Many people give up far too easily when things don’t go their way or they face some kind of adversity. Instead of persevering, they get all bent out of shape. Before long, they’re down and discouraged. That’s understandable especially when we’ve struggled with a problem or a weakness for a long time; it’s not unusual to come to a place where we acquiesce. We simply accept it and say, “Well, I’ve always had this sickness. I guess I’ll never get well.” “My marriage has been dry and dull for years; why should I expect anything to change now?” “I’ve banged my head on my company’s glass ceiling one too many times. Apparently, this is as high as I can go.
But if you want to live your best life now, you have to be more determined than that. The fifth step to living at your full potential is finding strength through adversity. Our attitude should be: I may have been knocked down a few times in life, but I am not going to stay down; I am determined I’m going to live in victory. I’m determined I’m going to have a good marriage. I’m determined I’m going to work my way out of these problems.
You may have received a bad report from the doctor. Maybe you lost your largest client at work. Perhaps you just found out that your child is in trouble. You may be facing some other serious setback, and you feel as though life has caved in on top of you, knocking you off your feet and pushing you down.
But the good news is, you don’t have to stay down. Even if you can’t get up on the outside, get up on the inside! In other words, have that victor’s attitude and mentality. Stay in an attitude of faith. Don’t allow yourself to lapse into negative thinking, complaining, or blaming God. Set your face like a flint and say, “God, I may not understand this, but I know You are still in control. And You said all things would work together for my good. You said You would take this evil and turn it around and use it to my advantage. So Father, I thank You that You are going to bring me through this!” No matter what you face in life, if you know how to get tip on the inside, adversities cannot keep you down.
Sometimes that’s what we have to do in life. Our circumstances may force us to sit down for a while, but we must not stay down. Even when we are sitting down on the outside, we must see ourselves as standing on the inside!
The Scripture says, “When you’ve done everything you know how to do, just keep on standing firm.” You may be in a situation today where you have done your best. You’ve prayed. You’ve believed. You’ve placed your faith firmly on the truth of God’s Word. But it just doesn’t look like anything is happening. Now you’re tempted to say, “What’s the use? It’s never going to change.”
Don't give up! Keep standing. Keep praying; keep believing; keep hoping in faith. “Don’t cast away your confidence, one translation of the Bible says, “for payday is coming.” I like that! Payday is coming! Friend, God will reward you if you will keep standing up on the inside. You may be in the hospital, or lying flat on your back at home. But even if you cannot stand up physically nothing can keep you from standing up on the inside. That sickness may have you down physically, but you don’t have to be down spiritually or emotionally. You can keep on getting up in your heart, mind, and will.
Maybe you work around people who are always putting you down, mistreating you, and trying to make you feel badly about yourself. Let that trash talk go in one ear and out the other. They may try to knock you down on the outside, but they can’t knock you down on the inside. Don’t let those people steal your joy. Don’t let that problem or adversity causes you to become discouraged or depressed. Just keep standing up on the inside.
No matter what you are going through or how difficult it may seem, you can stay standing up on the inside. It will take courage; it will definitely take determination, but you can do it if you decide to do so. You must act on your will, not simply your emotions.
You may be sitting around waiting for God to change your circumstances. Then you’re going to be happy, then you’re going to have a good attitude, then you’re going to give God praise. But God is waiting on you to get up on the inside. When you do your part, He’ll begin to change things and work supernaturally in your life.
Are you going through a dark time in your life? Perhaps somebody deceived you, took advantage of you, or mistreated you, and now you are tempted to sit around mourning over what you have lost, thinking about how unfair it was, and how your life will never be the same. You need to change your attitude. You have to get up on the inside. Develop that victor’s mentality and watch what God will do.
Friend, your circumstances are subject to change suddenly, too, especially when you start standing up on the inside. When you face adversity, don’t be a crybaby. Don’t be a complainer. Don’t wallow in self-pity, Instead, have the attitude of a victor.
You may be weary and tired, worn down, and ready to give up. You may be saying, “I’m never going to break this addiction. I’ve had it for so long. I wouldn’t even know how to function without it.” Or, “My income is so low, and my debts are so high; I don’t see how my financial situation will ever get better.” Or, “I’ve been praying for years, but it doesn’t look as though my children want to serve God.” “I’ve had about as much as I can take.”
Don't allow yourself to wave the white flag of surrender. You must get out of that defeated mentality and start thinking and believing positively. Your attitude should be: I’m coming out of this thing! I may have been sick for a long time, but I know this sickness didn’t come to stay. It came to pass. I may have struggled with this addiction for years, but I know my day of deliverance is coming. My children may not be doing right, but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.
God wants you to be a winner, not a whiner. There is no reason for you to be perpetually living “under the circumstances,” always down, always discouraged. No matter how many times you get knocked down, keep getting back up. God sees your resolve. He sees your determination. And when you do every thing you can do, that’s when God will step in and do what you can’t do.