Have you ever switched your thinking? I know for me my thinking does switch. It is about gaining knowledge and wisdom as we grow. New information (knowledge) is meant to change us. The question is, does it change me for the better?
God meets us where we are in life. Even deeply entrenched in sin, He finds us. Think of a sheep in the parable of the Shepherd. Like us, it is caught in thorny weeds and lost from the herd. What does the Shepherd (God) do?
3 So to them he addressed this parable. 4 “What man among you having a hundred sheep and losing one of them would not leave the ninety-nine in the desert and go after the lost one until he finds it? 5 And when he does find it, he sets it on his shoulders with great joy” [Luke 15:3-5*]
For many years I felt the pull of the world. Anxiety and pressure helped me to wander away from my God while I “enjoyed my life.” When the chronic pain started with a headache in my early forties, I called out for help like that bleating lost lamb. Stuck in the thorns struggling against pain and unable to free myself. I lost myself in pain. God had to find me.
He did not wait even when I struggled against Him. He sent the Holy Spirit to soothe me. His son listened to my repentance. When God the Father lifted me up and away like dad lifts his child with the skinned knee off her wrecked bike. I reconciled with the Holy Trinity.
I still struggled with terror when the doctor thought I might have a brain tumor. Anger and resentment came when several doctors said they could do nothing but manage the pain. The last seventeen years have been a long journey back to trust and faith. The faith that He will be glorified through my weakness.
I still battle the “Whys.” My faith falters when I can’t do something I want to do. It is hard to not wander into the thorny weeds of the world that proclaim; “mind over matter,” or “You can do anything you put your mind to!” It is tempting to force my body beyond what it is capable of doing.
That does not mean I do not try to be as healthy as possible and improve my mobility. This meant switching up my thinking. I had to stop listening to worldly advice and wait for God’s nudge to step out in faith.
Another think switch was when I started asking for guidance every morning. What has this done for me? I found my calling, stress has been reduced, and I am healthier. Yes, I still have pain, but it is much less then the first decade of the chronic pain journey. Could my pain tolerance have increased? It’s possible, if so, all I can say is Praise God! It is another gift.
I’m not perfect at this new way of trust. On Sunday I was fearful and worried about the things happening in our world right now. God gave me a scripture that switched up my thinking again, Psalm 27, it is titled “Trust in God.” I pray this blesses you too:
1 The Lord is my light and my salvation;
whom should I fear?
The Lord is my life’s refuge;
of whom should I be afraid?
2 When evildoers come at me
to devour my flesh,
These my enemies and foes
themselves stumble and fall.
3 Though an army encamp against me,
my heart does not fear;
Though war be waged against me,
even then do I trust.
4 One thing I ask of the Lord;
this I seek:
To dwell in the Lord’s house
all the days of my life,
To gaze on the Lord’s beauty,
to visit his temple.
5 For God will hide me in his shelter
in time of trouble,
He will conceal me in the cover of his tent;
and set me high upon a rock.
6 Even now my head is held high
above my enemies on every side!
I will offer in his tent
sacrifices with shouts of joy;
I will sing and chant praise to the Lord.
7 Hear my voice, Lord, when I call;
have mercy on me and answer me.
8 “Come,” says my heart, “seek his face”;
your face, Lord, do I seek!
9 Do not hide your face from me;
do not repel your servant in anger.
You are my salvation; do not cast me off;
do not forsake me, God my savior!
10 Even if my father and mother forsake me,
the Lord will take me in.
11 Lord, show me your way;
lead me on a level path
because of my enemies.
12 Do not abandon me to the desire of my foes;
malicious and lying witnesses have risen against me.
13 I believe I shall see the Lord’s goodness
in the land of the living.
14 Wait for the Lord, take courage;
be stouthearted, wait for the Lord!
Dear Heavenly Father, Thank you for pursuing us and finding us lost in our need. Forgive us our sins and return us to your fold. Holy Father, with you I am not afraid. Hide us in your shelter in our time of trouble, show me your way, for we believe we will see Your Goodness as we wait for You. In the name of Jesus amen. In the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit amen.
Switch up your thinking. Something good could be waiting for you too. Blessings,
*All Scripture is from the New American Bible Revised Edition