Life can be like a good time with a set of dominoes. You can set every piece up just right, you can have the right intentions, you can have your priorities in order and you can even have the right attitude, yet a slight gust of winds knocks one thing down and everything topples.
What are you left with? All the things that you needed to get done before, but now everything is a mess, out of order and twice the work to do to get things set up right again, so what do you do?
1. Have Faith
Don’t miss this: Our faith is not in faith, nor is it in our own abilities, the world, fate, luck or chance. Our faith is in Jesus Christ, so He is the one that we are going to trust to get us back on course.
Remember when Peter saw Jesus walking on water and decided he wanted in on that action? So Jesus commanded Peter to come to Him on the water and Peter obeyed:
But when he saw that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, “Lord, save me!” And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased.
- Matthew 14:30-32 (NKJV for the rest of this post)
It is probably this lesson that James, the brother our Lord, wanted us to consider when he wrote the following:
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind.
When various things come into our lives, like crashing of the waves, we must keep our eyes focused on Jesus, rather than the waves, so that we will not fear and fall down.
2. Evaluate The Cause
There are things that can knock down our dominoes that we absolutely can’t avoid. Tragedies, emergencies, surprises, they can all set us off course and there isn’t much we can do about them. If this is your case, you can skip right ahead to number 3.
If this is a self-inflicted wound, however, you may need to repent. This sounds harsh, but the word repent simply means to change your mind about something, which will then change your course of action because you disagree with your past actions. If you know you did something wrong, whether it is a sin or transgression, simply repent from that, turning to God and trusting in Him.
If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
1 John 1:9
3. Eliminate The Cause
Jesus gave many examples on what to do if something is causing you to sin in Mark Chapter 9:43-50, with the main point being that it would be better to cut off whatever is causing you to sin than to go to Hell. The scope of this post isn’t so much about Heaven and Hell, but the cause and effect should be the same.
If something is causing you to stumble from keeping on a schedule that helps you to maintain your focus on God, then eliminate that cause. If it is something that you can put into your schedule and you can keep it there and it isn’t a sin, then great. But if it is something that is a sin or is something that you can not maintain within your schedule, then just get rid of it!
Whatever it is that caused you to go off course, once you have evaluated and eliminated the cause, the next question is to how you get back on course? Thankfully, the answer is really pretty easy. All you really need to do is reset and get back into what you were doing before things went wrong, having removed the road block to future success.
This doesn’t mean that other road blocks will not come to get you. We are fighting a spiritual battle every day and there will always be something that tries to jump out and get you. We have to handle each one accordingly and then reset and move on without being discouraged, knowing that we can put our faith in Christ to continue.
5. Move Forward
Finally, after we have reset our course, we have to continue to live our lives by walking in the Spirit. Whenever I’ve done something that I think is great or something that I think is terrible, I remember these words that Paul wrote:
Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing [I do], forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3: 13-14
Have you come across any crashing waves that have set you off course? What are you going to do about them?