How you spend your free time is very important.
It’s when you’re least paying attention and mindlessly watching Reality TV or surfing Facebook that you need to guard your heart the most. The devil is always busy and willing to whisper sweet lies into your ear that tell you that you aren’t good enough, that your circumstances have a direct effect on your life, or even worse- God will never deliver the promises that He’s made to you.
When you find that you have time on your hands, do you check in to see what others are doing or do you catch up on the things that matter to you (for example, painting, reading, spending quiet time with God, etc.)? When you unconsciously view in on the lives of others, you may begin to have mixed feelings on that experience because Steve just received a promotion or Keisha just got engaged. Slowly, you start to feel worse and worse as you click through your timeline. You start to ask questions like, "Why haven’t I gotten a promotion yet?" or, "Why am I still single?" These types of questions doubt God, Who is nothing but true and faithful. What simply begins as innocent "Facebooking" or “Instagramming” turns into you believing that your life is boring, your career isn't where it should be, or even the life assumption that you are not where you are supposed to be. When you recognize these sinking feelings in your stomach, I encourage you to close the laptop, put the cellphone down, and ask God to remove those feelings from your heart immediately.
Steve’s promotion and Keisha’s engagement have nothing to do with the blessings that God has for you! God is in the blessing business and He will never give something to someone else that He meant for you to have. The more time that you spend in God’s presence, the more God will speak to you and reveal the plan that He has for your life. When you truly commit to and develop a personal relationship with Christ on a daily basis, you will realize how serious God is about the calling that He has placed on your life, as well as how He wants you to fulfill your specific role in the Kingdom. Living this way will allow the blessings that others receive to no longer bother you, upset you, or place doubt in your mind about what God has in mind for you.
Sometimes we get frustrated because we’ve experienced personal struggle for what seems like a long time. We become indifferent when things aren’t going the way we planned, but we must remember is this: God will deliver us and we will be better equipped for similar life experiences down the road. No matter how hard things get, know that God is always looking for ways to develop you and expand you. Rest assured that all things in God’s timing are all the things that are truly best for you. Receiving a promotion or an engagement that you’re not ready for will hurt you more than help you.
"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future,” (Jeremiah 29:31).
“What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31)
So, what shall you say to adversity or challenges? Here's what I say: God is always in your corner and He’s working things out in your favor. Trust Him.