how are you doing…seriously?

Has anybody asked lately, “how are you doing?” And you give a standard reply from “fine”, “making a living” or the often facetious, “living the dream.”  But then to your discomfort they ask again, “seriously how are you doing?”  Sometimes we can affirm our previous response, but many times we truly don’t want to answer because even though we are okay in one sense, we are struggling with things in life.  Many times, the struggle has to do with mental, emotional, and spiritual issues that are constantly being stressed, challenged, overwhelmed, and discouraged.  But that is life, right?

Life can be a challenge for sure, but the believer should deal with turmoil, stresses, challenges, and discouragement in a spiritual Jesus-oriented manner, which doesn’t change the reality of various adversities, rather just the manner in which they affect our daily lives.  A Jesus-oriented manner has to do with how we process what happens around us, it is either I see life thought the lens of the Spirit or I see life through man’s lens, either I react to adversity in my own wisdom, or I respond to adversity in Jesus’ wisdom, do I trust myself or do I trust God?  You can see there is a difference.

How we function in the challenges of life today truly depends on what we genuinely believe.  The adversity we experience in life reveals what we genuinely believe.  The walk for believers is not going to be void of challenges or adversity, but our walk can be filled with His joy, His love, and His peace if we approach every day in total awareness that our life in Jesus.  He is not a sidekick, not a quick fix, not a religious icon, not a spiritual concept for when things go wrong or get tough, Jesus is Savior and Lord.  Philippians 1:21 tells us, “For me, to live is Christ and to die is gain” and Galatians 2:20 says, “I have been crucified in Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” You may say great but how does that change my circumstance, or how does that help deal with adversities?  It doesn’t change circumstances, adversities or challenges, it changes you!  If your life is centered in Jesus then what do these trials in life truly mean, it means they cannot separate the One who lives in you and cannot take away your value as a child of God, nor the ability to overcome in and through His Spirit, actually adversity, challenges, and pressing circumstances becomes opportunities to see Jesus work in your life, which becomes a blessing, so that we can “Rejoice always, pray constantly, give thanks in everything for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18) It is a matter of allowing the Holy Spirit to shape the way you see and think about life so that it aligns with Jesus and His Word. Keep your mind set on Jesus and life will be a beautiful thing even in adversity. However, a disclaimer is to be added, if you are walking in disobedience to Jesus, practicing sin that you know is not right, then you will be miserable as a believer.  Good news for you, though.  Repent, meaning get right with Jesus, turning away from sin and disobedience and He will forgive you and restore your fellowship with Him.  Then you’ll be back on track, and when someone asks, “seriously how are you doing?”  You can answer, “I am doing great and blessed in Jesus” regardless of the adversity, challenges, or circumstances.