Sometimes people are more satisfied with old problems than new solutions. – Jim Wideman
Ever feel like life is overwhelming and the pressure continues to build? You’re not alone. If you were to walk downtown, enter your local coffee shop, and strike up conversations with a few strangers, I guarantee you’ll eventually hear words like busy, tired, overworked, and stressed out. But if you were to turn the conversation and offer solutions, you will hear excuses and reasons why your advice will not work for them. The truth is we are often more comfortable sitting in our usual problems than running after new answers.
Jesus encountered a man in Jerusalem, by the sheep gate pool, who had been ill for thirty-eight years. Knowing Jesus, you might think that he would immediately reach down to heal the man, but instead Jesus asked him a question: “Would you like to get well?” The man replied with excuses as many of us do, “I can’t, sir, for I have no one to put me into the pool when the water bubbles up. Someone else always gets there ahead of me.” But Jesus was gracious and said to him, “Stand up, pick up your mat, and walk!” And the man became well, picked up his mat and began to walk. (John 5:1-9)
So, would you like to get well? Are you willing to do the hard work and seek after new solutions to the stresses in your life? While you are wrestling with this question, here are 3 truths from John 10:1-21 where Jesus shares the parable of the Good Shepherd.
1. Know and follow the voice of truth. “[The sheep] follow him because they know his voice” (4).
Are you taking the time, making yourself available to hear the truth? How’s your prayer life? Are you spending time in scripture? Do you take the time to be still and know God? If you find your tires spinning maybe you just need to start by going to Him who has the answers.
2. Eliminate distractions and inadequate input. “They won’t follow a stranger; they will run from him because they don’t know his voice” (5).
Are you taking the time to discern and eliminate the voices that distract you? Do your mentors base their knowledge and advice on scripture? Or are you listening to “advice” that is based on someone’s opinion, not the Word of God?
3. Jesus came to give you a satisfied life. “The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life” (10).
The life of a believer should reveal traits like love, joy, peace, and patience. While we all have times of stress and difficulty, we need to remember that Jesus said His yoke is easy and His burden is light. (Matthew 11:29-30)
Would you like to get well? Prove it.