Monday, January 30, 2012

Outlook determines outcome

In Warren Wiersbe’s book "Be Mature," (a study of the book of James) it says:
"Outlook determines outcome, and attitude determines action."
God tells us to expect trials. It is not “if" you fall into various testings but “when" you fall into various testings. Jesus even warned His disciples, "In the world, you will have tribulation." (John 16:33) So why do we find ourselves so surprised when these trials and troubles come?

Most of the time we are caught off guard. Some people think that "it" will never happen to me. What is "it"? Cancer? Death? Divorce? No matter what name you label "it", some kind of trial or tribulation is bound to happen sooner or later.

Instead of being caught off guard, why not be prepared and start taking action NOW!

If the IRS notified you today that in 6 months there would be a tax lien placed on your home and you would have to take care of this immediately or risk losing your home, most likely you would begin to save some money now or put a plan into action of how you could pay this tax lien to save your house. If we can plan and take action to save our physical home, why do we not take the same preparations to save our spiritual homes?

My 1-2-3 preparation plan for such a time looks like this:     

1. PRAY. Begin praying now for those things that are ahead that you do not see. Pray for strength. For wisdom. For discernment. Don't wait until the trial hits to pray, pray now that WHEN it hits, that you will be prayed up and have trust and confidence in God to see you thru!

2. GIVE. It is easy to give money when you have plenty, but what about when you have little? Begin now, no matter what season you are in, to give. Not just monetarily, but of your talents and your time. If you are cheap in giving to God now, you will probably not be much better when trials and tribulations hit. Now is the sowing time. We will reap what we sow.

3. ATTITUDE. Your attitude is everything. If you are "woe is me", your attitude just may determine the outcome of your situation. Give praise in ALL things. Yes that means the good, the bad and the ugly. Instead of focusing on the "have nots", focus on God and trust in Him enough that He will provide a way of escape. Your outlook will certainly determine the outcome.

It is not everyday that we can look at troubled times as something beautiful, but even Warren Wiersbe points this very thing out in his study. The "stuff" that we go thru can be a time of growing and changing. A time of beauty. A time of His transforming us.

Beauty or disaster?
The outcome really just depends upon our outlook! Choose today to be prepared.