“God, I pray, I read my word, I serve in my ministry, I feel like I’m doing all I can do. How am I still stuck!?”
Has that been your prayer recently? Over the last several years, I have met many people who feel lost, alone, afraid and overwhelmed. They committed their life to Christ, yet they do not think it has given them the freedom they have prayed for. If that is you, I would like to share some encouragement today. I often say to them, “Beloved, you aren’t actually stuck, you are in process. God is growing you up in this season. Growing is hard, but it will be so worth it!”
I’ll speak for myself in saying that sometimes I pray for God to take things away from me that I won’t let go of. I ask God to have his way, but I still want my own way. I ask God to usher me into a new season, yet my mind feels stuck in an old one. Have you been there? If this is resonating with you, please know that God brings light to these contradictions within us to mature us, heal us, and make us whole in those areas. See James 1:2-6.
In Matthew 11:28, Jesus says, “Come to me all who are weary and heavy laden and I will give you rest.” I don’t know about you, but I feel weary at times and I sure do need the rest of God. Jesus gives us the instructions to take the issues we are struggling with and lay them completely on Him. Not partially. Completely. Ask yourself this honest question, have you been laying your issues down completely? Mostly trusting God leaves us feeling a little stuck! Completely trusting God allows us to walk fully in the freedom we have already been given.
God knows you better than you know yourself. He, better than anyone, knows what you are capable of. You are the healthiest version of yourself that you have ever been, and He is proud of you! God is not punishing you in this season, He just wants more for you. Your loving father is encouraging you to continue to let go of the pains and burdens that He is meant to bear. He wants you to heal, grow, and mature in his loving presence. Growth and maturity require Him to show you areas where you need to build trust and faith in Him.
Think for a moment about the story of Peter walking towards Jesus on the water in Matthew 14:22-33. Peter becomes the second man in history to walk on water! Amazing! He has enough faith and trust in Jesus to take steps of faith on the water. Then, in a moment, he sees the wind and begins to sink.
As Jesus pulls Peter out of the water, he says, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?”
Notice He said “little faith” not “no faith.” Peter had the most faith he had ever had in his life, yet Jesus wanted more for him. A moment of sinking turned into a moment of being risen with Christ. Jesus wanted him free from the limitations and burdens that life experience placed upon him. We become more and more aware of our freedom as we take steps of faith toward Jesus. The disciples who walked with Jesus had to learn, grow, and mature during their walk with Him. They didn’t “have it all figured out” the day Jesus said, “Come with me.” Neither will we.
Please know that Jesus really did change your life on day one. He saved you from everything that was holding you back. Your life transformation, however, is a journey with Jesus that takes place one day at a time. He uses every part of the process to transform you by renewing your mind (Romans 12:2). Sometimes your feelings give you a false sense of where you are in the process. You are not stuck at this moment, you are free. Look around. Where are the bars? Where are the chains? You are free! Going through the maturing process is not a prison, it is a pathway to the fulfilled promises of God.
Let me say to you again today that you are not who you used to be! You are better, stronger, and healthier than you’ve ever been!
God is not done with you yet. Let that truth wash over you and renew your thinking today. God has not forgotten you. He will finish what He started in your life (Philippians 1:6).
Written by Maurice F. Martin
Maurice is a bestselling author and a spiritual life coach. His second book, Your But is Too Big: 7 Principles That Empower You To Heal Past Hurts and Get Motivated to Find Purpose was written to help you heal your past wounds, discover who you really are, and live a peaceful, purpose-driven life.
Learn more at www.mauricefmartin.com