Living Intentionally

Did you ever have a day, a week, a month when it seemed that the world was out of kilter?  You scratch your head and wonder:  “What in the world is going on?”  Have you ever made plans with someone and had them change so many times you can hardly keep up with what is going on?  You know that you have, if you are a human being. Nothing about this world is stable and predictable, it is all subject to change. And, I might add, seems to be getting stranger and stranger by the day.

How do we handle these kind of things?  Well, one way is to get all frazzled and bent out of shape over it.  Another way to handle crazy making is to shut yourself off from the world; be a hermit.  You could also yell at the moon, yell at God, yell at other people, yell at your your spouse or your kids, or you could write protests to the newspapers or lead a parade protesting your chosen issue, or you could call, fax or write your congressman and senator.  So many options, so little result.

I know these options are not a complete list, but you get the idea.  So what are we to do when we are faced with the kind of things that tend to drive us up the wall?

I think I have discovered a better way.  Years ago there was a song with the title:  “One Day at a Time”.  All we have is the moment we are in now.  There are no guarantees for tomorrow.  Yesterday is gone and cannot be changed.  So this moment is what we have.  Let us live in the moment. 

Put away all the things of the past.  If you feel guilt then confess your sin to Father God, in Jesus name, asking for forgiveness.  His promise is that He will hear, forgive and forget.  Not only that, but from that point on He will do all He can to help you.  Your part is to let Him.  The lady that mentored me years ago said:  “The past is past, it is water over the dam, God owns the water now and God owns the dam.  Let it go!”

When we keep looking ahead and planning ahead we will never find joy in the moment.  There are plans that must be made for our future, this is necessary.  But, once the plans are made we can turn the outcome over to God and begin to walk in rightness with Him, enjoying His peace and joy. 

It is so easy to take offense, and one of the biggest joy killers is offense.  Peace also goes out the window when we are offended.

Each of us is unique.  We are each “wired” differently.  When we start to interact with each other, we are presented with the opportunity to be offended by some difference.  God designed us with a temperament, a unique personality, things that make us who we are.  He likes us that way, our part is to appreciate the differences in each other. 

One of the greatest gifts we could give our children is to teach them how to refuse offense and appreciate difference. They can be taught to agree to disagree without being disagreeable. 

If we choose not to be offended, no can take our joy; this choice is a willful action, it is not automatic.  If we react rather than act upon our conviction, then we will slide down the slope of offense and through unforgiveness end up angry and bitter.

On the other hand, if you are a people pleaser who bends over backwards not to offend anyone, to the point where you are living a lie, not even true to yourself, you will also end up angry and bitter.  I worked with a woman who felt totally used and consequently became horrible to be around, her own reactions caused her problems, but she accepted no responsibility and always blamed someone else.

So, to wrap this up, I decided to no longer be offended, and believe me after that decision was made, I had plenty of opportunity to be offended, I did not take it.  Secondly, I decided to live each moment as if it could be my last.  My desires changed and from that point on I have focused upon loving the people I am with as if I may never see them again.  I want to appreciate all the blessings that God has provided for me.  I want to tell God how thankful I am for allowing me to live all these years with my wonderful husband.  (they were not always happy as he was not always wonderful, but you know I wasn’t either. : ) )  I want to be ready for Heaven, but prepared to live her for as long as God allows.  I want to run the race before me and finish my course strong. 

My prayer for you….consider making a decision to live in the moment and refuse to be offended.  You will be glad if you do them.

Love to you from Jesus and me,

Joyah

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