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Processing Things with God

by Marilyn Adamson, director of EveryStudent.com and StartingwithGod.com

What do you do when you are discouraged? When things are not going as you wish?

The other day, I took a few hours, away from work. Away from my computer. Away from other people.

Pen, paper, Bible, coffee.

And I did what I’ve done countless of times. I started writing a message to God. (I simply think best on paper.) I’ll share with you some of what I wrote.

“God, I am too externally focused. Too emotionally influenced by momentary successes and failures. Swinging between working hard, then holding back from not seeing results. [I noted a few specific frustrations.] I know that I’m giving into false assumptions. Questioning the priorities of others. Not sure how I want to proceed. It all seems like effort. Not sure of the payoff.”

I noted more specifics. Then I listed in detail, concerns I have about individuals that I care about.

When I was done telling God everything that was on my heart, I ended this way: [and this is the part I think will be useful to YOU]…

“God, tell me how to think, what to care about, how to walk by faith. What you want me to believe, how to trust you.”

What was I expecting God to do? Exactly what I just asked for.

And he did.

I started reading, and writing out verses from 1Peter. I wrote out some verses from the first 2 or 3 chapters.

Here’s the summary, which I also wrote out.

“Instead of being focused on results, gains, successes–focus on doing what is right. Be gentle, respectful, keep your conscience clear, do good, love one another, search to maintain peace, be tenderhearted, humble. Keep away from worldly desires that wage war against your souls.”

Nothing about results in that. It’s all about seeking to live in a kind way. That’s where God wanted my mind and my heart. This is what he wanted me to care about. This is how he wanted me to trust him.

Funny part of this, most of the concerns I wrote out…God was acting upon. I heard a few days later. Not all. And it mattered less to me anyway.

If life is weighing on you, I recommend this approach. Pen, paper, Bible, (coffee is optional). Ask…

“God, tell me how to think, what to care about, how to walk by faith. What you want me to believe, how to trust you.”

Then open your Bible.