Last year was quite an unexpected adventure for me. First, God took me to Hong Kong and I ended up preaching (for the first time and spontaneously) at a church and I was asked to lead worship… with no preparation. Now, that was a walk of faith, for sure. Next, God sent me to Brazil for three months, and Jesus and I had adventures along the way. Then, on that same trip, God said to me: Return to Brazil for a year and learn the language.
Well, I’ve been here a month so far. My student visa was approved, I’m studying Portuguese at a school here, God fully provided every financial need I had, and now, I’m waiting on Him. And of course, I’m learning every day.
Though it’s an adventure, it’s not without trials. I’m so far from fluent it’s not even funny, and I struggle with feeling useless at times, but God is good. He was teaching me today just to celebrate the progress I’ve made in Portuguese and stop trying to dominate this language and speak it fluently. Focus on improving, not perfection.
Do you ever feel discouraged like this in your walk with God?
I was thinking about it today that this is how we can become in our Christian walk. It can be discouraging when we see pride in ourselves, vanity, greed, jealousy, or when we sin and know we’ve done the wrong thing. When we try but fail again. It’s tempting to want to hide from God, to hide from others, or try to use something to make us feel better.
However, Jesus didn’t die for any of us to hide from Him but to restore the relationship between the Father and us. We can come boldly to His throne of grace and receive mercy to help in time of need (Hebrews 4:14-16). He is our high priest who was tempted as we are, faced the struggles we do, and yet was without sin. He is our friend whom we can go to in our weakness.
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.
Today, I am learning to celebrate progress, not perfection. I celebrate each time I choose to go on my knees in prayer instead of standing in anxiety or pride. I celebrate the times I choose to pray in Portuguese instead of English, though it’s slow and my vocabulary is very limited. God… thank you… for…. her. Um. And this day. I celebrate when I listen to God and give instead of keep because He knows it blesses people so much. I celebrate when I choose faith instead of fear.
I am choosing not to focus on failure, but to celebrate every time I see the Holy Spirit working in me.
Friend, it means there is hope.
God is real and He is with us!
We are certainly not going to get it right all the time, but we can continue to look to God for help, forgiveness, and grace. The most important thing is not to give up. He will never give up on you so don’t you give up on yourself. Keep calm and carry on!
As you are beginning this new year, remember to celebrate the good, the progress and the little achievements you make in your life. I know God is smiling.
Let’s celebrate our life with Him!
Love you, Princesses,