A Pathway Towards Change- Elevate to Breakthrough
Are you or anyone you know ready for a breakthrough in your life?
Are you asking God for a change? Are you discontent and know you need a breakthrough but every time you try, something goes wrong? Whatever kind of change you are seeking after, whether it be financial, relationship, singleness, employment, health, or any other plethora of changes that can be made, the first thing you need to do is pray. That is the absolute very first step that needs to be taken. But don't just pray that God makes you feel better, tries to fix things for you, or makes your change happen immediately and easily. Pray that God reveals the truth about yourself (Yes yourself...not others) to show you what the real issue is. Pray responsibly. What I mean by this is that many pray to God to just ask Him to do what they want Him to do. But are you prepared to do your part? Are you prepared to do what He tells you to do? Are you prepared to do what He is impressing on your heart that will lead you to this change you are seeking? When we take things to God and wait for Him to do what we cannot do, we must also listen to Him as we earnestly seek Him.
Ephesians chapter 6 talks about Spiritual warfare and the armor that God has given us. Such a great teaching chapter! I love how that chapter begins by teaching how to obey. Then in Ch 10 it escalates by saying "Be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power". In chapter 13, it loudly states "Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand".
Having done all! A lot of times people just "stand" and ignore the "having done all" part. Have you done your responsibility or are you waiting for God to fix things on your own terms? Are you living life the way you want to live it and only reach out to God when you need help?
If you honestly want to see change in your life then you need to honestly seek Him.
God knows the heart. When you seek after Him, He's going to respond! You will begin to see your life change. Not because you are being "rewarded" for seeking Him, but because once you seek God and spend time in His Word, your thought process changes. He will reveal things to your heart and you will begin to see changes in your life. Your life will begin to bear fruit. John 15:5 says "I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing".
Let me ask you this. Has God ever led you to do something, but you did not do it?
Of course! We all have! But why? Perhaps it was fear that kept you from following His lead. Perhaps it was stubbornness, thinking that God didn't know the whole picture and there's no way you could carry out the task that He's impressed on your heart. Or, perhaps it was plain old disobedience. Maybe it was pride? Perhaps your still "praying about it".
Well, let look at it from a different light. I heard someone say once that God is not Santa Clause. Sound's pretty silly, right? But isn't that what many think of Him? That you submit your list once or twice a year and expect Him to provide everything you need without any effort on your part? That's not the way it works. God tries to speak to us in so many ways! It may not be audible like He spoke to David, Moses, Abraham, and countless others in the Old Testament, but He now lives in You. He lives in me. He lives in us all and He does speak to us! He speaks through the Word, through teachings, through worship music, through others... and one of the ways, interestingly is through our thoughts. Have you ever had that one thought that just won't go away? Perhaps something you are suppose to do for somebody? It's there when you wake up, its there when you are driving it's there at random times during the day. How do we know it's from the Lord and not just one of our gazillions of thoughts? Because it's a different quality of thought. You feel it in your gut, in your heart and in your whole spirit. It's like a heavy pulling feeling and you just know that it's something that you need to do. That's the beauty of the Holy Spirit! He whispers so gently. He is not a screamer and He's not forceful. He gracefully guides us. God will never ask you to do something without equipping you and giving you the grace to do it.
So how do you move forward into something God is calling you to when fear has you in it's grips or when frustration or confusion is at an all time high? By standing firm in your place. By "having done all". You do your part by following Him, seeking Him, praying for Him to guide you in the direction He wants you to go and you wait for God to do what only He can do. It's not like some type of supernatural fallacy. God does not press down His thumb on you so you can't move without His command or it's not like He takes over and you don't have a personality, or you lose your identity, or all your fun will go away, or you have no will and can't make any decisions. God is a gentleman and He does not force Himself on anyone. Only you can make the decision to follow Him. He will walk with you while you are making those decisions and if one doesn't work out or you stray off path, He will gently guide you back to where He's leading and lessons will be learned. All the while you will gain certain knowledge and wisdom that can only be taught through life experiences. You can't be truly happy and not follow God. You can't be lazy and be happy. You can't be disobedient and be happy and you certainly can't be happy when deep in your heart you know you shouldn't be doing what you are doing. You just can't. I'm not talking about superficial happiness, which comes from things, people, places and that type of happiness does not last long. It's short lived. I'm talking about true happiness which brings inner peace, as I wrote about in my last article.
I challenge all of you, including myself, to get better at answering the call when God moves you to do something. To react quicker and with full faith. Don't be that person that takes a year or two do one simple thing that can be lifechanging for you. Your asking for change? Maybe that one thing your not doing that starts your road to change! Maybe you need to apologize to somebody. Maybe you need to forgive somebody and move on. Those are freeing actions! When we stop making excuses and start taking responsibility for the things that are binding us, you will feel a weight lifted off of you! But Satan doesn't want that. Satan doesn't want you taking responsibility. He wants you blaming everything and everyone else. He wants us to find somewhere else to put the problem so we never get our problem fixed. Warfare is very real and very prevalent today and for those of you who do not believe that warfare is everywhere in a believers life, then you need to read your bible again. Satan is out to rob, steal and destroy every good thing in your life and if you are not grounded in God's Word, you will get swallowed up in Satan's lies and ways. If you are experiencing this, tell Satan to stand behind you and get him out of your way. Keep in mind that to rebuke Satan, you do have to say it out loud and in Jesus name, because he cannot read your thoughts. Only God knows your thoughts. But Satan loves to deceive you and guess what? Nobody else is going to fix your problem. So answer that call that God has been trying to get you to notice. Take that step forward with faith.
What does breakthrough really mean? It means that you know you need change in a certain area and now you have a handle on how to really make that change in your life. Perhaps someone really special has entered your life but your holding off and holding them at arms length. Are they followers of Christ? (you don't want to be unequally yoked). Or on the flip side of that, perhaps someone has tremendously hurt you and your disappointment outweighs any positive in your life. Take it to God! Lift that to the throne and let God take that negative emotion from you.
Why do I feel stuck in this rut? One of the main reasons why we get "stuck" is because a many time when we need something to change, we are always hoping it's the "someone else" that needs the change. Not us. You can't make somebody else do what they should do. The only thing you can really do anything about is yourself. So if there is a problem in a relationship, or maybe it's financial, or whatever the issue is, take it to God and ask Him, "Is there something I'm doing, or something I'm not doing? What can I do to make that change?" It's fine to want change, but it's silly to want a change that you are not going to do anything about. No matter what that "somebody else" is doing wrong, there's a part that you play too. It could be that I'm responding wrong, or I'm only looking at the worst things about that person or situation and not what's right about them. So getting the changes we need, whether it's eating habits, spending habits, finances, relationships, your health, or anything else from the long list of needs, be honest with God so He can show you the steps you need to take to change. Yes, it's true that other people do impact our lives and there's things that don't seem fair at times, but we still have responsibility. God's still asking us to do certain things for the changes we are looking for.
You will have obstacles! Anytime you try to make progress in your life, the enemy hates it! He will throw every obstacle at you possible and he WILL try to stop you. Don't wait to make the change until it's convenient, because it will never be convenient. The key is persistence. Stay on your path to change and look to God and only God for guidance, keeping in mind that it doesn't necessarily mean that the change is not what God wants from you if it does not come easily. Keep your eyes fixed on Jesus! Stay the course!
Changing in Jesus name!