Let God Blow a Second Wind into Your Life
- Whitney Hopler Live It Editor
- 2004 4 Apr
Do you feel tired, disappointed, or stuck in life? Do your days seem to drag on without much energy or excitement?
If so, you're not alone. Everyone who tries to run the race of faith goes through times when they feel like they just can't continue. But God promises a second wind to those who trust Him. No matter what your current circumstances, it's never too late to pursue that second wind - a force that will propel you forward into God's best for your life. Here are some ways you can discover a second wind:
Realize that it's never over until it's over. Understand that, no matter how old or set in your ways you are, God never intends for your life to be locked in. He always has more for you to experience and learn, as long as you're alive. Invite and expect Him to surprise you with His creative ideas for new directions you can take in life. Don't rule out anything - a career change, a new baby, a move, etc.
Be willing to take risks. Offer every part of your life to God without holding anything back. Understand that you can trust Him completely whenever He asks you to take a risk. Know that taking risks for God is actually safer than not doing so, because the best place for you to be is in the center of God's will.
Turn to God for healing. Take heart that God is willing and able to heal you from whatever wounds you've suffered in your past. Start walking with God through the healing process, and trust that you can hope for real and lasting change.
Forgive those who have hurt or offended you. Don't let unforgiveness block the second wind God wants to send you. Decide to forgive others and rely on God's help to do so.
Let God sit in the driver's seat. Stop trying to wrest control of your life away from God. Sit in the passenger seat of your life and let God drive. Know that, by doing so, you will be able to accomplish far more than you ever could on your own. Remember that God has only the best plans in mind for you.
Confess and repent. Come clean with God by confessing your sins and repenting of them. Let Him use this process to make you humbler and wiser.
Keep your promises. If you've told God you would do something but have struggled to follow up, remember your vow and decide to obey. Know that if you cooperate with God, you will be eligible to receive the good gifts He wants to give you. Do the right thing and watch what God will do in response.
Trust God to change evil into good. Don't fret about other people's unfair actions toward you. Know that, if you commit these situations to God, He will take what they meant for evil and use it to accomplish good purposes in your life.
Don't play the blame game. Don't waste time and energy blaming other people or your circumstances for your problems. Be willing to take responsibility for your own responses to life. Decide that you really want your life to change, and tell God so. Believe that God wants to change your life, too, and will help you when you turn to Him.
Have the courage to be proactive. Keep stepping out in faith to follow God wherever He leads, even when the odds seem to be overwhelmingly against you. Don't wait for your circumstances to change; act anyway, and God will walk beside you.
Engage in spiritual warfare. Recognize the fact that you have an enemy - Satan - who is trying to block your progress. Don't be surprised when you encounter difficulties in our fallen world. View such experiences as what they are - times of testing - and pray regularly for the strength to remain faithful. Know that God will use the pain of your trials to shape you into a stronger person. Instead of asking, "Why is this happening to me?" ask, "How can I learn from this?".
Accept God's grace. Don't worry about trying to earn anything from God; that's not possible, anyway. Simply expect and accept the free gift of His grace toward you.
Give God your thanks and praise. Take the time to express your gratitude to God for all He's doing in your life, and praise Him for who He is.
Be patient. Realize that God doesn't operate by clocks or calendars; He operates beyond time, with a much grander perspective in mind. Understand that He sees your struggles and cares very much. Trust that He will answer your prayers - but in His time, not yours. While you're waiting, don't worry or compare yourself to others. Focus on Jesus instead of your circumstances, and pray for peace.
Don't limit God. Understand that nothing is impossible with Him. Know that God often sees more of your potential than you do, and is able to make even your wildest dreams come true. Sometimes He will even choose to do much more than you can imagine.
Know that God will never give up on you. Take heart in the fact that God never will never consider you a lost cause. As long as you're open to a relationship with Him, He will carry on His good work in your life. Remind yourself often of His promise to send you a second wind!
Adapted from The Promise of the Second Wind, copyright 2003 by Bill Butterworth and Dean Merrill. Published by WaterBrook Press (a division of Random House, Inc.), Colorado Springs, CO, www.waterbrookpress.com.
Bill Butterworth is a full-time speaker who has addressed groups at Disney, Daimler Chrysler, American Express, and megachurches such as Willow Creek Community Church and Saddleback Community Church. Bill is a graduate of Florida Bible College, Dallas Theological Seminary, and Florida Atlantic University. He is the former director of counseling for Chuck Swindoll's Insight for Living ministry and is the author of several books, including When Life Doesn't Turn Out Like You Planned. Bill lives with his wife, Kathi, in Newport Beach, California.
Dean Merrill is the author or co-author of more than 20 books, including the award-winning, best-selling trilogy with Jim Cymbala, Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire and its sequels, Fresh Faith and Fresh Power. He is the vice president of international publishing for the International Bible Society and a board member of the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association. A graduate of Chicago Bible College and Syracuse University, Dean lives with his wife, Grace, in Colorado Springs, Colorado.