How to be “Suprisingly Satisfied”

Surprisingly Satisfied
From “The Resolution for Women” by Priscilla Shirer

Did you know that rat poison is only 3% poison and the other 97% tastes good to the rat? In fact, the poison is a slow killer, so that the rodent does not realize where the source is coming from. Ultimately, it’s the 3% that kills the rats. I’d thought I just share that random information to you this Monday morning 🙂 No really, on a more serious note, overall, life may be good for you and I, but there is a small percentage of posion that the enemy uses to slowly kill our joy, our peace, and ultimately will destroy the purpose God has for us if we are not careful.

That deadly killer… comparison.

We drink in that poison every time we compare our lives to someone we wish we were or something we wish we had. You know…those times we scroll on our facebook or instagram feeds and wish we had what the girl/guy next door has. Or that time someone on social media, we don’t even know, got blessed with a brand new car, brand new job, and went to the most beautiful island for vacation, all at the same time, and you secretly say, “I wish that was me.” We do it without even thinking! Oh friends, we think it’s harmless, but in reality, comparison is a dangerous game to play!!! When we compare, we run a race that was not meant for us and exert energy that leaves us in the same spot we started.

You may not compare yourself to others, but you wish you were in a different season of your life, hurrying and trying to get to a “better version” of your story. I remember the days of my singleness, wishing for Mr. Right to come and sweep me away forever into the sunset. There were moments in my singleness that I did not embrace the beauty of that season. Now I have Mr. Right in my life (praise God :)) and I find myself hurrying our season for the next best thing. If I’m not careful, I will miss out in the beauty of just enjoying my husband fully in the season we are in now before becoming parents or moving or thinking about grandkids lol!

Contentment is not equal to complacency. ~Priscilla Shirer

There is so much beauty where you are now! There is so much God has for you where you are now! There is peace now. There is joy now. There is contentment now. There is purpose for. your. life. NOW. All we have to do is invest fully where we are, because friends, this season we are in will not always be present. Let’s not drink the posion of comparison. “Someone else’s blessing does not mean that it was deducted from our account. Celebrate others’ blessings!” To be content is to find rest in this busy rat race called life. Pastor Larry Stockstill gives us four ways to pace ourselves and find contentment and rest:

R- RELAX: in who you are. Paul said in scripture, “I am what I am by the grace of God.” Learn to be comfortable in your own skin and who you are in God! Learn to love yourself.

E- EXAMINE: your heart for sin. Psalm 32:3 guilt shame, and condemnation will destroy your inner rest. Isaiah said, “there is no rest for wickedness.” Disease is broken down as “dis-ease.”

S- SURRENDER: to the will of God. God’s plan is contingent on your obedience. Rest in His purpose. Until God is through with you, you’re not going anywhere.

T – TIMING: Don’t try to make it happen. God is walking the path with you. Relax. God has a perfect timing. Don’t drive to keep up with the “Joneses.” Sometimes, God will allow some circumstances to prolong to show a great miracle. Don’t pick the fruit before it’s ripe. The fruit will fall off the tree when it’s ready. Timing issues cause Christians to leave their rest.

Be Blessed. Be Revealed.

But godliness with contentment is great gain. ~1 Timothy 6:6

 

Don’t Miss Your Blessings!

Hey family! In the beginning of the summer we started the “Habits of Grace” Study by David Mathis. After a brief hiatus from the study, we are going to FINISH what we started and complete the 31 day study the remaining days of July. If you have been keeping up with what’s going on in the world, it’s so easy to get caught up in fear, despair, and even get distracted from what God is telling you to do. I want to encourage you to keep your eyes on Jesus because only then will we have the right perspective about everything. These study posts are designed to help realign us back in the direction God has us to go.

It is very possible to miss out on your blessings! Let me say that again. You can miss out on the benefits of the Lord. When we are not in the will of God and have not positioned ourselves to receive, we simply won’t. One of the ways many people do not position themselves is not going to a place of corporate worship in the local church. They do not go because they do not know what it has to offer. David Mathis does an incredible job of shedding light on five benefits of corporate worship and why we need them. Some of my most life transforming moments happened in corporate settings (i.e. this picture when I was in college). I hope that you will be encouraged to experience these moments for yourself. Be Blessed! Be Revealed!

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  • Awakening – Our weeks are rough – and – tough. We often experience spiritual fog and a sense of lethargy when we deal with this fallen world and it can disorient us to what’s really important. I have found even on Sundays when we wake up and don’t “feel” like going, those are the times we need most to remind our souls, “For me it is good to be near God” (Ps. 73:28). It’s something about getting in the midst of other believers that the fire is rekindled and your mind breaks free from the fog.
  • Assurance – We are not meant to stand alone. God made us for community, “the church,” and being part of this local and global community plays an important role in assuring us that we know whom we have believed (2 Tim. 1:12).
  • Advance – Christian growth is not just something we take away from the sermon and work into our lives that week. Tim Keller says that sanctification can happen “on the spot” as we sit under the gospel preaching and engage in corporate worship. Corporate worship is for our general “up-building and encouragement and consolation” (1 Cor. 14:3).
  • Accepting Another’s Leading – In private devotions, we lead ourselves in some sense. In corporate worship, we’re made to receive the leading of others. It’s a wonderful thing in our private devotions to make choices in the driver’s seat, but it is also good for us to practice engaging with God when someone other than ourselves is making the calls. Corporate worship demands that we discipline ourselves to RESPOND.
  • Accentuated Joy – The Swedish proverb says, “a shared joy is a double joy.” It is the awareness that we are not alone in having our souls satisfied in him. Our own awe and adoration is increased when we worship Jesus together.

 

 

 

The Secret to Your Joy

This may come as a surprise to you, but true joy is not about you. Let me say that again. Real, genuine joy is self-forgetfulness. There are so many people trying to find joy in so many things, people, and places in an effort to ultimately please and satisfy their own need to be happy. Yet, happiness and joy are not the same thing. Happiness is a conditional state of emotion based on the current circumstances of your life where joy is based on the permanent work of the Cross of Jesus Christ. As believers, “our focus is the crucified and risen Christ and the incomparable excellencies of his person and work” (David Mathis).

So how do we get to a place of self-forgetfulness? Brace yourself because I don’t want to give you too many surprises at once. The most important means of grace and our greatest weapon in the fight for joy is corporate worship. It combines all three principles together: his word, prayer, and fellowship. There are just somethings that God gives only in meeting together with other believers! I’m sure you and I catch a glimpse of heaven’s bliss when we study alone or worship in our own quiet place. However, we were made to worship Jesus, together.

A great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and people and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb…and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to the our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” (Rev. 7:9-10)

Heaven will be beyond what we can think or imagine it to be, and the closest thing and the closest taste to what it would look like is to come together with the gathered church and adore our King. Understand though that worship is bigger than services and gatherings, it is a way of life. And its not necessarily and emotion we seek to obtain. True worshippers worship in spirit and in truth (John 4:24). John Piper states this, “In the moment of authentic emotion, the calculation vanishes and we are taken above the reasoning work of the mind and we experience feeling without reference to logical or practical implications.”

In the next post I will discuss five benefits of corporate worship and what those things that God gives only in a gathered meeting. I don’t know about you, but I sure do want to experience a taste of heaven here on earth while I’m here. Take a moment to look at this video by the worship team Jesus Culture. It captures at the essence of what this post is about. Be Blessed! Be Revealed!