Walking with Christ has its ups and downs. The downs are the times our flesh convinces us that it’s much stronger than the spirit God gave us. But no, it is not. The downs are when our perception and reality are so stuck in this present world, so we never feel or seem satisfied. The ups are experiencing the overwhelming feeling and reality of True Freedom in Christ Jesus.
The ups are when we resist our own desires, trade them in for the things of the spirit, and watch the ways of Jesus become ours.
My friend, that walk is difficult, and God did not design us to walk it alone.
I want to give people an easy guide to abide by to help them know when they are doing everything physically possible and that now its just time to wait on God’s supernatural healing and trust that He is bringing it, right then and there. Let’s dive into them. These are the five things we need to thrive mentally, spiritually, and emotionally in Christ:
This is so important! Especially for all my introverts and my extroverts that are being stubborn. It’s okay, there’s grace, but don’t keep tugging on this string when you know the lord has called you to assemble. Hebrews 10:24-25 “And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.” There is healing when we come together as one. God moves powerfully and strongly in your quiet time alone with Him but God also works in community; "Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them,” (Matthew 18:19-21).
I truly believe that a person will not walk in their true full calling without experiencing community. Yes, there can be tension and some push back from people but know God has called you for community. Create healthy boundaries with the Lord and listen to what He is saying.
You will find the people He specifically appointed to be in your life!
Books, Books, Books, Books, Books, Books!
I used to speak to myself over and over again about how much I hated books and how hard it was for me to read. That negative self-talk left me in a place of no growth and unable to receive the true potential God had for me. The right books hold wisdom and pockets of knowledge we have never ventured into. God has planted precious messages inside of authors and we get to be gifted by them when we open a book. So, here are three main books to always have:
Books that help you grow professionally
Books that help you with your mindset. Examples: books on creating habits, cleaning, organizing, etc.
Books that help challenging mental issues you are overcoming such depression and anxiety.
Books that help you grow in knowledge in an area of interest you have. Some examples are: becoming a doula, fitness, nutrition, finances etc.
I used to be the person that always said I never had enough time to read, but it wasn’t that I didn’t have time, it was just I didn’t have enough of a reason to value myself and do it. Here’s some tips I took to make sure I fit in my reading:
Set a timer for 10, 15, 20 minutes or more and sit down and read.
Buy a book on audible and listen to the book.
Get a book off kindle and read it from a tablet, phone or computer if you think reading from a screen is easier.
3. THERAPY & LIFE COACH
I ran from therapy for so long because growing up, I saw it as something that people needed when they went off the deep end. NOT AT ALL. I love therapy! It’s a time to just let everything out with a trusted and professional source that will lead you with wisdom and call out things that we don’t normally see all the time. They help give you a fresh new perspective besides yours and your family and friends'. Therapy has helped me so much and made me into the person I am today. There were times where I only needed therapy once a month and times I needed it once to twice a week. You can schedule as frequently you need it and use the time to let it all out! Make sure to pray to God about the right counselor or therapist that fits you and remember, your counselor or therapist is not your god. God is your God.
A life coach is a tad different. They help you practically organize your day-to-day work, provide you with encouragement and perspective to accomplish your tasks at hand. I don’t know how many years I have gone through and at the end of the year I looked back and realized I only accomplished only 1/3 of my goals. Your life coaches will help you put doable systems in place to accomplish your business goals or just everyday life tasks.
WOOOO! This one is touchy because a lot of people don’t think they need a church but, you do. God wants us to be submitted to a spiritual authority. Yes, submitted to God ultimately of course but also apart of a community of healthy spiritual leaders.
Matthew 18:20 says, “For where two or three gather in my name, there I am with them” and Acts 2:42 “They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.”
Ephesians 4: 14-16 is a great one too, but read it on your own time. It discusses how doctrine can get so entangled and the importance of having a spiritual body will help you to not get tossed to and fro by every sound doctrine. When I first gave my life to Christ, I used to let people tell me anything and everything. I had no community to help strengthen me until I was able to take a deep dive in my word and get plant on my Rock, Jesus.
Hebrews 13:17 states, “Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you", this is hard to swallow because it’s hard for people to submit because that word gets twisted and tainted by society. There is a power to be submitted. A power that is beyond our understanding but know it is powerful and beautiful.
5. QUIET TIME
This time looks different for a lot of people.
I call it quiet time because it is a time where I present myself before the Lord and get quiet to hear what He has to say to me. Sometimes, I enter this time with praise and worship unto the Lord or in prayer. Just note that this time is all dedicated to the Lord. A time to spend with God and rest, a time to give thanksgiving to Him, a time to press in and make petitions and supplications and war in the spirit.
Matthew 6:33 sums up this time beautifully, “But seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you”. God simply asks us to seek Him always. Seek Him when we are happy, seek Him when we are sad, Seek Him when everything is going right and seek Him when everything is going wrong. When we can do this, we are able to get clarity on the life He has given us and peace in the most complicated situations.
Implementing this everyday will be a game changer for your mental, emotional, and spiritual growth. Watch yourself grow exponentially in a time frame that only God has ordained because it will just not make sense to you!
Also, before I wrap this up, I wanted to throw in that you don’t have to spend hours in quiet time. Fit it in how you see fit for your life. Set a timer and set 5 min or 10 min or 20 minutes at a time. I found that setting a timer took the anxiety down a notch and allowed me to completely focus and dedicate that whole time to the Lord. You will begin to see how God will move outside of your time and draw you into His limitless eternity.
Hebrews 10:24-25, Matthew 18:19-21, Matthew 18:20, Acts 2:42, Ephesians 4: 14-16, Hebrews 13:17, Matthew 6:33 The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
TFSx Ashley Anderson
CEO, I Promise Let's Live