Really, there are. It's easy these days to get caught up in all the bad stuff that we see in the news day after day, and it would be very easy to become jaded and dwell upon that ugliness. But we don't have to.
Just as we don't need to be lulled into becoming part of the world around us, which is, quite simply, a fallen one.
However, I am reminded time after time of the great and many gifts that God has placed within us and before us if we only take the time to re-calibrate our focus.
I recently saw this video by Nick Vujicic, who was born without functional arms and legs.
Vujicic is shown as he goes about town, seeing people who are worse off than he is...or are they? An arguing couple, a homeless man longing for his family, a lonesome teenager and a recently-widowed wife of a soldier all contemplate their hopeless state in life.
Through their encounter with Nick they come together for a common cause and realize that they may not be as hopeless as they feel they are. It's an awesome example of the importance of hope in our lives, as well as the fact that the world's, and sometimes even our own, perception of our value is mostly irrelevant.
The only real value we have is in the eyes of God who made us, and in how open we are to His plan for us, which if followed, will result in great blessings for us and for others we interact with.
Not only did this video remind me of that fact, it also spoke to me about the value of focusing on things that really matter in our lives. Like the people in the video, we can all strive to find our place in this world where we think we want to be - but those endeavors usually end up in disappointment.
Most of us can identify with at least one of these people, specifically the challenge of relationships and finding where we belong. The world throws constant curve balls into our lives, but these are just fleeting situations in a much larger picture and if we allow ourselves to be subdued by these situations, we certainly will be. But, just like the individuals in the video, we can overcome through the grace of our Creator.
God uses these situations to help us to grow as people, and to prepare us to be equipped and to do His bidding in our lives.
If we just let Him.
But instead, we often look at these situations as life-ending, when they can be life-changing in a glorious way.
I have not experienced life-threatening illness, nor tragedy, nor anything anywhere close to what Nick has gone through. But I can see the message of what his life brings to me, that God is in the life-building business and He makes the most beautiful things out of what we perceive as worthless raw materials such as ourselves.
We screw up, we hurt, we fail... but God takes those things and uses them in our lives to create a wonderful picture of His love for us, and allows us to minister to others along the way.
So, I encourage you to forsake the things of this world that suck you in, steal your time and darken your outlook, and instead use that time to fill your life with goodness and hope. Take every opportunity to watch things similar to this video to help realign your perspective and actively seek God's will in your life.
Don't lose your hope... what awesome plan does God have for your life?
Published: October 10, 2011