I have been pondering the idea of change and the importance of change lately. When I reflect on my walk with God, I can’t help but realize that God has done some renovations in my heart and as a result my life looks a lot different because of it.
I wrote the following sentence in my journal as an encouragement to continue to press forward in my life:
God works in you — so He can work through you.
Questions That I Ask Myself
I seem to always have oodles of questions that I ask myself and that ultimately I also ask God. Self-awareness has been one of my core values for as long as I can remember. The questions that I have been asking myself lately are:
Why do I have the desire to change things in my life?
Is it going to make me a better person?
Is it for my benefit?
Should it only be for my benefit? Or
Is it for the benefit of other people?
Working as an Addiction Counselor for over 20 years, I have learned that I can not bring anyone further than where I am myself. If I want to help others, I can not help if I am without. It is impossible to give something away, if I don’t have it to give. I can not effectively minister to others, in the areas where I am still hurting and holding onto pain, bitterness and resentment. (You can find out how to let go of burdens and overcoming bitterness by clicking on “let go of burdens” and “overcoming bitterness). In order to help others, I need to be healed and delivered, or at the very least on that path towards healing.
Parable of The Talents
The “Parable of the Talents”, in Matthew 25:14–30 tells us a story of a master who was leaving his house to travel. Before he left, he entrusted his property to his servants.
14 “Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his wealth to them. 15 To one he gave five bags of gold, to another two bags, and to another one bag, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey. 16 The man who had received five bags of gold went at once and put his money to work and gained five bags more. 17 So also, the one with two bags of gold gained two more. 18 But the man who had received one bag went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money.
19 “After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them.20 The man who had received five bags of gold brought the other five. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with five bags of gold. See, I have gained five more.’
21 “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’
22 “The man with two bags of gold also came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with two bags of gold; see, I have gained two more.’
23 “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’
24 “Then the man who had received one bag of gold came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25 So I was afraid and went out and hid your gold in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.’
26 “His master replied, ‘You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? 27 Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest.
28 “‘So take the bag of gold from him and give it to the one who has ten bags. 29 For whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them. 30 And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’
Use it or Lose It
God has given each of us talents and gifts. He has entrusted us with these talents and gifts and has given us direction to utilize them — to the best of our abilities. How often have you allowed fear and insecurity to hide your gifts and talents from others? Confession time — I have indeed hid behind fear and insecurity far too many times in my life. This has caused me to get off track in my life’s journey. I am so grateful for God’s grace that helps me to get back on track.
God has given us a purpose on this earth and that purpose does not end with ourselves — if it did then we would be very selfish people. We are instructed to love each other and I believe that love needs to shine through from our actions.
1 Peter 4:8 ~ AMP “ Above all, have fervent and unfailing love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins [it overlooks unkindness and unselfishly seeks the best for others].”
Our purpose is to reach out to others in love. This is going to look different for each individual person, as we all have different giftings and talents. The main point is we need to be focused on loving those around us.
Answers to my Questions
God has put the desire in my heart to work on change in my life. As we submit our lives to Him and His ways , He directs our lives in the manner that best suits us. He knows the plans that He has for us and He will equip us to carry out those plans if we seek His guidance.
Becoming a better person will for sure benefit me, however, it truly is not all about me. When we work towards our goals we are not only benefiting ourselves – but we are also benefiting others. The truth is we affect other people and hopefully in a positive manner rather than in a negative manner. It is much easier to walk away from goals if only we benefit from it. Knowing that God will work through us is both humbling as well as encouraging for us to press forward.
Steps to Change
1. Ask God to give you the courage to open your eyes to truth. Too often we are afraid to take a look at what it is that is keeping us apart from walking in our purpose.
2. Ask God to reveal places in your heart and life that requires change. We can not change anything that we don’t acknowledge needing to change.
3. Pray that God will equip you to work on the areas of your life that He has revealed to you.
4. Persevere. I wish that I could tell you that change will happen overnight, unfortunately that is not often the case. Often, the change comes through the process of change more than the change itself. Some days you may feel like giving up — don’t give up! Don’t stop before the miracle happens in your life.
5. Be thankful. Everyday we must put on an attitude of gratitude. Be grateful for the little steps that you are taking. Those little steps are leading to greater destinations.
6. Give grace to yourself. If God gives us grace, then we should not hold back grace towards ourselves. We are going to falter and make mistakes. That is all part of the growing and changing process. It’s not about not making mistakes — it’s about what we do with them when we do make them.
7. Have fun. Enjoy the journey. Make it a point to laugh everyday. Give yourself permission to treat yourself with kindness. God wants us to enjoy life. Life abundant is not just about heaven – we can have it here on earth as well.
I invite you to pray with me.
Thank you for the love that You have for me. Thank you for showing me that it’s not all about me. Give me the courage to see the truth. Remove the blinders that have been put in front of my eyes. Search my heart and my life and reveal to me any areas that require some change.
Lord, I give these areas to You (you can name them) and ask that You help me to not only surrender them but leave them at a Your feet. Help me to walk out of fear and insecurity and into hope and faith in You. I stand on Your word and know that I can do all things that You put in front of me to do, as You are the One who strengthens me.
When I get tired and weary I pray that You remind me that I am not on this journey alone and that You are walking before me to make ways where it doesn’t look like there are ways. Help me to not give up but to continue to press forward regardless of how I may “feel”. May I keep walking in faith, knowing that You will equip me to do all that You ask me to do.
Thank You Lord for the gifts and the talents that You have given me. Thank You for trusting me with the purpose of loving others. Lead and guide me in this. Help me to see the joy in this journey. I love You Lord with my full heart.
In Jesus’ name ~~~ amen
God loves you! He loves you just as you are. Even if you never make another change in your life – He will still love You. I love the fact that no matter what we do today, His love stays the same. There is nothing that we can do that will make Him love us any less or any more than He already does. I also love the fact that He loves us so much that He prompts change in our lives so that we can live more abundant lives than we are already living. Change in our lives is not all about us, however it will benefit us.
Are you willing to walk out of your fear, insecurity and comfort zones to see what God has planned for the next leg of your journey? What area(s) is God revealing to you that He is prompting some change in? How do you think these changes will affect you? How do you think they will be a blessing to others?
I would love to hear from you and pray for you.
Be blessed 💞💞💞