Today I’m revisiting a post from a couple of years ago.
It’s around this time of year that I battle headwinds and rain as I cycle to work. As I’ve pushed against the wind in the past I’ve thought about the difficulties we face on the journey of life and how they can impact us.
I guess that a lot of the time we would prefer life to just roll along smoothly without hassles but we know that’s unlikely to happen. To be truthful, while I’d rather not battle headwinds all the time, I don’t really mind them that much. I know that when I’m pushing hard and seemingly getting nowhere that I’m building strength. I enjoy the challenge of getting to my destination knowing that I’ve persevered and I have a sense of achievement that I’d never have if it was all downhill with a tailwind.
Kicking Down Doors
As I think about how much good those tough rides are doing me, I start wondering about the reasoning that says that we know we’re following the right direction for our life when circumstances are easy or when things ‘fall into place’. We talk about God ‘opening doors’ and ‘shutting others’. Well, sometimes I think we need to discover what God wants us to do, which isn’t always an simple thing, and then go out and kick down a few of those closed doors.
I cringe when I hear people using easy circumstances as God’s stamp of approval. Don’t get me wrong, I believe that sometimes God does give us an easy passage to accomplish his purposes but if we expect that to always be the case I think we’ll be disappointed more often than not. I do believe, and it’s been my experience, that God will sometimes open a way that previously seemed permanently shut and we need to be sensitive to that and walk through when it’s right but not just assume that if we do the right thing that life will simply fit neatly together like a jigsaw puzzle.
Of course taking the opposite view, that following the right path will always be difficult and that taking the easy way is always wrong is equally flawed.
In the end, I believe that stopping at closed doors and walking through open ones isn’t always a recipe for right living. We need to be wary of who’s hand is on those open doors.
What’s your experience?
Have you had to struggle to find the way through? Have you had to kick down a few closed doors along the way? Have you walked through an open door only to find that it’s produced more problems than it has solved? Have you also experienced those times when God has very clearly guided you through an open door?
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How do you keep track of the days and weeks that seem to fly past at warp speed?
Almost two months have already rushed past in 2008. Our brand new year is now well and truly underway and we’re left wondering where all the time has gone.
Wouldn’t it be nice if we could stop the world for a week or two so we could catch up? Unfortunately we don’t have that luxury so we need to find workable ways to make our time work for us rather than it being a threat.
Do you have any tricks or tips that help you establish routine for yourself or your household?
Life Skills Trainer, Jill Bonanno, joined me on Friday on 98.5 Sonshine FM for our weekly radio segment, Simply Living. We looked at finding a workable routine for our lives.
For some people it’s a whiteboard, others a diary, some use a computer programme or a portable device of some kind while others plot our their days on a fridge. Whichever way we do it, having some kind of routine ensures that we don’t come to the end of yet another year wondering what happened. Taking control of our lives, while still allowing for spontaneity, helps us to live life to the full with much less stress.
How do you stay organised? How far do you plan ahead? What do you find are the advantages of planning ahead and sticking with some kind of routine?
We discussed routines for ourselves and our families and how a few simple ideas can make life a lot more livable. I’d love your input. Please listen to our discussion by clicking the play button on the audio player in this post before leaving your own ideas in the comments section.
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I’ve been thinking recently about growing up and seeing cranes across the city skyline.
When I saw huge cranes constructing huge buildings I used to think how untidy they made the city look. I used to look forward to the day when the city would be finished so that the cranes would be gone. I wanted my beautiful city to look neat and complete.
As I grew older I realised that there would always be cranes. Old buildings pass their usefulness and are replaced by new buildings. The population grows and new facilities are needed. It’s all a necessary part of progress.
I think a lot of us feel the same way about the struggles in our lives. We look ahead to the time when all the cranes will be gone, when the construction will be finished and we can enjoy a ‘neat’ existence. It’s not going to happen this side of eternity.
In every area of our lives we need to realise that the struggles and disappointments will always be there – it’s part of our progress. If we ‘put our lives on hold’ until the struggles are sorted, we’ll never learn to live.
Living is all about what we do with those setbacks, how we cope with them, and more importantly, who we turn to to help us through.
Of course there is coming a time when the cranes will be taken away and the construction will be over. Once the building is all done we have an eternity to enjoy paradise with our Lord. I’m looking forward to resting from all the building.
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