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In this episode I’m going to put forward five amazing truths you need to know to live the life you’ve always wanted. And, folks, here they are!
One. Obstacles are friends and keep us dependent on Jesus.
- James 1:2-8 J.B. Phillips New Testament “When all kinds of trials and temptations crowd into your lives my brothers, don’t resent them as intruders, but welcome them as friends! Realize that they come to test your faith and to produce in you the quality of endurance. But let the process go on until that endurance is fully developed, and you will find you have become men of mature character with the right sort of independence.”
- A.B. Simpson writes about 2 Corinthians 12:10 (about Paul rejoicing in his weaknesses): “The literal translation of this verse adds a startling emphasis to it, allowing it to speak for itself with power we have probably never realized. It is as follows: ‘Therefore I take pleasure in being without strength, being insulted, experiencing emergencies, and being chased and forced into a corner for Christ’s sake, for when I am without strength, I am dynamite.’”
- “The secret of our survival is fixing our eyes on Jesus and making Him alone our focus. Then our walk with God and our commitment to serve Him will no longer depend on whether or not people treat us right or circumstances are in our favor. We will no longer rely on our emotions to support us or on our successes to keep us going. Jesus alone will become our goal and motivation—our prize—and we will live for Him, run our race for Him and cross the finish line for Him.” (K.P. Yohannan, “What Keeps us Going?” Send!, Second Quarter, 2006, p. 23)
Two. Comparison kills your joy.
- “How rare, men with the character to praise a friend’s success without a trace of envy.” Aeschylus
- “That means we do not compare ourselves with each other as if one of us were better and another worse. We have far more interesting things to do with our lives. Each of us is an original” (Galatians 5:26, MSG).
- Don’t compare to others & think you have to be that way to be spiritual or successful or right.
- Don’t compare to your past self.
- Don’t compare to what you think is your ideal.
Three. There are seasons in life and that’s okay.
- Matthew 4:12-25 notes (in my bible) struck me. It says this: “The duration of Jesus’ ministry has traditionally been thought to have been three years: a year of obscurity, a year of popularity, and a year of increasing rejection.”
- Where are you in the cycles of writing ministry? Obscurity? Popularity? Rejection? How is this transition helpful in understanding where we are today?
Four. Races are won weeks before in the small choices we make over time.
- The power of incremental change: Great health comes from proactivity, from incremental change over the long haul.
- “But don’t begin until you count the cost. For who would begin construction of a building without first calculating the cost to see if there is enough money to finish it? 29 Otherwise, you might complete only the foundation before running out of money, and then everyone would laugh at you. Luke 14: 28-29 NLT
- Book recommendation: Eat, Move, Sleep by Tom Rath.
Five. Sabbath as a Lifestyle will supercharge your life.
- “We are merely moving shadows, and all our busy rushing ends in nothing” (Psalm 39:6, NLT)
- In rest, we learn to trust: “But that’s God’s business. He might use the means of cyber technology, savvy marketing, good publicity. But either God, God alone, keeps our words from falling and scatters them wide, or else there is nothing in them worth keeping and scattering in the first place. Our concern, our responsibility, is simply to hear and to heed God. He is always and everywhere to say, ‘Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.’” The Rest of God, p. 183.
- Book recommendations: The Power of Full Engagement by Schwartz and Loer. The Rest of God by Mark Buchanan
“So my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and steady, always enthusiastic about the Lord’s work, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless” (1 Corinthians 15:58).
“Let the past sleep, but let it sleep on the bosom of Christ, and go out into the irresistible future with Him” (Chambers, Oswald, My Utmost for His Highest, Westwood, NJ: Barbour and Company, 1935, p. 49).
Exercise: Where are you?
- What would you NOT have learned/become had you not embarked on this journey?
- What obstacles blindsided you? How did you successfully navigate around them, or did you?
- Where are you right now on the discouragement scale, 0 being totally sad and discouraged, and 10 being awesomely encouraged and energetic?
- How has comparison sidelined you in the past year? How can we pray for you about this?
- What season are you in? Obscurity? Popularity? Rejection? Why?
- What small habits have greatly benefited you in the long haul of this journey? What bad habits have sidetracked you?
- How have you integrated strategic rest into your life these past two year? What is your area of weakness in choosing to rest?
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I just listened to the Uncaged Podcast & learned five powerful truths. Listen here: https://www.marydemuth.com/10/ (Click to tweet.)