A Life Lived ResolvedFinding God's Peace and Purpose in our Everyday Lives
By Evangelist Nidicka Frederick
Passage Philippians 4:6-7
6 Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. 7 Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
Passage Proverbs 3:5-6
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will direct your paths.
Lack of FAITH/Patience
One of the hardest parts of finding resolution in difficult times is our own misguided thought process- we think wrong! We usually try to “fix, change or handle” what is not ours to touch while being complacent with the things we can, should and are expected to change. Do you remember The Serenity Prayer? Are you familiar with it in its entirety? I love this prayer because it touches on each of the five themes of this ministry: Renewal, surrender, accountability, repentance, and purpose. Unfortunately, many have learned this prayer in piecemeal and not in its entirety. In the latter half of this popular prayer we see the author knows how to seek resolution in this life by accepting adversity as a path to peace and placing all hope, faith and desires in this world in Him.
The Serenity Prayer
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
That I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
Forever in the next.
How many hours of your life have you spent- trying to get the approval of others, trying to be like (loved or adored), wanting someone to be your friend or lover, looking for attention, needing validation, feeling depressed, anxious and alone, and wanting someone else to change? For many, their existence is based entirely or in part of this list. Now imagine how much we could have accomplished in God’s will had we placed all of that energy in the right place.
Our actions speak to our faith and our faith to our endurance. The New Year is a perfect time for self-introspection and to determine whether your life speaks faith and endurance or is it being wasted trying to do things in your own strength that can only be done with God’s. Are you setting financial goals without a heart of giving? Are you seeking new relationships while holding on to grudges and withholding forgiveness? Niebuhr understands that to live life resolved one must be willing to surrender. Surrender all of the old habits that hinder your likeness to Christ and adopt behaviors of peace, love, forgiveness, faith and patience.
Passage 1 Peter 4:12-13
12 Dear friends, don’t be surprised at the fiery trials you are going through, as if something strange were happening to you. 13 Instead, be very glad—for these trials make you partners with Christ in his suffering, so that you will have the wonderful joy of seeing his glory when it is revealed to all the world.
The second thing I believe that makes it difficult for us to live a life resolved is our inability to endure suffering.
Pains stinks and to further complicate things bad things happen to us when we are trying to be especially good people. Pain does not discriminate. I love Paul’s speech to the Corinthians when he shares his hardships. Let’s look closer-
Passage 2 Corinthians 6:3-8
3 We live in such a way that no one will stumble because of us, and no one will find fault with our ministry. 4 In everything we do, we show that we are true ministers of God. We patiently endure troubles and hardships and calamities of every kind. 5 We have been beaten, been put in prison, faced angry mobs, worked to exhaustion, endured sleepless nights, and gone without food. 6 We prove ourselves by our purity, our understanding, our patience, our kindness, by the Holy Spirit within us, and by our sincere love. 7 We faithfully preach the truth. God’s power is working in us. We use the weapons of righteousness in the right hand for attack and the left hand for defense. 8 We serve God whether people honor us or despise us, whether they slander us or praise us. We are honest, but they call us impostors.
It is unrealistic for us to want to live in perpetual happy bubbles. It’s a much better investment to learn how to endure through hardship.
WHAT WE DO: We complain, bicker, accuse, interfere, engage, we move in our own strength, and we justify our ungodly behaviors…
WHAT GOD WANTS US TO DO: (Read James 1:1-26 in its entirety
- Corinthian 2:10 take pleasure in our weakness
- 1John 1:9 confess our sins
- Galatians 5:16 walk in the spirit
God makes provision for our endurance through difficult times and promises to be our strength to get through them.
Passage 2 Timothy 1:7
7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
Lack of understanding of our power
Usually, when we approach change, we approach it in our own strength. Problem is God’s strength is made perfect in our weakness. Do you see how we are coming back to the idea of surrender? Sometimes, we need to be weak to be strong but we take offense instead of pride in our weakness. Let’s look closer-
Passage 2 Corinthians 12:7-10:
7 even though I have received such wonderful revelations from God. So to keep me from becoming proud, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger from Satan to torment me and keep me from becoming proud. 8 Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away. 9 Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.