“Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus.  But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” (Matthew 14:29-30)

Circumstances—situations, events, conditions, position or surroundings. It’s when I choose to focus on my situation that I begin to fear. When Peter’s eyes were fixed on Christ, he walked on water, and when he looked at the waves, he sunk. We are no different.

We need a new perspective. We take so much for granted. We are so blessed, no matter our circumstances and in spite of our sufferings. Each and every day I allow myself to be put into a position where I am stressed and torn, triangulated and burdened. I focus on how my circumstances make me feel, how they put me in a place where I feel overwhelmed and unsure. I’ve prayed for God to remove me. His answer was, “stay”,  at least for now. I have purpose there, I recognize it, and until God’s purposes have been fulfilled I will remain. So what is my choice? To grumble and complain? If I wasn’t so focused on myself, my expectations and plans, if I would surrender myself to the purposes of God and not my own, this burden I chose to carry, would be lifted.

I pray for a new focus for the New Year. I pray God will grow me up, to a new place in the promise land a place residing above my circumstances. It’s not easy… I have found the warfare to be intense; an all and out war for my thoughts. Fear, anxiety and discouragement seek to consume us—WE MUST NOT LET THEM. The enemy cannot rob us of our salvation but he can try to steal our joy, he can tarnish our testimonies and dim our lights…if we allow him.

We must discipline ourselves… We must daily fill our hearts and minds with the truth of God’s word. Commit to that. We must turn our focus. When I focus on my circumstances, instead of Christ, I begin to stress, and to worry, that’s when my mind runs away with my thoughts. When I take matters into my own hands, God’s voice is silenced amidst the clamor of myself. Fight the good fight with the truth of God’s word as we seek to be emptied of self and filled with the Spirit. Coming to the end of yourself, to the place you have nothing left to offer, is a good place to be. That’s when the Lord our God pours His spirit out upon us. We are more than conquerors and we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us!

~Kimberly Murray

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