People You Can’t Stand

People you can’t stand. The mutual friends that annoy you, the coworkers that are mean, the guy on the bus that gives you attitude because you sat next to him, and the people that shove you around in the crowded subways. Sometimes they are irritating blips on your life screen; other times you get caught up in a cycle of anger and resentment.

You pray and ask God to help you love them. Maybe you have to say that prayer repeatedly, in each moment that your heart rebels against the command to love them. It’s not easy to have the grace that God has. 

Just take a moment to soak that in. It gives new insight to the oft-repeated but rarely-considered line in the Lord’s prayer – “Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive others who have trespassed against us.” How easily we ask for God’s forgiveness yet we rarely think of the well of patience our Lord has for us.

There is a mind-blowing (if you really let your heart mull over it) lesson to learn from these interactions – how amazingly endless is the DEPTH AND BREADTH OF GOD’S LOVE & GRACE?!

*Image taken from:http://www.pktfuel.com/neighbourly-love/

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Can an Unanswered Prayer be a Prayer Answered?

Have you ever hit a point when you can’t remember the last time you laughed wholeheartedly? When you’ve been so burdened, stressed, and frustrated that you don’t even know what to pray for anymore?

Maybe you know in your head that you’re supposed to wait on God’s plan and that he knows best. You may be aware that there are reasons that things don’t turn out the way you want. But that doesn’t necessarily make things easier.

My advice: Keep talking to God. Keep trying to get to know him and his will. Persist because it’s what you need to do and God will enable you to keep going. Sometimes he is pulling things together and he needs you to wait. Sometimes you were better off not getting what you asked for. Sometimes you grow and learn as you wait, and your prayer ends up completely changing.

Take a look at this man’s struggle to pray when he loses the ideal job; it’s a great reminder of God’s wisdom and foresight.

You shall not covet your friend’s Facebook status

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(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.” Exodus 20:17

Did you see that last part – “…anything that belongs to your neighbor”?

For anyone who’s been part of the social networking world, we’ve all hit that point where we don’t even want to log in anymore. Whether it’s because we’re lonely and everyone else seems to have great fulfilling relationships or if it’s because others appear to be achieving all of the goals we have yet to even reach for, social networks have the ability to showcase the best of everyone’s lives. We often forget that just as we wouldn’t display our weaknesses and vulnerabilities to the entire online world, neither would the friends we’re connected to online. I’m not about to declare to the entire world that I’m doubting my decisions about school or work or my love life; are you?

For the most part, that is a highly unlikely scenario and if people do post about the negatives it’s not an in-depth exploration of the emotions they’re experiencing. So, the next time you feel disheartened because everyone else seems to have it so together, remember that everyone has their struggles. They just choose to share them privately.

God provided that last commandment not only to protect your neighbor, but to protect you! He knows it eats us up inside when we allow ourselves to start comparing our lives to those around us. He also knows how easy it is for us to lose sight of his plans for us when we’re too busy looking at what’s going on with everyone else.

Take a look at this great article about social media envy.