Wednesday, June 1, 2011
I’m in the middle of building a new home and love the process. I’m working hard to stay in the budget and fortunately my builder includes a high quality of materials as his standard. Even so, with every decision there is an opportunity for an upgrade. I’ve resisted those options so that I can stay in the budget.
The good news for us is that Christ constantly wants to give us upgrades! I recently watched a video of Christian author and speaker Graham Cooke on the theme The Art of Thinking Brilliantly. He posed the question, “What if every situation had an upgrade to it?” Let’s think about that possibility. God wants to use all of our circumstances to advance us. When we are living in Christ, every issue we face is in Christ. Every conflict, every concern, every problem comes to the Jesus in us. He wants to take our circumstances and work them for good. He wants us to experience his abundant blessings even through our conflicts. How do we get from the burden to the blessing? The way we start our situation determines how we end it, so we want to connect to Jesus at the beginning of the issue. For each issue, let’s ask God, “What outcome have you assigned to me in this situation?” Then we should give him complete control of our attitudes, thoughts, words, and actions.
Our challenge is to find the connecting point to Jesus within every situation. In the beginning of our messes, not in the middle, our task is to find Christ. Often we engage in the circumstance instead of engaging in Christ. What if we go to Christ first? How might the outcome of our circumstances change? We’re bound to get upgrades! Upgrades in peace, upgrades in joy, upgrades in blessings!
Upgrades are like having a first class ticket but travelling coach. We don’t always take advantage of our upgrades. Let’s learn to become intrigued and joyful in every situation as we realize God is going to advance us!
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. James 1:2-5