As we are all trying to be better this new year, as we are all trying to eat better, exercise more, focus on relationships, spend our money wiser, or organize our homes and lives, we can start feeling discouraged and exhausted pretty quickly. We put so much pressure on ourselves to make this year different. To make this year the year that we do everything right.
I find so much encouragement in the fact that God wants what is best for me and that He sees me as good and right already. The hard part is seeing ourselves this way. There are a lot of “If/then” statements running through our heads that make us feel inadequate today and always on the cusp of something great tomorrow.
“If I just made relationships a priority, then my life would be more enriched.”
“If I stopped having poor self-image, then I would live confidently.”
“If I spent less money on eating out or gave more money away, then I would live with financial freedom.”
Although these statements aren’t necessarily false, they can bring more discouragement than encouragement. You see, when we focus on who we are not, or what our life is not, we tend to strive for change out of frustration. Instead of striving for something better, we are striving to be different than the way we currently view ourselves.
But here’s the truth: You already are better.
That may seem odd, but it’s because that’s how God created you! He created you to be capable, good, intelligent, creative, and hard working. He created us in His image, and He is all of these things. Yes, there’s also part of us that isn’t these things, but God is working all of that out in us. God is doing the work, and we just need to do the trusting.
“And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” (Philippians 1:6)
When we are focused on knowing and loving God and on how He sees us (and others), we are focused on the right thing and can strive to be better without discouragement. We can look at our future with hope and excitement.
“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” (Isaiah 43:18-19)
God is doing something new in you! Focus on Him and trust Him in this. 🙂 Maybe you don’t always feel like “You’ve got this”, but remember that you do because “He’s got this”!
How are you able to have hope for your future? What is God doing in you right now? Share with us in the comments!