Taking the First Step
There are times when we can see more about a situation from our perspective than someone else can. In fact, we might be tempted to share our knowledge with them even though we aren’t sure how we’ll be received.
I think most of us have been in a situation like this. It’s so easy, from our vantage point, to pull from our wealth of wisdom to try to help them. After all, we learned a lot of lessons the hard way, and it’s only natural to want to save others the pain and frustration of making mistakes.
Or maybe we can see what outside forces are doing to them.
Perhaps we recognize an addiction or a toxic relationship or something else that is affecting their life, things that they are simply too close to the situation to see.
Helping other people can be challenging. We love them and want to help, but we also clearly understand the need to stay in our own lane.
I’ve been the person unable to see my issues more times than I can count.
I can think of specific times when all I had to do was turn away but didn’t.
I can think of situations when others would have helped me if I had just asked.
I can’t help but cringe when I think about how often I thought I had all the answers, only to find out later how wrong I was.
Who was watching me? Who did I have in my life longing for me to turn toward them so they could help me?
I remember one of my high school teachers, one day after class, handing me a book.
He told me he thought I should read it. At the time I thought it was strange and, I’m sorry to say, I never read it.
I kept the book, eventually finding it at the bottom of my closet long after I had left his class.
Years later, after I was saved, I realized the gift he had given me. If I had read that book, written by David Wilkerson, whose sermons have blessed me now for decades, I wonder if my eyes would have been opened earlier. I wonder how much pain I could have been spared.
I remember, after I had grown up, confessing something to my grandmother. I’ll never forget how she looked right into my eyes, smiling in that way she did just for me, before telling me she had known about it all along. I wonder, if she had spoken up, would I have changed? Or would I have gotten angry, turning my back on her instead of changing my ways?
Psalm 91 gives us direction, hope, and encouragement while clearly explaining to us how we are the ones who need to take the first step toward change. And that first step needs to be toward Him.
God has everything under control, including our lives. He wants what’s best for us, even though we’ll never understand His timing. Everything about Him is simply so much higher than us.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”Isaiah 55:8-9
God has a perspective that we’ll never have.
As much as we want to figure things out on our own, to fix it all, to do something to make everything better, we risk not being able to find peace because we don’t have what it takes to make our problems go away.
We tend to lack patience, wanting to share our pain with others as we wait for our problems to get better. We let bitterness take root, drawing us away from the only One capable of helping us.
God wants us to take that first step toward Him because He knows the only way for us to find comfort and peace is through Him.
“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 me and trust me.”Psalm 91:14
I know how our problems can invade our thoughts. Spending time in God’s Word will help with that.
Not only will thinking about what we read in the Bible take up the space where our problems were living, but those Bible verses will pop into our mind later when those same problems try to wiggle their way back in again.
I understand how tempting it is to share our issues with others.
It’s not always because we want the other person to know. No, sometimes it’s our way of trying to figure out a way to fix everything by talking through it.
God is ready for us to share it all with Him even though He is already aware of every problem we have ever had, have right now, and will have in the future. Prayer will shift our attention toward Him and away from what’s causing us pain. What a blessing it is to trade off our pain for His peace.
I realize that we all want to know exactly when our problems will go away. We feel like we can hang on a little bit longer if only we know that an end is coming, that there will be better days ahead. That doesn’t require much faith, and our faith, trusting in God, is what is required of us.
God has already shared with us exactly how to fix our problems. We just need to take that first step toward Him, then we can find ourselves resting comfortably in the peace that only He can offer.
Problems aren’t going to leave us alone. But the great news is that we aren’t alone. God has made an intervention on our part, has clearly shown us that we need Him, has made it obvious what we need to do to escape the torment our problems cause us. He has given us permission to let it go, to hand it over to Him.
He’s just waiting for us to turn to Him, to talk to Him, to trust in Him.
“Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.”Psalm 91:1
Resting sounds much better than the struggle that comes every time I fret over my problems.
What a wonderful story! I’m reading it right now and had gotten it a few days ago. It hits my life right now in a wonderful way. I needed this, remembering that God is always in control! God works miracles if we just let him!
GOOD morning Sandy, I have no idea when this article was written. However, it differently hit home with me. “A WORD IN DUE SEASON”. This is actually what I’ve seen going through. I’ve been associated with a group of women ( non- Christian) or cardinal in character. Whose claiming to love God but none attending church or speaking of the word of God. This started as a support group for an addiction God has since delivered me from. I know the word teaches me that I’m suppose to separate myself from the world. But, this was an AA support group. So I compromised with this knowledge. My story goes as follows. There was one woman that held an extreme amount of pull over the other’s opinion on things. She didn’t like me from the beginning and it was overwhelming and obvious to others as well. She backed off for a couple years with her attacks on me but, recently has made it her personal crusade to ruin my character. Mind you I’ve been surrounded by recovering people with diverse backgrounds. Most not very desirable. One time in Mexico 4 yrs. Ago. I had purchased some expensive jewelry and had misplaced it. I openly said’ without thought that I was in a room full of x- addicts that use to steal. That I couldn’t find my Jewelry. Nothing else. ThIs incident gave her full range of attack. Saying ,“I was accusing everybody of stealing from me”. my lesson in this is; to be extremely careful of what I say and how I say it. So since the Initial incident in Mexico every opportunity that we’re in a group she attacked me openly one time I was invited to play dominoes and I haven’t been going regularly with these ladies at all and none really cares if I show up or not it’s never been in an issue in the past I went into the AA meeting she openly attacked me that I am irresponsible and blah blah blah because I didn’t show up to this game, because when asked if I was invited my nam would be on the thread. It was’nt. Up north while camping she brought up both incidents besides calling my brain dead, stupid, not worth the air I breathe. I have been desperate for friendship and tolerated her insults. I believe it’s time that I allow God to help me separate from this group completely. There has been 8 yrs of history with most but, none say anything to back me up or encourage me that it’s her issue. Good bye world. God supply’s all my needs and will back up his word. Always has, always will. God separated me unto His kingdom of light. And Christian companionship. Praise His Holy Name. Thank You Jesus . I was able to bring a couple people back to church with me.