by Rita Langeland
“I can’t wait for God to do something in my life another minute. I am just going to take matters into my own hands and make something happen! It is better than waiting forever!” So said a young lady who had been praying for a husband for several years, just before she went out, found herself a man to marry, and lived unhappily ever after.
A wise man named Warren Wiersbe once said, “The ability to calm your soul and wait before God is one of the most difficult things in the Christian life. Our old nature is restless...the world around us is frantically in a hurry. But a restless heart usually leads to a reckless life.”
We have all observed the restless impatience of a young child who has been promised a sweet treat by his parent if he can only wait patiently for the appointed time. One aspect of increased maturity is the development of patience, yet we often see tremendous struggles with impatience among adult Christian believers. Impatience is the mortal enemy of the spiritual discipline of waiting on God. Impatience can be defined as the restless desire for immediate change compounded by an intolerance for anything that hinders or delays one from moving forward.
Impatience with people is often a sign of immaturity or self-centeredness, but impatience with God is a sign of unbelief. It means that you are unwilling to trust God for His timing, His wisdom and His intentions of good for your life. If you think that sounds like a harsh assessment, consider this example. If you have been waiting a long time for God to send you a spouse and find yourself frustrated, angry and questioning God’s love for you, then unbelief has crept in to your heart and disturbed your peace and shaken your faith in God’s heart toward you. God’s heart toward you is always to do you good and not evil. So when He requires a waiting season in your life, His plan is for a blessing to be yours in the end. But you will have to fight off the temptation to...
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Self Will or God's Will
by Rita Langeland
In modern society we see an abundance of “self-will” being exercised. We find it very distasteful when we see it in a child, but seem oblivious to its ugliness when it is expressed in our own adult lives. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines “self-willed” as “governed by one’s own will” and “determined to do what you want even though other people may not want you to do it.” When it comes to our relationship with God, “self-will” places us squarely at odds with God’s will.
Fear Is Not Your Friend
by Rita Langeland
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and a sound mind - 2 Timothy 1:7
Some years ago, a local newspaper reported a tragic occurrence. A freight train was passing through a nearby city in the middle of the night. The train engineers saw what they believed to be an oncoming train approaching on their track. One of them became so gripped with fear that he jumped from the train to his death. The other engineer soon found out that the oncoming train was traveling on a parallel train track and the two trains passed safely by one another. Fear led to a 35 year old man’s premature death.
The word FEAR has been aptly described with this acronym:
F – false E - expectations A - appearing R - real. In the case of the train engineer, a false expectation (that the oncoming train would cause a collision) which appeared very real, pushed him to make an unwise and deadly decision.
This true story provides us with a picture of how the spirit of fear operates. However, it is first necessary to understand that the Bible teaches that fear is a “spirit” not an emotion as so many people are taught from childhood. Fear certainly applies pressure to your emotions but “it” is not an emotion but actually an evil spirit. Second Timothy 1:7 identifies fear as a “spirit” when it says: God has not given us a spirit of fear… The commonly held misperception that fear is a natural emotion actually helps the spirit of fear do his “dirty work” without any resistance.
Let us take a look at the strategies of the spirit of fear: