Tag Archives: God’s gift

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I want to encourage you today, with the words Wayne Cordeiro in his book "Attitudes that Attract Success"
One way to cultivate staying power is to change your definition of an event or circumstance. After all, the way in which you define your circumstances will determine, to a large degree, how you will respond to that event.
Consider it all joy, and watch your faith grow.
I lived in Eugene, Oregon, for many years. Eugene is known for, among other things, frequent gray skies and rain. Being from Hawaii, the absence of the sun's warm rays on my body took a toll on me, especially during the winter. Believe it or not, I actually resorted to buying a sunlamp one year when I felt I was about to die from a lack of solar exposure!
I remember walking to a coffee shop with a friend one November morning when it began to rain. Not looking forward to another rainy day, I complained, "Rain again! I wish it would quit.!"
My friend's response surprised me. "Hooray!" he cheered exuberantly. "Rain, I love it!"
"Why in the world are you celebrating this horrible weather?"
"Because that means it's snowing in the mountains. Ski season has begun!"
My friend was an avid skier. He had defined "rain" as heralding the beginning of a great ski season. I, on the other hand, had defined it as cause for another day of depression and sunlamp therapy. Between each event and your attitude concerning that event lies your definition of that event.

Consider [define] it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials (Jas. 1:2).

James instructs us to define our events carefully because how we see our circumstances will affect our attitudes and actions. Not only does James tell us to define them carefully, but he also tells us to define it all as joy! Not just the good times but all of our circumstances, including trials, are to be defined as cause for joy. 

How can we possibly do that? Read on, as James continues:

Consider [define] it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking of nothing (Jas. 1:2-4).

We get to define it all as joy, even our trials, when we know the positive outcome any event can have on our lives - deepening our faith, producing endurance and making us complete and lacking nothing. Wow! Now that's powerful promise!
Change your definition, considering it all joy, and watch your faith grow, your endurance increase and your life become complete. You'll lack for nothing, simply because you've chosen to define things the way God defines them. 

Fear is a poor chisel for carving out tomorrow. Today, if you are viewing your future from a position of fear or worry, I want to let you know that view is not accurate or correct. Instead, view your future from a position of faith. That's the truth. Worry is simply the triumph of fear over faith.
There is a story about a woman crying profusely and standing on a street corner. A man came up to her and asked why she was weeping. The lady shook her head and replied: "I was just thinking that maybe someday I would get married. We would later have a beautiful baby girl. then one day this child and I would go for a walk along this street, and my darling daughter would run into the street, get hit by a car, and die."
It sounds like a pretty ridiculous situation - weeping because of something that will probably never happen. Yet we act this way when we worry. We blow a situation out of proportion that might not ever come to pass.
An old Swedish proverb says: "Worry gives a small thing a big shadow." Worry is simply the misuse of the creative imagination that God has placed within each of us. When fear rises in our minds, we should learn to expect the opposite in our lives. The opposite of fear is faith.
The worry is derived from an Anglo-Saxon term meaning to strangle or to choke off. There is no question that worry and fear do choke off the creative flow from God. The less you worry, the more ideas, insight, and revelation you will have.
Things are seldom as they seem. "Skim milk masquerades as cream," said W.S. Gilbert. As we dwell on and worry about matters beyond our control, a negative effect begins to set in. Too much analysis always leads to paralysis. Worry is a route that leads from somewhere to nowhere. Never let it direct your life.
In Psalm 55:22 the Bible says, "Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee: He shall never suffer the righteous to be moved." Never respond out of fear, and never fear to respond. Action attacks fear; inaction reinforces it.
Don't worry and don't fear. Instead, take your fear and worry to the Lord, "casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you." (1 Peter 5:7)
(From John L. Mason's "An Enemy Called Average")