Once you can express the events in your life as praise and not a means of validating yourself to others, then you will know that you have truly grown, and broken free from the powers of bondage.
Bondage says, tell everyone what you're doing." It influences motive. If your motives are pure then it won't matter.
Likewise, in your praising, be careful who you divulge information to.
Not everyone understands your motives. For instance, I got my Masters several years ago, and not everyone knew. One friend in particular, had her own ideas as to what I should have been doing with it. She said that I “had a Masters degree just sitting there collecting dust.” It was not God’s time for me to use it, and I knew that. However, He told me to get ready. So I got the MS and had it there hanging in the wings. Now an outside party was trying to tell me what to do. Just because you have something doesn't mean you should be all willy nilly with it. Prepare and when the time is right, you would have already been prepared to receive that blessing.
There are people that pray for a husband of wife. Why are you doing this when you aren’t ready? Ready to have sex doesn’t not equal ready to get married. Being morally responsible and emotionally stable are hallmarks of marriage preparedness. It is also in knowing that you have a lot to give, not wanting to receive something all the while. Being married is not an indicator of success or accomplishment. Neither is having several degrees. Anyone can go to college, and anyone can say “I do.” However, where and how does Christ fit in to all of this?
I am beyond tired of people who truly want to get married pout about how much they want to get married and then when they don’t get their way, recant and say, they don’t want to get tied down. Give me a break. Stop being impatient and wait. Sometimes God brings annoying people in our lives so we can see how we are. And it takes patience and discernment to be able to see it. Then it takes the power of the Holy Ghost to change it. Trust me, I have spoken to God about people who are ANNOYING. Then I heard him speaking to me saying “Well what annoys you about them?” I’d think of several things.
“Well, you are the same way” He’d say. People are needed to be in our lives to hold up a form of mirror for us. Maybe if someone approached me and said “Hey you know you are this that and the other” I’d tell them to jump off a cliff. But having God place people in my life where I can actually see for myself what the deal is, has helped me twofold. One, I can see who I am and what needs to be changed. I also strengthen my prayer life by praying for others. There are people who have wronged me to whom communication is a non issue. However, it hasn’t stopped me from praying FOR them, not AGAINST them. I suppose there are people who don’t’ understand friendship and love. So if they leave, then let them go.
I know of someone else who was being dissuaded in moving because he needed seed money. He tried to explain to this lady that he did not need seed money. All he needed was God. Well, this person he was speaking to didn’t understand that it is God that gives man the strength to get wealth. Likewise, He withholds it from us until we are mature enough to receive it. Don’t let anyone tell you differently from what God wants you to do. Sometimes they are just trying to be helpful, but other times, it is just pure resentment the fuels their advice. They resent where you are and what you have and what you could become.
At present, I am working on completing a degree I started some years back. I am not saying this to brag, but I say it because I know it is God who is giving me the strength to do it.
People ask me, how do I do it all? My simple answer is that I pray and ask God for direction, and He gives it to me. Then I ask for strength to follow it.
I live in a place where there are few distractions. I used to live where I made progress, but the atmosphere was toxic and detrimental to my soul. If there is something you don’t like, then focus only on what you can control. I knew I could control where I live, but I couldn’t change what was happening around me no matter how hard I tried. So I left that environment.
Mental/emotional stress is real , the perception is real also. There is also emotional stress that is detrimental to your body. I know of a teacher who had to stop working because of the stress level on her. She said it was affecting her heart. Other than the physical, what others may believe is stressful, doesn’t need to be a big deal for you. It is just a matter of how you perceive it. So someone may look at my life and wonder how, while I look at someone else’s life and wonder “how on earth?”
In sum, remember this week, to take each day, as it is given to you; Moment by moment. Sleep early, rise early. I personally get so much more done this way and so can you!
Don’t forget the little things, because here in lie the pieces of happiness…knowing that there is a God that s in tune with every aspect of your circumstance. Praise God and speak life! He is going through it with you! You can find a friend who is closer than a brother, but you really couldn’t have a better friend like Jesus.