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Volume 12, Issue 21: Build Resilience

On any journey, and every goal is a journey, there are usually setbacks. We make mistakes, something unexpected happens, or circumstances change. Without resilience, a setback results in the end of the journey.

Most of us have mastered the art of persistence. We are determined to stay committed to the pursuit of our goals. But a time comes when determination alone is not enough. There comes a time when we need to add resilience to our tool box.

We have the be able to withstand or recover from setbacks and difficult situations. That is what resilience is. It's the ability to become strong, healthy and successful again after something bad happens.

Resilience is actually more critical than persistence. As David Beavers has written, persistence is the ability to stay in the game, to not quit, to hang in there. It's the attitude needed for the long haul. Resilience on the other hand is about our capacity to bounce back from difficulties, disappointments, heartbreak and hard times.

Some of us have persistence but lack resilience. Yet resilience is critical in succeeding in life and business. As written by David, persistence keeps us in the race, but resilience returns us to the right path when we get knocked off course, even knocked to the ground.

The ability to bend and not break comes with developing resilience. Since the playing field is never guaranteed to remain predictable, we must develop resilience to guarantee us a chance of making it to the finish line should we have to maneuver a few curve balls along the way.

Moving on and learning from our mistakes takes resilience. By facing facts squarely, allowing time for recovery and bouncing back with an attitude for growth, it's possible to be resilient in the face of any setback.

Although persistence will keep you showing up, it's resilience that will see you resume showing up after dusting yourself from the effects of difficulties and setbacks. Resilience is what makes you unstoppable and unperturbed in the face of setbacks and difficulties.

 

For His Glory,

Lillian Chebosi

 

 

Volume 12, Issue 20: In Their Own Time

A friend of mine said something that got me thinking. Her twin boys have just finished their first year of University and she can tell that they are still struggling with the transition back to the States. They spent most of their early years in Ethiopia and in Kenya because of her work, and just recently relocated back to the States.

She said, "they will get there in their own time". That made me think of some of the things I contend over with my teenage children. There are ways I want them to think about things and do things that they haven't attained yet. I now appreciate that I need to accept that they are just not there yet.

I want my children to be enthusiastic in their walk with God. At church when people are dancing, they just stand there, singing along quietly. Almost every Sunday morning my son comes along when I go an hour early to church for me to take part in the prayer ministry, I appreciate that he doesn't complain having to go to church an hour before the service begins.

My son sits there as the adults pace around praying for various needs. And I pray for him, that through those moments of him siting there under the canopy of prayer, that God would give him an encounter with himself and cause him to show excitement about his walk with God. But now I accept that my children will get there in their own time, and in God's timing for them.

As I wish for my daughter to be more helpful around the house, to offer to do more than is required of her, I accept that she will get there in her own time. That I can't make her be who she is not yet at this point of her youth. But trust that as I guide and pray for her, she will get there.

I especially pray that our young people would want a more balance use of their down time. That they would not only be interested in entertaining themselves, being in front of a screen all day long. That they would limit their time on screens and balance their time between reading, playing, woking on something, learning a new skill, and so forth. But I have to accept that they will get there in their own time.

 

For His Glory,

Lillian Chebosi

 

 
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Volume 12, Issue 19: Necessary Arrangements Part III

In the last post we saw how God made necessary arrangements to answer Hannah's request. Hannah honored the vow she made to God in that desperate prayer and dedicated her son to God, gave him to his service after weaning him.

Although it is not recorded if Hannah desired to get other children, God blessed her with three more sons and two daughters. Certainly God honours those who honour him, and he removes their reproach. A woman who had been barren for years suddenly becomes the happy mother of six children! Only God can turn things around in such magnitude.

God makes necessary arrangements to roll away our reproach. When our lack of ability makes us taunted, God rolls away our reproach by promoting us in spite of our lack of qualification. God qualifies the unqualified.

God makes necessary arrangements to provide for his people. When the economy takes a turn for the worst and rising prices become unbearable, God makes a way for his people to make it through the tough times. He sees to it that they are provided for. God sees to it that the school fees for the bright child of a struggling single mother are paid.

God makes necessary arrangements to heal our ailments and broken hearts. When life hands us a bitter pill of a betrayal or abuse or loss and we cry out to God, he comes alongside us and stays close until our hearts are healed and our wounds are mended. He exchanges our mourning with dancing, and our sorrow with joy.

God makes necessary arrangements to turn our situations around. He makes necessary arrangements to make sure that we get treated well, get the help we need in our work and day to day lives. He makes necessary arrangements for us to be favoured at work and in the market place. He makes necessary arrangements to clear the traffic for us when we need him to, and to make a fuel deficient car reach the petrol station before completely running out of fuel and stalling on a busy road. That's our God, our very present help in times of need.

 

For His Glory,

Lillian Chebosi

 

 
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Volume 12, Issue 18: Necessary Arrangements Part II

Something changes on the inside of us when we pour out our hearts to God. Time with God lifts our countenance and gives us hope for the outcome we seek. That change on the inside doesn't fail to bear fruit in the fullness of God's timing. Immediately the change happens on the inside, God begins to make the necessary arrangements to manifest the change on the outside.

At the beginning of the the first chapter of the book of 1st Samuel, we meet Hannah, the childless first wife of her husband Elkanah. Her family are at the sanctuary of God in Shiloh where they had gone from their hometown for their annual trip to worship and offer a sacrifice to God. We meet Hannah at mealtime. Her family had sat down to eat together, but Hannah was sad and dejected, reduced to tears and had no appetite for food. Her loving husband tried to encourage her. She ate, but her heaviness of heart persisted.

The reason for Hannah's sadness was her lack of children. Whenever they made their annual family trip to the sanctuary, her co-wife taunted her cruelly, rubbing it in and never letting her forget that she was childless. This went on year after year. Every time she went to the sanctuary of God she could expect to be taunted. We meet Hannah when she is reduced to tears from the taunting.

The story starts with Hannah being sad and dejected, crying. But the story soon changes when she pulls herself together to go pray. Crushed in soul, Hannah prayed to God and cried inconsolably, telling God exactly how she felt and what she wanted.

Hannah admitted to the priest who thought she was drunk that she was desperately unhappy and in pain, pouring out her heart to God. She also asked the man of God to think well of her, and to pray for her. The Bible then records in the eighteenth verse of the chapter that Hannah then went her way and ate heartily, her face radiant.

How did Hannah move from being sad and dejected to radiant in a matter of moments? Nothing had changed from the time she went out to pray to the time she returned to her family. How is it that she left sad and dejected, didn't feel like eating, was broken-hearted as she prayed, but when she was done praying, she was in high spirits? That is the mystery of spending time with God.

No promise of a child was given to Hannah when she prayed, but her countenance changed. Why did she become happy and rested all of a sudden? That is something that only heartfelt prayer can do for you. Your situation may not change, but time with God transforms desperation into hope. Time with God leaves you feeling settled regardless of whether or not you ever get what you seek.

Now here comes the best part. I read the Message translation of the Bible because it speaks my language. The Bible says that after Elkanah's family returned home, Elkanah slept with his wife Hannah, and God began making the necessary arrangements in response to what she had asked. How about that? And before the year was out, Hannah had conceived and given birth to a son!

Doesn't that just wow your heart? When we cry out to him in submission, our Heavenly Father goes to work making necessary arrangements in response to our plea. Let's explore this further in the next post where we will consider some of the examples we see God making necessary arrangements in our lives today.

 

For His Glory,

Lillian Chebosi

 

 

Volume 12, Issue 17: Necessary Arrangements Part I

When we are about to embark on a trip, we typically begin to make travel arrangements. In the case of an international trip, we start looking into getting a visa and purchasing the ticket. We are also likely to make prior arrangements for our accommodation when we get there, and for our transportation from the airport to our final destination. We also pack the items we will need to use on the journey and at our destination, being careful not to forget anything important.

Throughout life we make arrangements. We make arrangements for getting married, for our studies and careers. We make arrangements for our children's education and general progression. We make arrangements for the functions we host and attend. In order to succeed, we make necessary arrangements all over the place.

As good as we are at making arrangements, God beats us hands down in his making arrangements on a our behalf. The most outstanding example is how God made necessary arrangements for our redemption well ahead of time. From Adams' fall in the garden, God knew mankind would need redeeming, a final atonement for sin for which the blood of bulls couldn't accomplish.

God made the necessary arrangements for His one and only Son to die in our place to offer the sacrifice needed to atone for our sins. He made arrangements for our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to be born into the world, to die for our sins and to rise from the dead. He made these arrangements in order to reunite us to himself by breaking the snare of sin and death over us.

Throughout life, before Christ and after Christ, God makes necessary arrangements for mankind. We don't have space enough in this article to talk of the different arrangements he made in the life of Elizabeth the mother of John the Baptist, Jesus' earthly parents - Joseph and Mary, Samuel, David, Samson, Gideon, Esther, Paul, John, Peter, and so many others in the Bible.

It is safe to say that God is in the business of making necessary arrangements to meet the needs of his people. Let's explore this further in the next article.

 

For His Glory,

Lillian Chebosi