“I just want a break,” I said, venting to a dear friend.
As I recalled a series of setbacks over the past couple of years, I finally heard aloud how I’d been thinking for months. I heard my ungratefulness. Instead of recalling the way that God had kept me through adverse situations, I had dwelled on the negative.
If we’re not careful, we can fool ourselves into believing that life is supposed to easy. When we think this way, we are thrown into a tailspin, knocked off of our square, and utterly dumbfounded when we face trials and hardships. When we somehow believe that we are owed a trouble-free existence, we deceive ourselves. However, if we understand that we aren’t promised an easy, trouble-free existence, we are one step closer to being prepared to overcome adversity.
Jesus tells His disciples, “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33). Because we live in the world, we are going to have to navigate through hard times. All of us have to experience pain, heartache, loss, and suffering sometimes. Nobody is exempt. However, Jesus has promised us that He has overcome the world. In other words, trials and heartaches aren’t the final answer for believers. We are overcomers because we are His people, resting, hoping, and believing in Jesus. We are victorious!
The enemy seeks to rob us of our peace, and while we don’t need to dwell on this, we need to be aware of it. Throughout scripture, Jesus promises us His peace, but we can’t expect to have it if we aren’t in fellowship with Him. When we don’t pray, read and study His Word, and fellowship with other believers, we should, we put ourselves at risk of the being swallowed up by the cares of life.
When we feel like we need a break, we need to make sure that we break from the right things. We need to break away from pleasing anyone first, except for God. We need to break away from bad habits, negative thinking, and useless vices like jealousy, dislike, disregard, favoritism, etc. We should break off any thinking that causes us to be friends with the world. James 4:4 tells us, “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.” There is no way that we can be pleasing and acceptable to the ungodly and live for God. No person, place, or thing should come before God. Making a clean break with the world, and fully engaging to please God, gives us peace that surpasses understanding.
So often, when we’re in the midst of a battle, we get tired when we feel that we’ve been doing all we know to do that’s right. We just want a break from the pressure, pain, or situation. However, especially during times of distress, we need to be sure that we’re anchored in Him. Instead of turning to the world, ungodly people and negative thinking patterns, actions or habits, we need to remember to go to the only lasting source of life, help, strength, peace, and joy.
Overcoming adversity is something that we can expect to do, every single time, with Jesus on our side. We will have trials, but with Him, we have already overcome. When you need a break, as I have, turn to Him. Rest in His promises. Let your break be time spent in His Word, prayer, and fellowship with other believers. Try not to waste time complaining about your problems—it only magnifies them. Instead, I’ve been reminded through fellowship with other believers, to profess and confess His Word. What a difference it makes! With a renewed perspective, we can engage, fully armed to overcome in any situation. We win, every single time!
Blessings and Love,