Rev. Margaret Minnicks is an ordained Bible teacher. She writes many articles that are Bible lessons.
Being in a good place should be everybody's desire. However, being in a good place does not mean the same thing for everybody.
For some people, being in a good place is having a big house, two cars in their garage, and a big bank account. For others, being in a good place is being popular among their peers. As for me, being in a good place is none of those things. Being in a good place for me is being all I can be physically, mentally, intellectually, and spiritually.
A Good Place: Definition
Being in a good place is to be in a place of peace and comfort. It is a place of harmony without chaos. It is the confidence of safety and security because of God's protection and provisions. It is being bold enough to go to God concerning any matter because you have a personal, intimate relationship with Him and you are sure that He cares.
I didn't grow up being in a good place. I did the best that I could to survive. However, my greatest desire has always been not merely to survive, but to thrive in that good place of rest that only God can give.
Now that you know my definition of being in a good place, let me tell you how I got there.
A Long Journey
Being in a good place for me did not happen over night. In fact, it took many restless nights to get to where I am today. It is indeed true that "weeping might endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning" (Psalm 30:5).
Even though my journey has been long, challenging, and often hard, I leaned on and depended on the only constant in my life. That has always been God Almighty. I was introduced to Him at a very early age. I still remember those blue velvet posters with scriptures written in gold that my mother had on walls all over the house. I admit they were just words to me during my youth. I memorized them and they were in my head. As time went on, the scriptures made their way six inches down to my heart, and I began to live them.
As I grew, the scriptures became a part of my life. As I continued to read the Bible, I began to use the words as life applications. I didn't just read the scriptures, they became a very significant part of me.
Below are just a few lessons I learned along the way to my good place. They are listed in no particular order of importance because all of them are important to me. All of them have been stepping stones to the good place I am in today.
I was willing to give up my Isaac.
I learned to be willing to give up my Isaac like Abraham. God instructed him to sacrifice his son of promise. God never asked me to do that, but some things I know I had to give up to serve God at my best. The biblical passage tells us that Abraham was willing to give up Isaac. In the end, he didn't have to because God prepared a ram in the thickets to be sacrificed instead (Genesis 22:1-18). God has been preparing rams in the thickets for me all my life.
I kept the thorn in my flesh.
Paul had an inconvenience in his life that the Bible called "a thorn in his flesh." Paul prayed three times for the thorn to be removed. After God explained to him that His grace was sufficient, Paul learned to live with his thorn and never addressed the issue again (2 Corinthians 12:7–10). Like Paul, I am keeping my thorn and living with it because I know God's grace is sufficient.
I give out of my need.
One of the greatest lessons I learned about giving is to give out of my need. Like the widow who gave her two copper coins, I give what I need the most (Luke 21:1-4). The widow of Zarephath had a little flour and a little oil to cook the last meal for her and her son. She believed what the prophet Elijah told her and her sacrificial giving was a breakthrough for a miracle. She and her son had enough food to last for three years during the famine and drought (1 Kings 17:7-16).
I pray that God be with me in my fiery furnace and lion's den.
I used to ask God to take my troubles away like most people do. I used to cry out to God and say, "Please help me, Lord, to get through this situation." I learned from the Hebrew boys to pray that God will come into the fiery furnace with them inside of getting them out. This is an effective method of praying for any situation whether you are in a fiery furnace (Daniel 3:8-25) or a lion's den (Daniel 6:12-28).
I learned to embrace my spiritual seasons.
It has been liberating to understand spiritual seasons. Just as the seasons of the year have certain characteristics, so do spiritual seasons. There are times when God wants me to sow seeds, and there are times when He tells me to wait for the process to take place. By following His instructions, I reap a bountiful harvest every single time.
I accepted my journey to the promised land.
In order to get to the promised land, I had to leave Egypt, go through the Red Sea, be in the desert for 40 years, cross the Jordan River, and enter the promised land. There were boundaries and barriers along the way, but I followed the pillar of cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night (Book of Exodus).
I am now a Mary in a Martha's world.
I used to struggle trying to keep up with the world. I was a Martha until I began to practice the discipline of sitting at Jesus' feet like Mary (Luke 10:38-42). That was a life-changing lesson for me. Now, I never let a day go by without sitting at Jesus' feet and listening to what He says to me.
The above lessons are only a few that God designed just for me. Surely, you have your own lessons to learn based on who you are and what God wants you to do with your life. Know that until you learn certain lessons along the way, you will never be in a good place.
I pray that those who have read this article will begin to think about the lessons they have learned during their spiritual journey. I also pray that they will end up in a good place as I have.