So you’re not quite where you thought you’d be…

When you were little, you imagined yourself living in a mansion, with a Porsche, and a smokin hot spouse, making six digits in your dream career. No? Maybe you thought you’d marry a babe and move into the mountains and forests and explore the world; spending everything you had on the next adventure. Or maybe you’re one of those people that just wanna settle down with your hotty-Mchotty and have babies. I remember being ten years old and sitting around the kitchen table with my cousins, sipping chocolate milk and eating cheese puffs (don’t question the flavour combination) We would sit and talk with each other about what we thought we’d be doing when we were adults… “Yeah, I’ll probably go to school, graduate and make loads of cash right after that.” I remember saying confidently. “Oh yeah? What are you gunna drive?” my brother quizzed. “Psh! The car I’m gunna drive isn’t even made yet!” My cousin would blurt; spitting chewed cheese puffs everywhere. My other cousins claimed other life goals like getting married at 16 or having two wives cause he”just couldn’t pick” you know, the super realistic things. Anyways, obviously we look back and laugh at most – if not all of those options because none of us are anywhere near those goals. Truth be told, our plans are often quite different than what the Lord has up His sleeve. The things we long for, plan and try to do in our life don’t always line up with what God has in store for us.

“A man’s steps are directed by the Lord. How then can anyone understand his own way?” {Proverbs 20:24}

So, maybe you’re not quite where you thought you would be in life at this time. Maybe you don’t have the job title you’ve been striving for and you aren’t even close to making six digits… you may not even know what you want to be doing as a career! Or maybe you feel like you’ve been a student for centuries; you keep switching your major or starting classes and realizing that it’s not your forte so you drop them. At this point, maybe you feel like people are now making six digits off you from all the money you’ve been spending on classes, books, tutors, campus parking tickets and materials. Perhaps you aren’t married to a hot spouse with a couple beautiful children living in that awesome home with a cute backyard and a swing-set? Maybe you are currently dating someone and the relationship between you guys is simply coasting; nothing’s happening and it doesn’t really seem to be going anywhere. Or what if you have been trying to get with someone and they are tooootally missing the hints and everything is going over their head… On the other hand, you could be single right now and are possibly waiting to cross paths with another single babe. Who knows.

CowWhat ever you seem to be focusing on right now; whether it is a relationship, a job or career, classes or lessons or something else, I want you to put it in a mental box for a moment and listen to me. Don’t worry, we’ll come back to it. God tells us multiple times in His Word that we are to do everything in order to bring glory to Him. Seriously, 1 Corinthians 10: 31 says, “Whether then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” In Colossians 3:17 we are told, “Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.” and again in Colossians 3:23, “Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men.” Right now, if you let yourself think about it, you probably have a lot of free time right now because you don’t have that thing you are working towards. I mean, once you get that thing, you’ll probably be really busy spending time with it, correct? If you get the job; you’ll be working harder to keep the job and hopefully move up the ranks. If you get the man or the girl, you’ll be wanting to spend a lot of time with him or her and potentially put a ring on it. Etc. It literally never stops – there is ALWAYS going to be something else that we are working towards. That’s just the way people work and operate. So hypothetically speaking, right now you most likely have the most time you ever will in your life. Don’t waste it. Don’t squander it. Do not try to fill the time with things that are of no value. Why don’t you use it for things that will be of value in the future? Earthly and Spiritually.Β How about developing yourself in different areas of your life? Perhaps that means learning new skills, developing new talents or improving a gift you already have. Or it could be other practical things like learning to cook or clean, reading more and watching less T.V. or doing more physical activities and working out? The self development list is one that could honestly go on and on… Why not build healthy friendships and see where they may go in time? Why not slowly learn in your work place and get a good handle on the job and get to know the people you work with? Why not spend time volunteering at your church and helping the people in the community around you? Why not spend more time hanging out with your family? I would encourage you to make a list; not a list of what you want your life to look like in the next five years or what qualities you want your life partner to have. A list of who YOU want to be and what you should be striving for in your own life. It doesn’t have to be long or complicated but I know there are qualities and characteristics we’ve always admired in other people and wished we were better at. Why not start working towards those qualities and characteristics? Instead of wishing you were good at the guitar, why don’t you pick it up and start working towards that wish? Instead of people telling you that you’re impatient, why not work in that area of your life? See what I’m saying?

Lake EdgeΒ  We need to learn to be content in each and every point of our lives. Don’t get me wrong, I know there are difficult times in life just as much – if not more than there are joyous times. Often I’ve been asked during a hard point in life, “Well, what do you think God is trying to teach you through this?” or even, “What did you do wrong for God to allow that to happen to you?” People… I’m only gunna say this once. Not everything that happens in a person’s life is punishment, or a lesson, or a mystical map to the key of happiness. Sometimes things just, happen. No rhyme or reason. You see, joblessness, singleness, homelessness or whatever “ness” you seem to be struggling with right now has happened to other people in this world and will continue to occur as long as time continues. What we need to be focusing on in those blessings and hardships is Christ and Christ alone. We also need to realize that all those things aren’t necessarily bad things at all!

“So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” {2 Corinthians 4:18}

I want to encourage you right now to fully embrace what is going on in your life. Maybe it’s a successful moment in your schooling or career – celebrate it! Or on the other hand maybe you are lonely and it feels like the number of people you can truly confide in are walking out the door left, right and center. Whether it be a good thing or a bad thing right now; you need to fully embrace it with The Lord. god’s promised us in His word, “He has not left me alone” – John 8:29. I believe that everything that comes our way in life is to make us stronger as a person but more importantly, it is to make us stronger in our relationship with God and to bring us closer to Him. Every scenario is meant to bring glory to Him. “For it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.” – Philippians 2:13. I know when I am going through something significant that stops me in my tracks, I have to pause and ask God what’s up. Sometimes He’ll tell me “Oh nothing Payton, keep going. I am with you.” Yet other times God says to me, “You handled that really bad. You need to fix it and ask me to work in this area of your life.” Sure, there are always life lessons in everything that happens in life. I won’t deny that. But I want you to know and understand that just because you aren’t where you thought you’d be in life RIGHT NOW, means that it’s because you’ve done something wrong or because God is punishing you. Often God withholds things in our life because He is refining them to make sure the situation will be good in His perfect and holy timing. Accept that.

Mushroom

I want to encourage you guys to love life, to appreciate the small good things that God has blessed us with and to stop and praise Him in the difficult moments. Both of these things bring us closer to God. Both allow us to grow as a person. Both are just as much a part of life as the other. A friend shot me a text the other day; it was a hard day and I was struggling. I told him a couple of the things that were going on and he simply said to me, “You know, it’s normal to have ups and downs… Hang in there, Jesus is the ultimate comforter!” It wasn’t profound or earth shattering but it made me stop in the middle of what I was doing. It’s ok to be in a low time. It’s ok to not know or have your life planned out. It’s ok not to have your life completly figured out. It’s ok. I was so thankful for God to speak through my friend the way He did and tell me that it’s alright. I know that it’s ok for me and it most definitely is ok for you too. On a side note; I think we need to remember that we cannot compare our lives to the lives of others. You can’t compare your low moments to someone else’s Facebook timeline because people only post their highlights. You cannot think another person has a perfect life because their Instagram account portrays a beautiful life. Rarely do people showcase their imperfections, bad qualities and hard times. It’s the social media game that we need to be aware of. Keep your chin up and hang in there. He’ll bring you through whatever valley you might be in and God will celebrate with you on each and every high point you reach. Guaranteed. Keep your eyes off others and the things around you and solely focus on Him who can actually improve the situation.

 

 

 

 

– Stay Satisfied

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