Don’t Pat Yourself on the Back

Everyone has had one of those days when nothing seems to be going right; you forget to bring lunch, forget that meeting, forget about that quiz, or you just totally mess up. Well, I, for one, am going to be honest; I’ve had those days… a lot of those days. Often, it seems that those bad days closely follow some pretty awesome days where everything was going great for me and I could do anything I set my mind to. But it is exactly that mind set that knocks me off my “high-horse”… every time. I was living those good days as though I was the one who made them good, instead of glorifying the God who is good, and Who has given me every good thing that I possess. “And such trust have we through Christ to God-ward: not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God.” (2 Corinthians 3:4-5).

Now, I can’t say that I was stuck up for all of those days that I experienced God’s goodness and relished in a “spiritual high,” but I will say that I started to get comfortable, neglecting the little things just because things were going so good; little things like reading my Bible as often or deeply as I normally would, singing Scripture songs, or just writing about life with my Savior. I got into the routine of God’s ministry, where I went through the motions, patted myself on the back for being a “good girl,” and made sure to pray every night. But my heart was slipping, my pride was making me forget that God’s ministry is more than motions and even more than prayer, it is a combination of faith, worship, prayer, service, study, and fasting.

Worship takes time. Praying takes time. Selfless service takes time. Studying takes time. But faith places time in the hands of the One who made time, Who was there at the beginning of time, and Who knows the exact length of the time that we have left. And fasting is just giving God something that wasn’t ours to begin with. No one’s perfect. No one can have it altogether, but in the middle of our good days as well as in the middle of our bad days, we can all choose to glorify the One who placed us here and chose to shower us with His grace and love. Our Abba knows that we have to get up early for work or school or an appointment, but He also knows that without spiritual strength, we are going to fall; “Pride goes before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall” (Proverbs 16:18). God does not want us to fall or be so caught up in ourselves that we miss out on His awesome plan for each one of us; to abide in His love and to show the world that life comes from Christ’s love. Especially in those bad days, choosing to glorify the One Who formed each seemingly insignificant human being for a glorious purpose may be the most awesome opportunity to fulfill our purpose that we may ever be given. Though we have fallen by trying to skip up the stairs on one leg, yet God sees that we are broken, chooses to use us where we are, and set us on the best path once more. Confidence or urgency is not a bad thing, but if you’re placing confidence in yourself and your own strength, you’re going to stumble and fall.

If you’re having a bad day, don’t blame God, cling to Him; He is faithful to set you upright. If you’re having a good day, don’t get caught up in your glory, get caught up in God’s glory and His plan for you and for all of His creation. Too often, whether on a good or a bad day, we get caught in the mode of thinking so much of ourselves, our own ambitions, victories, vices, or failures, but we need to be “Looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith. Who, for the joy that was set before Him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:2). Endure through the pain, endure through the temptations, endure through the mistakes, and keep looking to Jesus.

Our days are worth nothing if we have not surrendered them to the maker of time, the giver of breath and life, and the One Who invented miracles. On the good days, let us glory in Christ! “But he that glories, let him glory in the Lord. For not he that commends himself is approved, but whom the Lord commends.” (2 Corinthians 10:17-18). When you look at yourself in the mirror, do you see a person who seeks his or her own glory, or the glory of the One Who made you? Will you be able to say to yourself, your family, and your friends; “But by the grace of God I am what I am: and His grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me“? (1 Corinthians 15:10)

Yesterday I made mistakes. Today I made mistakes. But God has chosen to bless me in spite of those mistakes, causing me to grow and bringing me back to His light. No matter what the day brings for me or for you, let us choose to grow in Christ, seek His face, and take strength in His sufficiency.

If you have questions or topics you want me to write about, or you just want to chat, then send me an email or post a message on any of my pages.





Published by: Sarah Jo

Growing up is a taxing process (sometimes, literally), but I have chosen to grow in Christ and in His grace. He is so faithful to me and I have no room to complain, so I seek to show my gratitude through writing blog posts and songs, and speaking forth my gratitude in front of coworkers, friends, family, and total strangers. I am a little lost, but completely found; a child in the faith, and taking huge steps. I have so much to learn, but the point is that I will get there by the grace of my Abba.

Categories Let Your Light Shine Before Men...Tags, , , , , , 1 Comment

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