I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. -John 16:33 (NIV)

Our walk can be so challenging and hopeless sometimes. Not just momentarily, but for entire seasons.

But it’s important to adjust your perspective so that you see opportunity in crisis…that every rose has its thorn…that every dark cloud has a silver lining. In other words, that He has blessings laced into the trials you face, and it’s actually your privilege to be victorious in the valleys by discerning those blessings and making Him known in how you tread through those valleys.

Let’s say you are constantly in the presence of someone who condemns and judges you…shows you up in front of others…puts you down and equates your mistakes with your character. Your opportunity there is to let God channel His grace through you to not fire back. An opportunity to let His wisdom guard your tongue so you only let out words to uplift and build up. Resist the urge to add one…more…thing.

Of great importance to any believer when facing challenges is to not look inward, and to fall prey to self-pity when feeling wronged. Instead, keep your eyes on Him and let His peace overcome you. If you don’t, and you choose to get mired in your circumstance in your own strength, you will most certainly fall to behaviors and responses that will probably not honor Him.

In other words, it’s not about you.

Remember, no matter what or who is slinging arrows at you, it’s not about you. It’s not even about them. It’s about Him, and how you respond can make Him known. Remember how He girds you and fires you up from within. Remind yourself of this first thing in the morning, and be thankful for it. Remember how life was before you accepted Him? Never again!

Today’s soundtrack

Moriah Peters’ “Brave” is uplifting by voicing just how we feel when we’re downtrodden…and to ask Him to empower us to be brave.