Paulette Harper – We must continually deal with recurring events in spite of our praying, fasting, and Bible study. There are reasons, some beyond our comprehension that God allows thorns to remain.
The Apostle Paul revealed the purpose of his thorn; it was to keep him humble. Some thorns come to bring awareness of how much we must rely and trust God. Other thorns have been placed in us as corrective methods to disciplines us– to keep us tethered to His will. David proclaimed, “It is good for me that I have been afflicted, that I might learn your statues” (Psalms 119:71 Amp).
The previous verse states, “Before I was afflicted, I went astray, your word do I keep [hearing, receiving, loving, and obeying it]” (Psalms 119: 67 Amp). If God does not allow afflictions or thorns to bother us at times, we might fail to seek Him. In order for us to remain humble and not become arrogant, God knows exactly what He needs to do to keep us from experiencing the repercussions of a haughty spirit. I’m sure David believed that the affliction was a great annoyance and brought much suffering. Later, he realized why God afflicted him. Eventually, David humbly admitted that he brought the affliction on himself by his own selfish behavior.
Here David attempts to offer insight on the cause of his affliction, First, David admits he went astray. His affliction was divinely designed to get him back on track and on course with God’s will and purpose. God will permit painful experiences to get us to align with His will, especially when we clearly lack a sense of focus. This is the primary reason the enemy places distractions in our path. Distractions are designed to derail us, to sidetrack us and cause us to redirect our attention—ultimately missing our mark. Distractions can create the illusion of being important issues, but in reality they aren’t—they’re only that—an illusion.
A distraction can be anything from a previous issue resurfacing, perhaps an old boyfriend, girlfriend or an old business acquaintances fighting to recapture your focus. Have you ever experienced a former acquaintance calling you from out of nowhere? These kinds of distractions can trigger an emotional imbalance, causing you to entertain thoughts that are far from the truth. Distractions will take your focus from what God is doing, causing confusion. The enemy knows if he can divert your attention away from the Father, he can draw you away–causing you to meditate and ponder things that only have the appearance of reality.
Have you ever been driving, minding your own business when all of a sudden an animal dashes out in front of your vehicle? Immediately, your first response is to avoid hitting the animal by sharply veering away from it –steering away from your original course. Unfortunately, we are sometimes unsuccessful in our attempts and we hit the very thing we tried so desperately to avoid. We kill “something” that didn’t belong in our path. This is the same way God expects us to deal with our distractions; we must “kill” them quickly, without hesitation. Recognize the distractions for what they are and immediately eliminate them! As long as you continue pondering the distractions, giving them all of your attention, they will remain.
What is your thorn or affliction in life?
What causes you the greatest irritation?
As a certified life coach, Paulette’s mission is to challenge you to define your purpose, and passion so you can discover your full potential for living your best life now.
Paulette has authored such books as That Was Then, This Is Now which achieved national recognition by being awarded a finalist in the 2009 Next Generation Indie Book Award and Completely Whole which was published under her own publishing company Thy Word Publishing and is the co-author of Victorious Living for Women. Her next book For Such a Time as This will be released in 2011 in addition to Victorious Living for Moms.
Paulette Harper Johnson serves in ministry with her husband Sr. Pastor Tony E. Johnson at Word of Faith Worship Center in Bradenton, FL.
Paulette is available to speak, train and facilitate at your upcoming event or conference.
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