18 So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.
2 Corinthians 4:18 (NLT)
I don’t remember knowing anyone on earth who has no problems. The difference between winners and losers is not that winners don’t have problems. They do. The difference lies in how they handle their problems. Losers focus on their problems and became discouraged. Then they will resort to all kinds of destructive acts – alcohol, drugs, denial etc.
How should a christian’s response be? According to the above verse, we don’t let them occupy our minds. When we are preoccupied to our problems, they become big in our minds. They can cloud other areas and become the only visible thing we can see. They can even cloud out the solutions. However the Bible says all our problems are temporary. They will be gone soon. Don’t waste time on it. Focus instead on eternal things that are not seen. Set your mind on the eternal prosperity of God. To do that we need to strengthen our faith.
It takes faith to believe in health when we are very sick.
It takes faith to believe we are prosperous and exceedingly rich when we are seeing unpaid bills and empty bank account every day.
It takes faith to focus on the unseen when we are troubled by the “seen” things everyday.
What is faith?
1 Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.
Hebrews 11:1 (NLT)
It gives us hope when we can’t see it. It assures us and gives us confidence that no matter how bad the situation looks like, there is always a way out. There is always a solution for every problem. Once we have reach this state, we will be in position to receive the prosperity from God.
24 I tell you, you can pray for anything, and if you believe that you’ve received it, it will be yours.
Mark 11:24 (NLT)
Only though faith can prayers be effective. Once it happens, all our problems will melt away. Therefore it is crucial to keep our thoughts under strict control. Say this,
“Thoughts I am your master. You will obey all my instructions. I command you to focus only on the promises of God. I forbid you to think negative thoughts. I forbid you to focus on the negative circumstances and be discouraged. I instruct you to keep thinking the Word Of God and be filled with hope. I am the boss and you will obey me.”
The moment you are able to keep your mind under control, you are able to go through any battle in life and be victorious.
8 We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair.
9 We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed.
10 Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies.
11 Yes, we live under constant danger of death because we serve Jesus, so that the life of Jesus will be evident in our dying bodies.
12 So we live in the face of death, but this has resulted in eternal life for you.
2 Corinthians 4:8-12 (NLT)
What is the writer saying?
In short, no matter how big our problems are, no matter how many times we have been knocked down, no matter how much we are suffering right now, we will not give up, we will not surrender.
What gives him such strength, if not for his faith? He must be convinced beyond doubt that no matter what the circumstances were saying, he is going to overcome it. No matter what the challenges are, he will win, he will never be defeated. Challenges yes, defeat no.
This option is available to all of us. All it takes is a decision. Will you take full control of your mind or allow your mind to take full control of you?