I’m not sure if there’s ever been a study on it, but I’m willing to bet that most people who have experienced success in their lives have done so with an element of faith in something greater than themselves. Just prior to writing this, I was running the plethora of my projects, duties and demands through my head. Thinking about everything requiring my attention within limited time spans was starting to make me feel overwhelmed. I’m sure most people can relate to that at one time or another. Perhaps that sounds like your life generally! It is unfathomable to me how people can cope with intense stress or despair without faith to give them hope. The world and it’s system is so demanding and full of failings. You can’t depend on money or any other facet of the system, nor even many people, because sooner or later, all of these things will fail you. Money is fleeting, systems can be corrupt or broken, people are imperfect and can’t always be there even if they mean well.
Of all things, I certainly wouldn’t want to push people away by giving the sense that I am trying to force my beliefs on them. That is not my intent. What you choose to believe is your choice. However, I would not be true to my convictions or my words if I did not give credit to the primary source of my own strength. I am a follower of Jesus. I refrain from simply saying “Christian,” because that term is so widely interpreted and misinterpreted. I try to be like Jesus. That is it. I believe Jesus is who He claimed to be – the only true Son of the living God. I believe that His death and resurrection is the only price that can purchase my ticket into heaven, because I can never be perfect on my own, and therefore need His help. I know that by humbly accepting His gift and sacrifice for me, I have a secure and wonderful future waiting for me. I also know that this same reassurance and peace is available to everyone, free of charge. It’s only a choice of whether or not they want to accept the gift.
This faith is what gives me hope in the most hopeless of circumstances. In any time of despair, anxiety or feelings of inadequacy, I know that I can just put all of my problems in God’s hands and He can handle it. I do the best with what I have and don’t worry about the rest. Every time I have chosen to stop fretting and carrying all the burdens on my own and trust Jesus to take care of me, He has always come through and provided, protected and healed me. Never has putting my faith and trust in God ever been regrettable, nor has it ever failed. I believe faith to be an integral part of a successful life and a key component to finding one’s true potential, joy and peace. I say this from personal experience, that is reaffirmed time and time again in my own life.
People who don’t have that mighty, perfect shoulder to lean on, the One and only person who can truly be with them anywhere, anytime without fail, are left to shoulder the world’s burdens, demands, people’s cruelty or expectations, personal doubts and self-criticism, etc. all by themselves. It can be very overwhelming, and many people crumble under the pressure and distress, which can occasionally lead to thoughts of suicide. We aren’t meant to go through life alone or be the savior for everyone else, or even ourselves, because sometimes we just can’t. Sure, sometimes other people can help, but ultimately, they can’t always be there either. Only God can be perfectly, 100% reliable to come through when needed, but He won’t force Himself on anyone either. He waits until He is invited.
I don’t mean to get into any sort of philosophical or doctrinal arguments or debates here. This is merely an expression of what helps me through the worst times of life, and also led me into some of the best times of life. Whether or not you agree with my faith or the way I have expressed it is up to you, I will not argue. As for me, I have experienced the hope, peace and healing that has come from what I believe and therefore cannot help but share it here. To not give credit for any successes I’ve had to God would be like plagiarizing an author’s work, counterfeiting someone else’s artwork, or otherwise stealing credit that rightfully belongs to someone else. It would not be ethical to take credit for my own success when my faith and the presence and work of God is so clearly felt in every aspect of my life and shape my actions, thoughts and decisions. I can only pray that one day you will find that perfect hope and helper that I have found in Christ if you haven’t already.
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