How do you beat the chill?
Days like these remind us to relish the sunny 70 degrees when we get it!
But the coldest moments in life have nothing to do with the weather. They come when we are lonely, broken, feeling lost or attacked, and when we are lashing out in anger and hurt.
The enemy has a habit of false promises. It feels like it will help to hunker down, vent and unload our bad thoughts, and wallow in our negativity. But that just makes it colder, further breaks our relationships, and hurts our souls.
The book of James talks about how our tongues have the power to unleash hell itself on earth. There is something about bringing the negativity we all experience into the world through our words that defeats God's plan for the Christian life.
God's hope for us is counter-intuitive. When we experience negativity, God asks us to draw closer to Him. Jesus assured us that when we bring Him our burdens, He can carry them on our behalf, so that we need not. Rather than living in our own feelings, God asks us to bring those to Him through prayer and spending time with the Word, and through God-centered relationships. This lifts one another up, reminding us of joy, giving us peace, and staying focused on love. This is God's kinder and gentler plan for the world... and it hinges on the self-control of His people.
So the next time something does not break your way, make a choice to move towards God. Resist the temptation to wallow in the bad, and avoid verbalizing your hurt and bad feelings. Instead, ask God for help - and for more of Him. Go to James and remind yourself of the consequences of sin with our mouths, and turn to Mark, Matthew, Luke or John and spend some time with Jesus. Even a few moments will transform your heart to look more like His peace, love, and joy.
Next steps: be bold and speak using words full of His promises. "God, I give this person to you." "God will work all things together for my good." "God is my god, so I will not be afraid." "God says no harm will come to me." "The Lord delivers me from trouble." "God give me Your wisdom." A quick Google search for God's promises yields hundreds of ways God assures us that He is ready to help - and we can affirm our belief in these things through our words.
Our hope for you is that your words start to shine light and give God's warmth to yourself and those around you. Speak joy, peace, and kindness. And they will know you are a Christ-follower by your love. Just pause a moment and envision a world full of believers who live this! Wow, what a difference that would make!
See you Sunday at 10! We believe this one hour a week will change every other hour of our lives. Invite a friend - you may never know the difference it will make in their life.