Even when I'm not feelin' it.
It’s a struggle to stay positive these days. I know I still care way too much about what other’s think of me. I’m frustrated with critical people and find myself critical of them. Don’t you think that is a little dumb? Maybe even hypocritical? I’ve got caught up in examining the minutia of life. I’ve shifted my center of thinking to me and my circumstance. I know better but my emotions have ruled over logic and truth.
So what do we do when we are overwhelmed by the world?
WE COUNT IT ALL JOY!
James 1:2 (NLT) Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.
James reminds us that this is the opportunity to put Jesus back into the center of my focus. Not so He blocks the problems, but so I can see the problem through Him. He is my Lens for the world. He is the Source of my worth. He is the Director of my steps.
Joy means to have a feeling of well-being. Circumstances do not dictate my comfort. Well, it does but my response to any discomfort is confronted with the reality of Jesus.
Jesus is my Re-creator. Daily He is making me new and more and more into His image.
Jesus is my Source for living water. He sustains me. He purifies me.
Jesus is my Bread. He is my Provider.
Jesus is my Light. He illuminates the truth.
Jesus is my Shepherd. He protects me.
Jesus is my Vine. He is the source of what is good and through Him I produce fruit.
Jesus is my King. I belong to His Kingdom. I am just a visitor here. However, while I’m here I will do all that I can to help bring His Kingdom to earth as it is in heaven.
I am reminded again of the two verses that would not leave me alone last year:
Micah 6:8 (NLT) No, O people, the Lord has told you what is good, and this is what He requires of you: to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.
James 1:27 (NLT) Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.
I pray that we each live this out. We need to trust Him. He is working all for the good of His Kingdom. I don’t see Him, but I trust Him. I see the results of His presence. I lean into it and I know He is working. In the process, with Jesus in the center, we will be filled with joy.
1 Peter 1:8 (NLT) You love Him even though you have never seen Him. Though you do not see Him now, you trust Him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy.