As some of you know, I have been with my partner for almost eight years now. The relationship has been quite the adventure as we fought many foes, put out theoretical forest fires, raised two pre-teens into adulthood and built a successful music business. I thought I was on the course God had planned for me. I was setting goals and planning my future around this man and I in the thoughts that we were going to be together forever. Everything was going my way, until it wasn’t. I then realized I had been living in the future and not in the now! Unfortunately, I was blind and found out I hadn’t been given an agenda to the plan at all.
If you could truly tell the future, you’d be famous by now… Stop worrying and just keep walking.
I know ultimately, down deep inside, that I’m on a course to the good things God has promised me; but somehow I veered off the actual path and took a detour that has changed my life forever. I do believe that the Good Lord uses every decision we make to show us how to live. I don’t believe we can knock ourselves so far out of destiny that there is no recovering from it. But, when we start trail-blazing, we can hypothetically hit the pause button in your lives. We become stifled in growth because we end up repeating the same mistakes over and over until we let go of the wheel and let God steer us back into His ultimate plan for our lives.
After much deliberation and struggling through these past few months trying to understand why my beau left me “to go find himself and be single for awhile“, I have learned that my life isn’t always about what I’m learning. Sometimes, other people’s courses can teach us a lot about our own destiny unfolding in front of us. If we aren’t consistently listening for the Lord to show us through sight and scripture (the word) what we should be learning from a circumstance then we have the possibility of trapping our mindsets by the question which is, “why is this happening to me?”. The answers to these particular two questions can result in two very different emotional reactions. Therefore, altering the next plan of action we set for our lives which could result in drastically differing states of mind and or courses of direction.
Have you ever heard the term, “don’t be a victim of your circumstances by being reactive, instead be actively choosing your circumstances”?
In the circumstance of a break-up in the long term relationship, we all find ourselves feeling bewildered and abandoned. Most of the time, we have a million questions running through our minds. But, the main question we ask ourselves after processing the shock of the situation can directly influence the next course of action we choose.
If the question is, “why did this happen to me?” Then we could falter into the mindset of victimization, wherein we do not take credit for the failure of the relationship and instead focus on our loss resulting in an emotional state of mourning and regret.
On the other hand, if we ask ourselves, “what is this trying to teach me?” We could find that our minds (being as analytical as they are) would start to search for purpose and meaning in the situation. This mindset could perpetuate a more excited, fervent and more driven emotional state, giving us a new sense of direction for our lives.
Either way you look at it, seems to me, that one could bring a positive reaction and one could bring a negative reaction. If you’re mourning, you are sad and if you’re driven you are happy, right? Well, not necessarily… No matter what the question is, we shouldn’t be number one, asking ourselves. We should be seeking God’s answers through listening to Him and praying for answers and watching where He directs our footing.
Our minds tell us that we should feel emotions about our circumstances. That somehow, we need to feel happy or sad in order to process the situation. Then, we make decisions based on those emotions to take the next steps in our lives. Unfortunately, if you are anything like me, we wake up a few years later in similar circumstances and wonder how we ended up back in the same situation! It’s a vicious circle we have all walked and no one enjoys it. But luckily, for those who believe in the Good Lord, Jesus Christ, there is Hope!
When we walk with the Lord, we slowly start to learn that our emotions have very little to do with what God is doing in our lives and that the way we feel about something is rarely the reasons we should make a decision about our circumstance. The fact is, emotions are from the mind and what do we know about the mind? As Believers in Christ, we understand the mind to be a part of our “Human” intellect.
Romans 12:2 Tells us that the mind is to be renewed through our trials.
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
It is in TOKOGAE. It is our KNOWLEDGE. The knowledge of good and evil. The knowledge of positive and negative. It is separated from our souls who reside with the Lord. It is not part of the spiritual realm where we abide in Christ and He abides in us. So through our trials and tribulations, God is slowly transforming our minds to become one with Christ Jesus, our Savior. And as this process happens, we learn that emotions are separated from us as well because in the Lord, there is no sorrow, no sadness and no anger! Only JOY!
So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, 2 complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind.
We are to COMPLETE the Father’s Joy! Psychologists note that Joy is much different than happiness. Happiness can come from eating your favorite ice cream or visiting a theme park you really like or receiving a gift you eyed in the window. Joy comes from somewhere else, somewhere down deep inside of you. Joy is a state where you find yourself and love yourself. Joy, comes from the Lord.
So then how are we to make decisions? How are we to process situations and life lessons if we do not process them with emotions? That my friend, is the secret to life! I have actually retired any “plans” I thought I had up to this point. First out of fear and now out of submission to my Heavenly Father’s will.
Yesterday morning I suffered another emotional breakdown. I had issues at work, I couldn’t sell my truck, I was drowning in bills, and my break-up with my beau was still reeling in my mind as a significant and disastrous loss. I started crying out loud in bed asking God to just take it all from me. I couldn’t emotionally breathe anymore. There was so much going on that I felt like a toddler who spent too much time being over-stimulated and had to take a nap. My body was aching and I was in vehement turmoil.
Well, I gave up. I released my belongings. I was letting go of everything. I had to give up the notion that I would come to understand where God wanted me to go and just hold on for the ride. Well, I guess it gave God the chance to take over. The truck sold within two hours. I caught up on paying the bills. And I know everything else will fall into place.
It will work out because I got out of the driver’s seat. I let go, and let God. I had to stop listening to myself, shut up and listen to God. Once I cleared my mind of all those emotions, that knowledge (or TOKOGAE) that I thought I was giving myself… I was able to hear again, see again and speak the truth. Living on earth as a Believer should be compared to living as a person who is mute, deaf and blind. This way, you can hear, speak and see no evil.
If we stay deaf to the world’s ways and listen only for God’s ways, we will truly be able to hear what is important to us and our journey. We can’t hear God if we are listening to ourselves either! We must turn the volume down of our own thoughts and ideas so as to hear the quiet whisper of the Lord speaking truth to our souls. We also won’t be able to hear the dangers that lurk in the dark around us. So, in order to hear what we need to know to make the right decisions, we must listen for God to tell us when we are moving in the wrong direction.
13 I am like the deaf, who cannot hear,
like the mute, who cannot speak;
14 I have become like one who does not hear,
whose mouth can offer no reply.
15 Lord, I wait for you;
you will answer, Lord my God.
16 For I said, “Do not let them gloat
or exalt themselves over me when my feet slip.
If we stay mute and don’t speak of our problems with solutions, but instead of talking we pray, we can be delivered the speech that will encourage us to take the right actions. We will encourage one another properly in spirit and joy. We will not lie or deceive ourselves through gossip and rumors; but instead lift one another up. The bible tells us when we don’t know how to pray (or speak to God) about our problems, the Holy Spirit prays for us. Through groans and mutterings of a mute man, we can pray and seek our Heavenly Father! The Spirit becomes our mind here, replacing those emotions with the will of God!
Romans 8: 26-27
26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. 27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.
And finally, we should constantly be grasping and holding on tightly to Jesus because we can’t see the path He has laid in front of us. We can’t articulate our paths correctly. So, we constantly are being lead in and out of the Lions den by God’s hand to teach us how to simply rest in Him knowing He will not bring harm on our heads. We are consistently bring taught to trust Him instead of ourselves. This Rest is also called FAITH. Does a newborn baby flail about when his mother moves him? In most instances, he does not. He has perfect FAITH and stays at rest. We must be transformed into a state of mind where eventually drop our walking staffs, our hearing aids and our translators and just follow God.
“If you’ll hold on to me for dear life,” says God,
“I’ll get you out of any trouble.
I’ll give you the best of care
if you’ll only get to know and trust me.
Call me and I’ll answer, be at your side in bad times;
I’ll rescue you, then throw you a party.
I’ll give you a long life,
give you a long drink of salvation!”
I was the “blockade/obstruction” my entire life because I wanted to change my path in the direction I thought it should go. I’m learning that it’s not about me at all. It’s gotta be in God’s will or it just won’t work out. So, hoping not to plan anymore anything’s and pray for the next sign. And if I take a wrong step, the Lord will just remove that and realign me again.
That’s what Jesus healed in the blind man! His ability to see Him in the way we are supposed to see Jesus! We need SIGHT of Jesus, not ourselves, not our lives or our own dreams and visions… But His vision for our lives. It’s never been about me and it never will be. That’s probably the hardest pill to swallow for any Believer, but at least we can know the truth.