Life is amazing, are you missing it?
By: Elizabeth L. Creecy
Resolution One: I will live for God. Resolution Two: If no one else does, I still will.
— Jonathan Edwards
Life is extraordinary. We are given such a short time to honestly appreciate life, even though God designed us to live for 120 years.
Life is one of a kind, a unique opportunity that can never happen twice. Life is filled with innumerable amounts of beautiful moments, moments that one can easily miss. I think COVID has helped many of us understand how precious and short life is. I am not ignoring the chaos that COVID has brought; however, I believe COVID has helped people clearly see what is really important to them.
However, it’s essential not to disregard this fact: You can never get a moment back! Please don’t be foolish! When it expires, it permanently expires.
Of course, you may experience similar moments in the future. Still, that moment – that exact moment is only available to share once. Praise the Lord, our God – the God of the highest – redeems all things to work for good (Romans 8:28)! This is excellent news for believers. Why? Because you will mess up or miss something in life, but God redeems all things to work for the greater good! Therefore we always win!
Think about it this way. Life is forever moving forward – you cannot go backward. It’s one time, permanently moving forward, not stopping for anyone. You are only ever 40 years, four months, and six days once. When that day ends, it is gone forever.
However, you get 24 hours, 1,440 minutes, and 86,400 seconds TO CHOOSE how you will spend your day, and then create that reality. In that same amount of time, you also get to make choices, and those choices will shape your reality and life. If you don’t like your life, then start making NEW, DIFFERENT AND CONSCIOUS DECISIONS!
You will work to create your most dominant thoughts (Proverbs 23:7) – this is how fear becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Your choices, even at a thought level, are responsible for how you respond or react.
Now each day, you have a binary choice. (1)You can either choose to focus and find positive, joyful, life-filled moments, or (2)you can choose to be anxious, worried, angry, and stressed out all the time. In short, you either pick to live in God’s spirit with the mind of Christ or out of the spirit of fear, where only death, suffering, and destruction exists.
Whatever you choose, you will create!
Either way, life is happening. Life will not stop for you! If you choose to live and think like Christ, something unique happens. When you focus only on positive thoughts, you will find positive stimuli. God designed our brains to work for us. There’s something called the Reticular Activity System (RAS) in your brain. It filters in and out the stimuli you put into it. Your self-talk, what you expose yourself to, and the things buried in your heart directly influence the content your mind brings to your awareness, both consciously and unconsciously.
Again, this is why God tells you so many times to hide His Word in your heart so that you might not sin against Him (Psalm 119:11). It is also why Paul reminds us in Philippians 4:8 to think about things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, or worthy of praise. If what you are meditating on does not fit into any of these buckets, then I’d argue you probably need to let that thought go or tell that thought to Be Gone in Jesus’ name!
Let me explain what I am saying here with an example…
Ever gone car shopping? What starts to happen? You begin to feel like everyone in the world has that car you are considering! It’s like everywhere you turn, you see that car! This is your Reticular Activity System working with you. Since you were contemplating that car model, your brain will bring to your attention that car every time you pass it!
When you consciously engage in God’s word and positive thinking, the same will happen. Your brain will alert you of all of the positive and godly things happening. Yes, you will still see negatives, but not to the same extent.
Have you noticed that negative people usually only focus on and talk about negative things?
It will feel as if you have rose-colored glasses on, as you will find yourself seeing the optimistic solution-minded side of situations. You will also start to see God working more in your life. Remember, in John 10:27, Jesus says that His sheep know and listen to His voice, and they do follow Him. The more you tell yourself you know and hear God’s voice, the more you will begin! But the opposite will work too.
You start to see just how extraordinary, beautiful, and precious life is. You begin to see how God is for you, so who can be against you (Romans 8:31)? You begin to see all that you have and all that you can be grateful for. God wants you to give thanks in all circumstances (1 Thess 5:18). However, that’s really hard to do when you have a negative mindset or outlook on life!
I personally get much comfort from watching animals be. I specifically love to watch squirrels for some reason. I find it fascinating how nature and animals don’t worry, and if they don’t, why are you?
Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow [seed] nor reap [the harvest] nor gather [the crops] into barns, and yet your heavenly Father keeps feeding them. Are you not worth much more than they? (Matthew 6:26 AMP)
You are so important to the Father. You are the apple of His eye (Psalm 17:8).
God does not want you to worry or think negatively because of the damage it does to you physically, mentally, and spiritually. Jesus is your Savior. Everything Jesus asks you to do, He knows you are capable of doing, and that it will save you, not destroy you. The Godhead will never ask you to do something without first giving you the power to do it (John 5:8). Some of us are not walking in that power or authority (Philippians 4:13; Ephesians 3:20; Romans 16:25). Your Father in Heaven wants to give you life – He wants to provide you with good, good things (James 1:17)! However, God honors free will.
It’s important to remember that you may need to train (renew) your mind to think differently so you can TAKE what God is offering you instead of passively waiting for Him to move. Some of you are praying for things that God has already given you, and when this happens, it’s an indicator you need to renew your mind.
Sometimes, God is waiting for YOU to move!
If you choose death over life, then I must ask: Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life (Matthew 6:27)?
Is worrying bringing you comfort or torment? Remember, things that bring torment are from the devil. There is a real enemy that wants to destroy you (John 10:10). Trust the Father and cast your cares on to Him, for He cares for you (1 Peter 5:7).
Life is special. Life needs to be cherished. Life needs to be lived intentionally, not passively. Don’t chase the wind either (Ecc. 2:11). It is hard to relish or be present in the moment if you choose not to be present. Choosing not to be present occurs when you are too busy in your head about the past or the future; when you’re too busy worrying about what if…
God tells us to take no thought for tomorrow because tomorrow will bring its own issues (Matthew 6:34). Now God is a redeemer, but He is not going to bless you so you can keep sinning. Some of you are your worst enemy because you choose to hold on to your pride ( Proverbs 13:10) and victim thinking (1 Thessalonians 5:18).
A victim mentality is when you blame everyone else for what happens in your world). It is when a person thinks that the future only holds terrible things for them.
But God says:
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope (Jeremiah 29:11).
When you choose to renew your mind and allow God to transform you (Romans 12:2), you will start to cherish life. You also begin to walk in the mind of Christ. But, YOU have to desire to be like Christ. YOU will have to do the work too. Christ does most of it – remember His yoke is easy and His burden is light (Matthew 11:30).
You can also choose the latter, where no matter what is happening around you, you see your life as terrible. You see, the people who love you the most hurting you. You see how people are letting you down. You see how life is awful, and you focus on how unhappy you are. You allow your feelings of unforgiveness, bitterness, depression, worry, and stress to weigh you down where you become their prey. This is precisely what the devil wants. He wants you oppressed by the Spirit of Fear.
Whatever you choose – know your brain will help find it!
Of course, one day, you may wake up or see through the fog of darkness. You may start to question some of the lies you have been sold. Once you become calm and no longer focused on yourself, your crappy life, or fears – all darkness – you start to realize some things. Like how many memorable moments you might have missed or taken for granted because your pride, fear, and carnal ways seemed more critical. It’s okay. Repent and start to renew your mind.
I am telling you life is so extraordinary, and you do not get repeats or second chances.
If you choose to have a Christ mindset, you then appreciate and are grateful for every moment. You will start to be overcome with joy. You would not be able to outrun joy even if you tried. Why? The most significant difference between the two scenarios I described is that one person focuses on life as a whole. The other is focusing only on himself or herself. When you focus only on yourself and how life only affects you, you have limited yourself only to see a slither of the world surrounding you.
By pride comes nothing but strife, But with the well-advised is wisdom (proverbs 13:10).
Life is more powerful than just what is going on in your life. The world doesn’t revolve around you. You are to give thanks and the glory to God always (1 Cor. 10:31).
This year, I encourage you to focus on finding joy, positivity, and things you are grateful for in every moment of your life. Start to consciously direct your thoughts to only be on things that are lovely, just, pure, admirable, right, noble, and anything worthy of praise (Philippians 4:8). If you are fighting with someone, lay your pride down, and look for understanding and agreement (Amos 3:3). Or if you are in a conversation, you find it boring to find something about that person you appreciate and are grateful for and focus on it. By doing this, you will find yourself walking out of that negative sensation.
We are all interconnected. We are all going through internal suffering. Kindness, positivity, and gratitude must be spread to reflect God’s light through us – His chosen people.
Life has to be fully lived in the present with an attitude of joy and appreciation. Or the once-in-a-lifetime experience of life will pass you by, and you will not even see it go.
The LORD is my strength and my shield; My heart trusted in Him, and I am helped; Therefore, my heart greatly rejoices, And with my song I will praise Him (Psalm 28:7).
Embrace a Christ-like attitude. Be positive, compassionate, unconditionally loving, joyful, helpful, and emerge yourself in living today!
Lastly, if you mess up, forgive yourself. Give yourself mercy as Jesus would do. Repent and even ask God to redeem it and then move on, trusting that God will do what He knows is best for you and the greater good.