Happy Outside, Struggling Inside
"Remember that some men's sins are obvious, and are equally obvious bringing them into judgment. The sins of other men are not apparent, but are dogging them nevertheless under the surface. Similarly some virtues are plain to see, while others, though not at all conspicuous, will eventually become known." - 1 Timothy 5:24-25
Thoughts for Today
People with life-controlling problems often look great in public, but inside they struggle with issues they can't handle alone. Even in our churches, many people are struggling with hurts and problems hidden behind Sunday smiles.
These struggles can be described as addictions, dependencies, controlling behaviors, or even just the normal challenges of life that sometimes overwhelm us. We can become so preoccupied and weakened that we are unable to grow spiritually and serve God, perhaps even unable to cope with day-to-day living.
We resist admitting our struggles because we fear what others think, and so we hide our problem from others and sometimes even from ourselves.
Consider this …
If you are dealing with a life-controlling problem, please understand that you are not unique in your situation. Because we all struggle, everyone has the potential for developing a life-controlling problem. When you have this kind of a problem, it's not a time to hide--it's a time to be honest with God, with yourself and with others. It's a time to ask for help.
God loves you unconditionally. No matter what you've done. No matter what your problem. He wants to help. Talk to him today and open your heart to his love, his forgiveness and his help.
Father, I haven't wanted to admit that I have this problem--even to you. But I don't want to continue like this. Help me to be honest with you and with others--and with myself. Please forgive me. I need your help. In Jesus' name …
These thoughts were drawn from …
Living Free by Jimmy Ray Lee, D. Min. and Dan Strickland, M. Div. This updated version is presented in two parts. It offers information for anyone who either has a life-controlling problem or has a loved one with a life-controlling problem:
Part 1: Learning to Live Free
- Defining Life-Controlling Problems
- Mastered and Trapped by Issues
- Walls of Protection
- Family Influences
- Helping or Harming?
Part 2: Helping Others to Live Free through Small Groups
- The Small Group Strategy
- Effective Facilitation and Communication
- Launching a Living Free Ministry
PO Box 22127 ~ Chattanooga, Tennessee 37421 ~ 423-899-4770
© Living Free 2007. Living Free is a registered trademark. Living Free Every Day devotionals may be reproduced for personal use. When reproduced to share with others, please acknowledge the source as Living Free, Chattanooga, TN. Must have written permission to use in any format to be sold. Permission may be requested by sending e-mail to [email protected].