I went for a walk with a friend this morning. Turns out, we took a road less traveled.
“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” (Matthew 7:13-14)
My friend has experienced some setbacks lately. Not major ones, when taken one-by-one. But altogether, they had reached a tipping point. So much so, my friend said: “I can’t do anything right.” Then added, “I need a pep talk. I need for some right things to happen.”
In that instant, You prompted me to ask a simple question, Lord: “What are some things you have done ‘right’ lately?”
The list began… slowly, but surely. What a few little prods along the way: “What else?”
Along the way, You also prompted me to sprinkle in another question: “With what result?” The good became visible.
My friend is just beginning to discover what it means to walk with You, Lord. So quoting a Scripture, no matter how relevant, would not have been received. Instead, we just lived a Scripture… a very relevant one.
“… whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable — if anything is excellent or praiseworthy — think about such things.” (Philippians 4:8)
Through those simple questions, my friend started to think differently… even just a little.
Nothing else had changed. The setbacks were still there; they hadn’t been resolved. They were still part of my friend’s present reality. But now, there was a bigger Reality on my friend’s radar screen. The conclusion “I can’t do anything right” was now obviously false.
My friend was not totally ready to give up dwellling on the setbacks. Sometimes, for whatever reason, we camp out there. I get it. Been there, done that.
Even so, something had changed in the brief time we had been thinking about those “right” things. My friend became less adamant about that initial conclusion. The earlier declaration — “I can’t do anything right” — became “It just seemed like I can’t do anything right.”
Now that’s progress!
You did more than hint at the benefit of thinking differently. You promised an Empowering Result that will come whenever we do.
“And the peace of God will be with you.” (Philippians 4:9b)
With Your peace, Lord, we can be ready to face any — every — day. Any — every — setback.
“God is our Refuge and Strength, an Ever-present Help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear…” (Psalm 46:1,2a)
Thanks for Your help today, Abba… and for Your help every day to come.
Sipping from a glass half FULL,