Many folks are looking for breakthrough answers to make their lives a success, but most solutions can be found at the foundational level.
There are plenty enough struggles facing us in life already without adding to the difficulty by bypassing the fundamentals. When I minister to folks who are struggling on a continual basis and their life seems to be very complex, the answers to their problems are often found in the simple fixes. People normally stumble over the things that are so simple that they look right past them. Remember, it is the small foxes that spoil the vine, so the small adjustments could be your answer for breakthrough.
Most all of the basic steps in life are so simple they are taught in Kindergarten. Let’s review them together while realizing scripture has something to say about these as well.
- Attendance/Tardy – We must first show up for the challenge and remember success is found in consistency. In order for new habits to be formed, effort must be applied every day. John 8:31-32 “If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And, ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (Emphasis added by writer.) Dependability is also a key. Proverbs 20:6 “Most men will proclaim each his own goodness, But who can find a faithful man?” Concerning a vocation or serving in the Kingdom of God; any level of talent will be trumped by not being present when you are needed.
- Listen/pay attention – Learning to listen intently to others is vital to developing relationships; listening to others and listening to God. Proverbs 4:20-22 “My son, attend to my words; incline thine ear unto my sayings. Let them not depart from thine eyes; keep them in the midst of thine heart. For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh.” Also, listening for instructions are always important, whether you are on the job, in the classroom, or wherever you are. How would you know what to do in life without learning to listen and adhere to the instructions?
- Stay in line and wait your turn – There are no shortcuts to success. Some things just take time. James 1:4 “But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.” Galatians 6:9 “And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” Patience can also be defined as consistency; an increase in consistency will always increase results.
- Keep your hands to yourself – Mind your own business. There is nothing more important than relationships with other people, so the enemy does his best to complicate them. God has designed us all to be a positive influence in the lives of others, but, we cannot afford to allow other people to get us off course. Often times the friends who really need our help, doesn’t get it. And those who aren’t asking for our input are subjected to our criticism. Galatians 6:5-4 “But let each one examine his own work, and then he will have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. For each one shall bear his own load.”
- Cooperation- If you have a problem in working with others you will struggle with life. God will supernaturally connect you to others whose strengths are in your area of weakness. All of the gifts that God has given you will ultimately benefit others in some degree if utilized properly. God used the human body as an illustration to describe the function of the body of Christ. How effective would the hand be if it was disconnected from the rest of the body? Likewise, the body suffers tremendously without the benefit of the hand. There is a tremendous amount of scripture devoted to our connectivity to one another. We simply work better once we have been assembled properly.
Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 — “Two are better than one, Because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls, For he has no one to help him up.”
God will grant you wisdom for life when you ask Him and He will also direct you through His word. Just remember that there is nothing new under the sun, so the answer may be simpler than you think. It could be as simple as implementing something you learned in Kindergarten.
Rev. Josh Vanhook is pastor of Word of Life Church at Mt. Gay and a member of the Logan Ministerial Association.