I don’t care how goal oriented and positive minded you are; there will be times that life gives you sour grapes. But sometimes, we can not control what happens to us; only how we look at it. The circumstances of our life are not always of our own dictate or design but our attitude is.
There is a narrative of one of Paul’s experiences in the New Testament that really helps illustrate this point. While trapped in the dreariness of a prison cell, he and his brothers of faith sang. Yes, they sang. Rather than bemoan the harshness of the terrible situation they found themselves in. They found the courage and inspiration to sing songs of celebration. The outcome of this account is their freedom and a demonstration of God’s willingness to help them in their circumstance. How often this message can help us.
By looking at the blessings within us, rather than only the challenges around us; doors of deliverance often open.
When I first wrote the framework of these thoughts a couple of years ago, chances that I had given up on had come back into the horizon of my life. A new approach on life was what caused this. And a new approach was what I needed to see these changes take place. I tell you truly; this kind of change is often easy to talk about and hard to do. It was very costly for me to make this life transformation. It was worth it but it was not easy.
The problem with a new attitude is that we have to get rid of the old one. The best analogy I can think of to explain this idea is: We must change the oil…… In a car, when you get rid of the old, you must immediately put in the new. You can not just recycle the old oil and the car continue to perform. You must completely change the oil, not just refresh the old.
This would be difficult enough were the need transparent. But many of our problems are not so clear. Our problems are not always what is so evident to us. But our problems are usually the issues that are not so clear. The problem that most often haunts us is the problem behind the problem.
And the problem behind the problem is that we can’t change the oil, until we recognize that the old stuff is just that; old stuff. We hang on to the old. We Even deny that it is a problem. We stay tore up, messed up and upset; because we deny that we have a problem. The only way for lost chances to return (& they don’t always) is to approach life with a new outlook.
With a new outlook; even if missed opportunities do not return; renewed possibilities often will. This brings
me to the elephant hiding in the room. The real question is: How are you looking at things today? Perhaps the answer to a new you is a new outlook based on some honest, deep soul-searching.
Sometimes, we can not just keep on with the status quo and expect life to be good. Life is not static. It requires change. Sometimes, it even requires that we stop, to change. There was an important season in my life that I could not go forward, until I stopped what I was doing. And a major cease, halt and re-evaluation was needed for me to make needed course re-directions.
I literally had to stop my whole world and take a look at my life for the purpose of changing it. This strategy is with much historical precedent. A sabbatical has been long recognized in many circles as a solid, healthy way to change. Is a sabbatical needed for you to get rid of the old, so you can make room for the new?
Do you need to stop your world for a pause, before you plunge further in a misguided direction? Only you can answer this question. But I can help you with a healthy word of advice, if you decide you need such a season to rejuvenate. Remember, We don’t need cleaned oil. We need new oil…
Maybe this BEAM (article) has not answered your questions but has only confirmed to you that you have questions, you need to answer,before you go further. If so, then it has served its purpose.
May God help you make the course corrections you need; to have a happy, productive and fulfilled life.!