Good Morning friends! Yesterday was a gorgeous day here in Chicago, 50° and sunny, I sure hope you got out for a walk to enjoy the day if you live here. It was phenomenal to get some sun. Of course, I hate to say it, but snow is on the way yet again, hopefully this will be the last time old man winter dumps on our spring. Oh how I envy those of you who live in warmer climates.
As I was lamenting over the impending snow last night, God brought to mind how we tend to desire what someone else has, either their lifestyle, their possessions, gadgets, or even their walk with God. We think our life would be better if __________(you fill in the blank). We begin beating ourselves up over our lack “of” instead of rejoicing in the provisions God supplies that are tailor-made for us.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)
God is for us and although we may not “have” everything we think we need, he supplies all we need in each moment of our lives. Take for example the Israelites in the desert. God provided them with enough mana for each day. He knew what they needed-yes they needed food, but they also needed to rely on God and trust he knew what was best for them. To put God first in their lives and not fantasize about what they thought they needed.
I think that is what we tend to do as well. We fantasize over how we see others living, which leads into self-pity and then can lead to a lifestyle outside the boundaries God sets for us. I think Oswald Chambers puts it best, “If we give way to self-pity and indulge in the luxury of misery, we remove God’s riches from our lives.”
I have noticed recently, in myself and others, a trend toward envying another’s christian walk and the attempt to try to replicate their spiritual practices. We feel we don’t pray enough, serve enough, read our bibles enough, so we try to add another spiritual practice into our daily rhythm of life. Spiritual practices are a win, win, but trying to force fit them in just because someone else is doing it is not what God calls us into.
You can see in Jeremiah 29:11, the Lord declares he has plans for us-these plans are tailor-made for each individual and also include our spiritual practices. We may stumble and fall until we find the right fit, but we need to lean into God, asking his help to discover the ones that fit our unique character. Bible reading and prayer are a must, but the way that looks for each of us is different. I journal, others do not, is it beneficial, it is for me, but maybe not for everyone. God will help each of us find the right way to incorporate spiritual practices in our life-a meaningful way that promotes our spiritual growth and honors him in all we do.
Let’s give ourselves permission to stop comparing and instead ask God help us discover how to best fit spiritual practices into our daily life. He is faithful to answer such a prayer. (Philippians 4:6)
Won’t you take a moment today, when you are not in a hurry and distracted, to sit down and open God’s word. Ask him to show you himself in a new way through his word, and then boldly pray for him to open your eyes to how he would have you honor him daily in spiritual practices that fit the way he’s wired you.