Life can throw all kinds of hurdles and curve balls at us. It never moves in a straight line. We all encounter a myriad of challenges that can make us reach our breaking point. Unemployment, loss, disease, depression, loneliness, failure, financial problems, rejection, abuse, and spiritual warfare are only some of the various trials we face.
It's in these troubling moments that we usually find ourselves at our weakest or lowest points. All kinds of thoughts can invade our minds as we try and figure out our next move. In addition, we often find ourselves sinking into negative thoughts that so easily suck the life out of us.
I like many others, are acquainted with these moments a little too well. I've faced many battles and disappointments in my life that have honestly weighed me down. On many occasions, I've found myself so focused on my circumstances that it lead me to feel quite discouraged and drove me to believe in all kinds of lies.
Staying in such a negative head space is unhealthy. So how do we face these trials? How can we break away from our negative thoughts and begin to see in a positive light? We may not be able to control our circumstances, but I've come to realise we can choose how to respond. So I turned to the word of God.
As a christian, I believe in what the bible says. Nahum chapter 1 verse 7states “The Lord is good, a strong refuge when trouble comes. He is close to those who trust in him”. Knowing that I'm not alone and that God is close even in my trials, gives me comfort anda sense of security. I thank God that I can rely on him.
When I decided to shift my focus to worshipping God, I began to truly experience a sense of peace. Jesus Christ gives me this inexplicable peace despite the difficulties. (Philippians chapter 4, verses 6-7). Soon, my negative thoughts were replaced with hope and joy as I recalled the salvation I have in Christ Jesus.
The array of lies
I was also reminded that we have an adversary (Satan - the father of all lies) whose main purpose is to steal our hearts away from God. He cunningly taps into our weaknesses and deceptively lures us into darkness by painting attractive pictures of the prosperous pleasurable lives we could gain if we simply surrender to him. He will whisper an array of lies into our ears like:
You're useless; You're failure; You should just give up; You're so guilty, you will never be forgiven; No one loves you that's why you're alone; You're worthless; Just perform this ritual and I will give you riches; Where is your God when you need him?
We need to recognise that one of the major players in our negative thoughts is the devil. Let us not be deceived. Satan will do everything in his power to kill, steal and destroy the life given you (John chapter 10 verse 10).
Challenge the lies with the Word
But we've been given tools to overcome these attacks from our enemy. When we apply the fullarmour of God (Ephesians chapter 6, verses 10-18), we can silence the voices of the enemy that are discouraging us from living a life filled with the hope and love that we possess in Christ Jesus.
In your spiritual battles if fear creeps in, silence it with the reminder that you don't need to be afraid or discouraged for God is with you and strengthens you with his victorious right hand (Isaiah chapter 41 verse 10). When you think God will never forgive you and are ashamed to approach him, be reminded that God is gracious, compassionate, patient and slow to anger. He patiently waits and is ready to receive us with open arms. If we confess our sins, God is faithful and just to forgive us (1 John chapter 1 verse 9).
When feeling alone, remember the Lord is always with you (Psalm chapter 16 verse 8). He will never leave you or forsake you. He provides for all my needs (Psalm chapter 23, Matthew chapter 6, verses 25-34). When anxiety wants to overtake, bring the situations to God in prayer with thanksgiving and he will give you peace (Philippians chapter 4, verses 6-7). God loves us so much that he would even send his only son to die on the cross so we can live (John chapter 3 verse 16).
Always be thankful
It's encouraging to know that when I cannot walk, I will always have someone to carry me. I can be sure that I can do anything as Christ strengthens me. So I will be joyful, never stop praying, be thankful in all circumstances because this is the will of God for my life in Christ Jesus (1 Thessalonians chapter 5, verses 16-18).
Kandima Awendila was born in Mozambique and lives and works as an IT Service Desk Engineer on the Gold Coast.'Kandi Awendila's archive of articles may be viewed at www.pressserviceinternational.org/kandima-awendila.html