This week, I was sitting around thinking about many different things. I was thinking about my job, personal relationships there, challenges we all face and something rather simple came up and hit me in the face. I was watching a television show and someone on the show was a recovering alcoholic. And in the process of the show, it was brought out that there is no such thing as a recovering alcoholic. You are always an alcoholic. It is always going to be an obstacle in your life. It will never go away. You might go through the remainder of your life sober, but that is it.
The more I thought about this fact, the more I realized that in life, the obstacles we face don’t change. If we are diagnosed with cancer, the cancer does not magically change one day into perfect cells. If we struggle with pornography, we will always battle that.
The obstacles do not change, but we can!
It seems to me that with this realization, I might have to change the way that I pray. So often when we pray, we want God to remove the obstacle. We beg and plead with Him to remove the obstacle from our lives. We pray that the cancer is removed. We pray that we no longer struggle with our addictions. We will pray with fervor that God remove the obstacle. AND we expect Him to do just that. But I do not think that is what He wants. I do not think that helps Him manifest Himself to us, in us, and through us.
We must remember that we are NEW creations through HIM. What does this mean, it means that the obstacles will not change, but WE do. We have been made into a creation that has the ability to respond to the obstacle with His grace and His very character. It means that He is not going to remove the obstacle, but it means that He has made us able to overcome it in a manner that will bring glory to God the Father and the Son. The more we learn how to trust Him, the more we gain wisdom through opening the eyes and ears of our hearts, the more we change.
The more we accept that we are new, the more the obstacles cease to be obstacles. The more we acknowledge the one who makes all things new, the more we will see the obstacle as a chance to glorify Him. Each day we remain sober, each day we live with the cancer and still walk in the light, we can give glory to the maker and perfecter of our faith. As our mindset changes so does the obstacle. It is no longer an obstacle but an opportunity.
I know that sounds quite cliched, but I have never seen an obstacle disappear. I have never seen the obstacles change, but I have. Who I am inside has changed. The more I acknowledge that I am made in His image, the more I am able to tackle and conquer the challenges of life. The more I am able to just be in His presence, the more I am able to love the co-worker that drives me nuts, the more I am able to see past my own faults and my own challenges. The more that I listen to His voice about who I am, the easier it is not to get depressed about my imperfections or the fact that not everyone loves me as much as I wish they did.
The obstacles we face don’t change…only our abilities to overcome them.