Have you ever felt like you just want to leave your environment and start over? Many of us do! We look for the best version of our lives. Sometimes a change of venue, whether it be a new living space, a new city, or a new job, can bring a brighter future.
The question is, though, what are you bringing with you? There’s an old adage that says, “No matter where you go, you bring yourself with you.” Sometimes the change we’re looking for is within us and not surrounding us. Our “inner lives” determine much of our “outer lives” and how we see life and its circumstances and possibilities.
Jesus Himself talks about life in a way that was (and remains) new and powerful. He said, “The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows). (John 10:10, AMP) WOW! We’ve had a year full of real and perceived enemies, and behind the stealing, killing, and destroying is the enemy of our souls. What a helpful, ongoing revelation to us that Jesus is life, and He came to give us life that cannot be overcome. As we receive Him, the author of life provides abundant life on the inside of us now and forever.
Living in that abundant life requires something from us – allowing God to lead us. John the Baptist preached repentance, Jesus preached repentance, as did Paul and Peter in the New Testament. See what Peter says: “So repent (change your inner self – your old way of thinking, regret past sins) and return to God – seek His purpose for your life), so that your sins may be wiped away (blotted out, completely erased), so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord (restoring you like a cool wind on a hot day); (Acts 3:19 AMP) I don’t know about you, but I really like a cool wind on a hot day. There are many days when we need relief, and He provides that.
A clean conscience before God, where we are not afraid to visit Him or to welcome Him – that presence of God fills our inner life. The Prince of Peace Himself inside us can guide us through difficult and truly awful situations by helping our minds and hearts stay peaceful. As we allow God to lead us, we can see His guidance and grace in the midst of the storms. His presence in our lives changes our inner lives. As a result, our outer behavior, our words and our actions, become more peaceful. We see life from the perspective of His words, which assure us that He is good, He loves us, and He is in complete control. No matter how out-of-control life appears, He is still in us and with us. He knows our needs, and we are welcomed to ask Him for what we need.
So we don’t have to necessarily change our location to find an increase of peace or joy. We don’t even have to hitchhike to Mars. Repentance, talking with Jesus, and allowing Him to lead us can cause us to have true life on the inside of us, and that life is full. It brings a rest, a peace, and a joy that gives us and abundant life, no matter what our circumstances or surroundings may be. Peace and abundant life to you.