1. Much as I may not like what is going on in my life or that of my children and grandchildren or friends, I really do not know what needs to be done to make things better. I have tried ranting, pleading, manipulating, demanding, whining, plotting, forcing, and coercing. I have often managed to make thing worse by these behaviors but I have never made anything better.
2. I have no control if I relay only on my own resources. I do eventually run down from exhaustion and an orgy of frustration, and when I stop and acknowledge that I have not been left in charge (and would be inadequate to the task if I were) then I can begin to hear God singing love, hope, wisdom, power and restoration into my life.
3. The more I am able to surrender my own ideas of what needs to happen and be still and patient, the more I find I am used by God to offer comfort, hope, faith that their lives matter, and that, no matter where they are or what mistakes they have made, God loves them and welcomes them.
4. When I let God have authority over my life He finds plenty of worthwhile things for me to do. In fact, I wish I were triplets so I could do more of the delightful, blessed, powerful things that I see where my gifts can make a difference. I don't expect to ever be out of things to do as long as I live, because each person I meet represents an opportunity to fellowship or minister or rejoice.
5. As I look back over my life I realize that many experiences, trials I have had, sorrows I have born, mistakes I have made have been made valuable as I seek to be the hands and feet of God. Lessons hone my natural abilities or teach me things I lack altogether. Challenges overcome teach me tenderness and compassion for folks I had previously had little patience with. Sorrows brake my heart of stone and give me a heart God can work with so I know more deeply how utter reliable is my God.
Author Corrie Ten Boom is quoted: "This is what the past is for! Every experience God gives us, every person he puts in our lives is the perfect preparation for the future that only he can see."
So, whatever is going wrong in your life, ask God to show you how you can make it count for something important. It is a prayer God has always answered "yes" to me.