or allows to happen in my life is for my good. He knows the plan… (Jeremiah 29:11)
We all go through trials and tribulations, sometimes it is God testing us and at times it is the enemy tempting us. We need to learn to discern the two and act accordingly. It is the end of the year, and it is no mystery that it is a time when the forces of oppression are stronger than ever, and our faith is really put to the test. Thus, today I want to share with you my top 5 tips to resist the temptation, pass the test and have a beautiful testimony to tell.
So, how do we turn a mess into a message?
Duuuhhhh! Where else would we start!? Pray, talk to you God and ask him to strengthen your faith, and to show you if the hardship is a God sent trial or the enemy’s deed. Ask him to help you stay strong and faithful to him. Talk to your father, your master, your creator, your councillor, your advisor, your guide… He knows, sees, hears EVERYTHING! It can be tempting to grab our phone and call a bff to rant about how awful our life is. Or to pick up the iPad and type a lengthy Facebook post about our despair… But it would not be wise to do so. First because most of the time people rejoice at our misfortune. As we say in french “le malheur des uns fait le bonheur des autres“. Secondly, because that might not help you. Before you pick up that phone to call your bff, PRAY; God has all the answers. I am currently doing a devotional bible plan called 21 Days Of Powerful Breakthroughs, on the YouVersion Bible App. On day 7 the author touches this point: Remain quiet during your storms.
“As our scripture reads, be still and know He is God! It is important to understand you do not have to consult others without consulting Him FIRST. He will tel you who to call, where to go or simply be quiet and He promises to work for you. Be still and quiet.“ I invite you to take a look at the plan and check out http://www.21daysof.com.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.” – Philippians 4:6
Alright, so you’ve done all the talking and complaining you could. You’ve asked God why? When? How? You’ve told him how unfair it was, how hopeless you felt. Then you ended by telling him that you still love and trust him but it hurts…. Great! That is what prayer is all about, pouring our soul out to the Master. Now, it is time for you to listen. God speaks in many ways, but we do not always listen/understand. We do not always get the memo on time, we can’t interpret that dream, we dont get the signs, we dont hear the audible voice… But one way that never fails is HIS WORD!! I mean if you know how to read, and have the Holy Spirit of God in you, you cannot fail to get the message God is sending you through his words.
We all have our ways of meditating, to each his own. I personally like to search for verses related to the problem I am dealing with or the topic I have question about. Then I read the verses and think about them all day/week long. Sometimes, the Holy Spirit simply leads me to a verse or a chapter, and trust me, GOD NEVER FAILS TO ANSWER ME. It will not always be the answer you are waiting or hoping for, but it will definitely be the answer YOU NEED. One verse that I ALWAYS go to in times of doubt or hopelessness: “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. Go sit down, pour yourself a cup of tea and meditate; you’ll feel better.
#3. Read or Watch Positive Things:
It is important not to dwell on negativity or whatever is going wrong in our lives; that is not going to make it go right (or left 😉 ). You need to look at the bright side; that cup is half full! Meditating helps you do that, but one thing I like doing is reading or watching positive/inspiring things. I listen to/read about people’s testimony, ideally people who won battles similar to the one I am fighting at that moment. Sometimes I read my own diary or blog posts, and think about how good God has been to me. This helps me remind myself that he did it before, he will do it again because he does not change (James 1:17). Last summer I was battling some things, so I did the 100 Happy Days challenge. It changed my life, LITERALLY. The challenge pushes you to focus one one positive thing everyday for 100 days and share it with others. This habit did not change, every day, even if I do not share it on social media, I focus on one positive thing that made me happy/happier and keep it in my head.
Another thing I love doing is listening to songs that boost my positivity and faith. The list includes (but is not limited to): “Good day” by Jessica Reedy ft Ezekiel, “Good Day” by J Moss, “You’re Gonna Make It” by J Moss, “He Knows” by Karen Clark Sheard ft. Dorinda Clark Cole, “I Know” by Jessica Reedy, “Something Out Of Nothing” by Jessica Reedy, “Better” by Jessica Reedy … These beats do not fail to make me feel way betta!
“A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.” – Proverbs 17:22
We often want to be alone when we feel stressed, and there is nothing wrong with that. I encourage spending time alone, alone with God and alone with yourself, in order to think clearly. I love being alone, to be honest, if I go 3 days straight without being able to have some quality me and Jesus time, I freak out… But after you’ve had your moment alone, after you’ve spoke to God and mediated, after you’ve ingurgitated a whole box of white Oreos… Go out and have fun! If you can afford it, go out and do some shopping (window shopping will do the trick to). Go grab a bite or have a drink with a friend (or a group of friend). Or go to their place and have some good old silly girly time. Go walk the dog and stop to have a chat with the neighbour. If you live with roommates or family members, get out your room and go have a talk, a laugh or share a plate with them. If you’re new in the city, go on face time and call someone back home, not to complain but just to have a good chitchat.
You get the point! Do not remain isolated in your secluded dark room, with your extra large bacon pizza. SOCIALIZE: interact with other humans. It will do you much good.
“A friend loves at all times, And a brother is born for adversity.” -Proverbs 17:17
#5. REMEMBER THAT NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE WITH/TO GOD:
No mattered how you do it, just make sure you remind yourself that NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE TO GOD. He can move mountains, he answers by fire, brings the death back to life and defeated death himself. So how is that little mosquito sized annoying problem you are going through going to change that? Sorry I did not hear you? Exactly, IT CANNOT CHANGE God’s power. God is God no matter what. And HE CAN DO ALL THINGS. Our struggles might seem huge to us because our little human minds cannot grasp the extent of his greatness and power. “Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit.” – Psalm 147:5. The bible says Great and Mighty is our God, so why you’re shaking?
No matter how you do it, remind yourself that NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE TO GOD. Your problem will be solved! Is it the first time that you are going through something that seems impossible to get out of? If you were honest, your answer should be NOPE! I now it is hard, and seems like the end of the world, but you will see the light at the end of the tunnel. You will get out of there. “Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”- Matthew 19:26. I do not want to sound like I am down playing the seriousness of your issue, struggle or situation. I just want to push you to hold on to your faith, it is the key. “[…] All things are possible for one who believes.” – Mark 9:23.
Alright, princes and princesses, those are what I do when times are dark and it feels like I am carrying the weight of the world on my shoulder. In the past, I would have anxiety attacks in times of “crises”. Now, I cry a little if I have to, and just turn to God, hold on to my faith and focus on positivity. It might seem impossible now, but I promise you, you will get out of it. And when you pass the test, you will have a great story to tell and add to your testimony.
Nothing is impossible, the word itself say I’M-possible. 😉