Out of darkness will come light

Recently I have been reflecting on my own situation and starting to see how easy it is to slip into old habits of shutting out God.

Whenever I am focusing on my financial security, focusing on preventing anything from upsetting my day, I am running the risk of shutting God out. This might seem hard to figure out, but I can see this happening in my own life. The more I worry about money issues, the more I worry about family issues, the more I worry about health issues, work issues, relationship issues, the more I am digging a bigger and deeper hole for myself which slowly but surely lessens God’s light. All of these concerns drag us into a material world where we believe that we have total control of everything, yet in reality, we don’t. We don’t even have control of our own life span. None of us will live forever. Our belief that we have total control of our lives is more fantasy than fact.

The challenge to let go of our securities and to trust the guidance of God is a faith transition. We need to make deliberate decisions to do this, day in and day out. This decision starts with praise. Every day we need to focus on praising God for everything. This means everything. Every upset that comes your way needs to be praised. This could mean praising God for your work, not just the fact that you have a job, but praising God for the tedious nature of your job, for the upset you feel towards your customers or your boss or your fellow workers. Giving thanks involves the whole package. The more you give praise, the more areas of your life you will be challenged to give praise for.

As strange as it might appear, giving praise for everything is the corner stone for enlightenment. The more we hold onto some thoughts and refuse to give thanks for them, the less the chance we have of allowing God to work through our lives. We will always be challenged to go deeper with our praise and we will go through times where we will not see the errors of our ways, but if we are feeling the gloom and doom of life then this is a hint that we need to shift our focus back to praise. Praise will not come easy when we are feeling this way but out of the darkness will eventually rise the light.

True praise involves everything. True praise involves thanking God for everything in our lives. The cross of life will always be around, yet we can either choose to die on that cross forever or choose to rise from that cross, just as Jesus did. The choice is ours.

We walk the way of the cross in knowing that we will rise above everything in this life, and into the next life, just as Jesus did before us.

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