Listen: Chris Witts presents Morning Devotions.
Everyone’s life has obstacles from time to time. Your life. My life. Everybody’s life. The obstacles come in all shapes, sizes, and types. Obstacles to our career, our health, our finances, and our relationships.
You name it—these type of experiences are part and parcel of daily life. It’s very difficult to prevent them. But no matter how carefully we plan, regardless of how many things we do right, and in spite of our commitment to making wise choices, we will inevitably find obstacles on our life path.
It might seem obvious and a no-brainer, but you need to acknowledge the obstacle. My first response should be to honestly, accurately, and calmly acknowledge the obstacle I’ve encountered. I didn’t ask for it—but it’s here. Then we start asking questions like:
- Why is this happening to me?
- Why is it happening now?
- What did I do to deserve this?
- Why do bad things happen to me?
- Why can’t I stop this pattern?
- And then, how could I have prevented this?
They’re normal type questions. Richard Carlson wrote a good book called Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff. And he said:
True happiness comes not when we get rid of all of our problems, but when we change our relationship to them, when we see our problems as a potential source of awakening, opportunities to practice, and to learn.
We Need a Healthy Thought-Process
People all over the world go through difficulties and we are all different. What is an obstacle for me, may not be for you—it all depends. Living in today’s world is complicated and gets messy. But I think it has to start with a healthy thought-process. It drives your actions and behaviour in how you start today. Do you wake up in a positive frame of mind—or the opposite? It encourages you to look at difficult obstacles in a different way.
Somehow you believe good is going to conquer the bad. And here’s what makes all the difference. If you follow the Christian path, you start to think differently. God has a plan for your life regardless of the obstacles. He is the divine planner and can overrule should he wish. Who wants to be caught up in failure, doubt and confusion when God, through Jesus Christ, can walk you through the issues? All issues.
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Don’t let unhealthy thoughts become your best friend—replace them with faith in God. Philippians 4: 8 in the New Testament (The Voice translation) says, “Fill your minds with beauty and truth. Meditate on whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is good, whatever is virtuous and praiseworthy”. There is a destiny behind every obstacle you face. God knows even if you don’t.
Nothing Is Too Difficult for God
No matter how big your problem may feel, or how impossible it may seem for it to get better, know that nothing is too difficult for God to handle. Jeremiah 32:27 states, “I am the Lord, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me?” Make that your own verse from the Bible. When faced with an enormous obstacle, don’t focus on how big the problem is—focus on how strong God’s power is. He is much more powerful than any obstacle you will ever face!
This helps to shift your perspective and gain the confidence needed to know you can handle it with God’s help. God will help you knock down that wall in front of you.
Prayer is the best way to communicate one-on-one with God. He gave us the tool or prayer so that we would never feel alone. We can speak to God about the obstacles we face in a safe, judge-free setting. God wants you to open up about your fears, doubts and anxieties so he can help you overcome them. He will listen to the pain you have filling your heart. Prayer helps you to build a solid relationship with Christ, which increases your ability to trust in him and feel confident about his plan for you. There is no right way to pray, all you have to do is begin speaking with God.
God Has Not Forgotten Us
God knows our situation. He’s aware of what we need and when we need it. When we are struggling, we may feel like God is nowhere in sight. We may not hear his voice or sense his presence. Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “With all your heart trust the Lord and not your own judgement. Always let him lead you, and He will clear the road for you to follow. Don’t ever think you are wise enough”. God gives you a new direction regardless of the obstacle you face.
God is much larger than any obstacle you’ll ever face. So rather than look at the wall that’s standing in your way right now, look at God, who stands ready to help you overcome that obstacle. When you focus on how great God’s power is, you’ll be able to see your problem from the right perspective and gain the confidence to know that you can handle it with God’s help. Keep in mind that God, your Creator, knows every detail about what you’re going through, cares deeply about it, wants to help you, and is capable of doing anything to help.
When my mind is troubled and my confidence shaken, let me be reminded of your promises to me. Set my heart free from the fear of failure and give me a breakthrough in my current situation. You are the Almighty King whose rule is never ending. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.