Looking Up and Out

Why is it so hard for me to do the things I know I should? And why is it so easy to do the things I know I shouldn’t?  Even Paul thousands of years ago struggled with this and it is still a struggle today.

We all have similar struggles and challenges. Yes, the details might be different, but the root, the core of our strugges are very similar if not exactly the same. Laziness, pride, selfishness, lack of self-control. We all share in these things and they always lead to negative consequences and problems. Yet, we all fall prey to them over and over and over again.

We were created for so much more than we settle for and it is so much easier to fall into the easy, the natural. We can be selfish, prideful, and lazy without even trying. It takes almost no effort at all and certainly no self-discipline. Thankfully, we serve a powerful God who created us and thus understands us. He even became like one of us so He has felt what we feel. He has experienced everything we ever have or ever will and He loves us more than we can comprehend. Our God will never give up on us and He will never stop loving us. In fact, He will give me opportunities and chances to be more like Him. To lay aside my tendency to be lazy and selfish and to put others first.

My first real taste of this came when I became a parent. I was overjoyed to put someone else’s needs and desires far above my own. Since then, God has shown me that there are people all around me who need a smile, a hug, and some encouragement. I have to look past myself and see those around me-then I can rise above the mundane and ordinary and truly become something like my savior.

Yes, it is easier to simply think of myself, but it is so much more rewarding and fulfilling when I push past that tendency and see the world through God’s eyes, looking at those around me with love and asking myself, “what can I do to help?”  Instead of keeping my focus on myself, looking up and out and asking “How can I make it better?”  It is a struggle and a daily fight but thankfully, God promises to never leave us and His mercies are new every day. I can seek Him, be filled with His strength and He is faithful to help me each and every day.

Lord, I surrender my desires and plans for this day and ask for Your guidance and help to see those around me with fresh eyes. Help me love others the way You love me.

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