Be Mindful
Melanie Chitwood

"Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth." Colossians 3:2 (NAS)

About a year ago, my husband and I, along with another couple, began moving forward with a dream of opening an indoor basketball/volleyball gym. We've prayed and taken steps on this path, and now our business has opened. In the midst of starting this new business, the economy began a downward slide that we never could have anticipated. So what was already a risky endeavor has become even riskier.

I watch the news, and it's easy to feel fearful and to think, Are we crazy to continue to pursue this new business?! People ask me if we're afraid, and just their questioning leads me down a road of thinking we should be more afraid than we are. Others express their skepticism, and then it's easy to wonder, Should we just bail out and cut our losses now?

When I take my eyes off my circumstances or stop focusing on what others say, my perspective changes. Then I can say to myself and others, We're walking in faith as we set our eyes on God. We're trusting Him each step of the way, and we're trusting Him with the outcome, whatever that may be."

As you read today's devotion, I'm sure you have some worries also. You worry about losing a job, paying bills, or medical problems. You may be worried about a wayward child, aging parents, or a crumbling marriage. It's so easy to let our circumstances determine our thoughts and feelings, isn't it? Today's verse tells us we have a choice about what we choose to think about. In other words, do we set our minds on our circumstances or on God?

It's also easy to listen to the lies of this culture, lies that say that faith is really impractical. Don't be deceived by this wrong thinking. In the midst of a whole lot of uncertainty, set your mind on the one certainty in life: God loves you and He is in control.

Dear Lord, thank You that in the midst of uncertain times, fearful times, and heart-aching times, You are the One I can be certain of. Thank You for being a Sure Thing, for now and always. Let my mind be filled with You, and then I will know Your peace which is supernatural. Lord, I pray that You will strengthen me in this trial, and during it, I ask that You will cause my heart and my mind to continue to turn to You. Lord, don't let this hard time cause me to be bitter or despairing. Instead, let me come out of it on the other side with a stronger trust in You. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Traveling Together: Thoughts on Women, Friendship and the Journey of Faith by Karla Worley

Trials for Today, Treasures for Tomorrow: Overcoming Adversities in Life by Janet Eckles

Financial Survival in Uncertain Times by Deborah Smith Pegues

Join us for more Everyday Life encouragement on topics such as marriage, finances, and relationships

Application Steps:
Are your thoughts fixed on the news of the media, or on God's Word? Consider limiting how much you watch or read the news. Don't be tempted to think that this is denying reality. It's not. It's setting your mind on things above.

You can direct your thoughts to God by reading Scripture, praying, or listening to praise music. Let these remind you of who God is and that He is in control.

Reflections:
Are you taking time to talk to God about all your fears, concerns, and worries?

Are you leaving your burdens with the Lord, or do you carry them around yourself trying to come up with a solution on your own?

Have you talked to a godly friend about your situation, or are you trying to hide your concerns from others so you appear strong?

Power Verses:
Psalm 46:10, "Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth." (NIV)

Isaiah 41:10, "'Do not fear, for I am with you; do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.'" (NAS)

John 14:27, "'Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.'" (NIV)

© 2009 by Melanie Chitwood. All rights reserved.

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12 Comments:

Blogger Walmart Fabulous said...

I want to thank you for your post today.... my 12 year old daughter is facing yet another major surgery and we had a very close call this time last year.... I have been struggling to give it over to God but hopefully this is just one more reminder to do what I already know that I have to. Maybe the upcoming day can be a little more peaceful if I print this out and go to it when anxiety arises!
Please remember a VERY special little girl in Arkansas on March 26th!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Moving?

My husband, and I are in the middle of house shopping. People look at us like it is a bad idea to move right now, but I really feel that is what God wants us to do.
We could stay in our condo which is almost paid off, but we are very limited to what we can do here. My hearts desire is to have a ladies bible study, and to have family, and friends over for cookouts in the summer.
To be able to have a home that if we need to take a family member in we can.
Please keep us in prayer

We did a similar thing: opened a business just before 9/11. Things didn't go as we had envisioned, but I think we learned more in the failure of the business than we ever would have if it had succeeded.

Not saying yours will fail, but just saying God allows that which will serve His purposes!

I pray there is encouragement in my words as I say you're right where you need to be with "we're trusting Him with the outcome, whatever that may be."

Anonymous Desiree said...

To the anonymous person about moving...
Now is the best time to buy a house! This year only the gov. is giving anyone who buys a house $8,000 that they do not have to pay back. Not to mention interests are a record low and house prices are nearly cut in half of what they use to be.
And your saying that you are feeling God tell you its time to move... Go for it!!!

Blogger yellodaisy said...

This post was such an encouragement for me. Our family has faced some difficult circumstance in the last few months. In my need to care for everyone, I fear that I have left God out and tried to do it in my own strength. And I am not strong enought. I needed this reminder to leave it in God's hands and just draw closer to Him.

Blogger Mickey said...

Your post was a blessing to me this morning. Our family is struggling. We are going on 2 years of trying to blend 2 families in need of becoming whole. My daughter refuses to fit in. She constantly has an attitude with everyone about everything. I know I need to let go and let God. It is hard for me to leave it with God once I let go. Please pray for her and our family.

God Bless!

Anonymous LaRae Weaver said...

To Walmart Fabulous: I worry about things that don't seem very worrisome.Why is your daughter going through surgery? Wat is in her body that is causing this? I use to live in Arkansas about a year ago. I live in Kansas now but Im just drawn to anyone that is in Arkansas cause I love it there.Will you please tell us a little bit more of what she is dealing with. I ask only because I want to pray very specifically. I can only imagine how difficult this must be for your daughter and you and your family. I will remember to pray for her on that day. God Bless ya'll as you move through this time, we love you and care about you very much!! I have marked it on my calendar and would love to hear how things go, please let us know when you can. With Love and Prayers, Your Sister in Christ, LaRae.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for this devotional. It is like God speaking right through you to me into my situation with health and anxiety. God IS awsome!!!

Anonymous Barb said...

Melanie,
My family can so relate to your story!

Over a year ago we felt the desire to move closer to my parents. We prayed and God opened many doors to make it happen or atleast get it started! We started building a new home at the beginning of last year before the economy crash.
We put up our home up for sale last year as well. As of this date our home still hasn't sold and our new home will be done April/MAy...I feel as though I have been through deep boughts of depression, anxiety, and worry. Sometimes I just can't handle it but then God is giving me such great devotions and speaking through them...like this one! Right now we live in the country and we have pretty much exhausted our opportunities for witnessing and that's another reason why we wanted to live closer to "civilization" in hopes for having our small group to our home or using it for Bible studies. I'm not sure what God is doing but He keeps reminding me that I need to trust Him...I have to admit that it's very hard when you think of the terrible things that could happen if we don't get this house sold! Please pray for me and my family. I'm scared

Blogger Walmart Fabulous said...

larae, my daughter has spina bifida and all your prayers are appreciated! Feel free to email me plasma.princess@gmail.com

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Barb,
We will through a similar situation. We closed our new home in 12/07. Our new home was a prayer answered by God. We did not sell our home. So, I changed my prayer and asked for God to send us renters before we had two pay for two mortgages, he was faithful. Sometimes, he doesn't answer in our way but he provides another way to help us through. As I type, I pray God will give you exactly what you need to ease the anxiety.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I like many am facing debt because we didn't sell our home. Student loan is being paid but not the amount necessary to keep it from defaulting. There seems to be more bills than money. Daughter's self esteem is leading her to boys that aren't good for her. She is facing a challenge with graduation, if she didn't past the math portion of her State test, which has been taken three times. I worry how her learning disability will impact her in college. Oh yeah, there is another worry, how will we send our twins to college in 2010. Of course, I worry about my husband's health, him passing his classes, etc. This year has been a challege. What get's me through, is looking back and saying, You are the same God that has provided, healed guided, and delivered. If he brought me through that he will bring me through this. Please pray for me that I trust God and leave everything at his feet so that I can enjoy today and now worry about tomorrow.

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