How to Get Unstuck

Are you stuck? We all get stuck at some point. Is it an addiction you just can’t lick? Is it depression that just won’t end? Is it a mid-life crisis, realizing you’ve ended up with some boring, dead-up life and your dreams have all but vanished? Feel like you just can’t get there from here? I’ve been stuck. This post is a plan for getting unstuck.

Here’s how you get unstuck. Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6), and he is the path for getting unstuck. I know that sounds all Christian Happy Quippy, like those trite and insincere things we say to each other on Sunday mornings. Don’t bounce to another web page, hang with me here a minute. There’s a very practical path hidden in that verse that we’re going to unpack in this post. So read on, Precious Stuck One, for the path to freedom.

1) Jesus is the way.

This is where it starts. Commitment on our part. Jesus is already committed to walk this path with us. He’s sacrificed his life. He’s uber-invested in your freedom. Are you as invested in your own freedom as he is?

We think we are, but are we really? Are we committed to the freedom Jesus wants for us, or only to freedom on our terms? Are we committed to success that’s easy, convenient, doesn’t hurt, and doesn’t violate our rights? Sometimes we’re comfortable with our bondage.

Are we willing to sacrifice for success on his terms? His success comes through painful perseverance, long suffering, laying down our rights, and dying to ourselves. Are we willing? His success is hard fought, but it’s much more satisfying, and it comes with a calling and an authority. We have authority over what we’ve been delivered from.

2) Jesus is the truth.

If we’re going to get unstuck, we need to be friends with the truth. The truth is often not politically correct, comfortable, safe, or easy. But it is good, and it is true. It’s time to agree with God’s truth.

When the culture (or our desires) clash with what God’s revealed in his word, we have to let God win every time. For example:

The culture says you can sleep with anyone, any time. But we wait for marriage, because:

Do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. (1 Corinthians 6:9-10 NIV)

The culture says we’re a cosmic accident. But we believe we’re intentionally designed by God, because:

You created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. (Psalm 139:13-16 NIV)

The culture says you can change your gender and your race. But we don’t recreate ourselves and decide who we want to be. That’s actually spiritual rebellion. We discover who God’s made us to be, because:

What sorrow awaits those who argue with their Creator. Does a clay pot argue with its maker? Does the clay dispute with the one who shapes it, saying, “Stop, you’re doing it wrong!” Does the pot exclaim, “How clumsy can you be?” How terrible it would be if a newborn baby said to its father, “Why was I born?” or if it said to its mother, “Why did you make me this way?” (Isaiah 45:9-10 NLT)

The culture says we have to earn our value and the right to be loved. But we know we have intrinsic value. Just because we exist, God loves us, because:

God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)

The culture says we can terminate a pregnancy if it’s inconvenient. But we trust God and walk with him through the pain of single parenthood, because:

[God is] a father to the fatherless, a defender of widows. (Psalm 68:5a) [That totally includes single moms.]

The culture says anyone developing emotional problems after an abortion was weak to start with. But we speak the truth about trauma and offer God’s hope, healing, forgiveness, and acceptance to everyone who wants it, because:

He has sent me [Jesus] to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion—to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. (Isaiah 61:1b-3a)

The culture says to ship the illegal aliens back where they belong. But we do good to the foreigners and the aliens among us specifically to honor the Lord, because:

When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them. The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the Lord your God. (Leviticus 19:33-34)

God’s word needs to define our opinions. We take the word of God at face value, and we’re willing to change our minds.

3) Jesus is the life.

We live his adventure. He’s the breath in our lungs and the hope in our heart. He is the life we live. Our life revolves around him.

Jesus is our lifestyle. Are we living in the light of God’s truth? Or are we living in the culture’s comfortable lies? Are we committed to sexual purity in our lives, waiting for marriage, or have we rationalized a sinful lifestyle? Do we tithe and give generously, or do we live in fear with a scarcity mindset? Do we spend intimate time with the lover of our soul, Jesus our lover-king, or do we just throw him a bone and check the box on Sundays?

Is our life style bent around ourselves and our comfort, or around him and his truth? This isn’t legalism. This is passion. When you’re passionate for your lover, pleasing them is light and pleasurable. If we’re passionate for Jesus, we can’t live in a way that breaks his heart.

In the West, we like to compartmentalize everything. We have our family box, our work box, our entertainment box, our church box, and our God box. We like to think that as long as our God box is the most important box, God’s happy. But that’s totally not true! God does not want to be in the most important box. He wants to be the most important thing in every box.

You could say it this way. Jesus doesn’t want to be the most important thing in our lives. He wants to be the only thing. Coach Lombardi didn’t realize he was talking about Jesus when he made his famous quote, “Winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing.” But he was. Jesus is Winning!

And the only way for us to win at life and get unstuck is to think so, too. When Jesus is everything, all the other things fall into place. Not that we won’t have problems, we will. Sometimes really painful, unexpected ones that hit us like a sledgehammer. But our focus isn’t on the problem, it’s on Jesus and figuring out what he’s doing in our lives through the problem. It’s about being real and honest with him, telling him the truth about our pain and accepting his joy in the middle of it.

So there’s the blueprint for freedom. Commit to Jesus the way, agree with Jesus the truth, and live Jesus as your lifestyle. The result is a deeper level of freedom and intimacy with him than you’ve ever known.

Does this resonate with you? Does it challenge you? What parts? Please share on social media and tell us what you think in the comments below. It’s time to hear from you.

2 replies
  1. Randi
    Randi says:

    “Christian Happy Quippy,” haha!

    This is a good post. Regarding the need to not put God in a box, it occurred to me recently that I give God full rein when it comes to things like prayer group, which leads to lots of good fruit … but I never think to let Him drive my teaching or other things that aren’t directly related to prayer and the Church. When God wants us to give Him our whole lives, that doesn’t just mean being open to the possibility of God intervening…it’s also consulting Him and trusting Him in everything, even if it seems to be so “small” or “secular” as to be our responsibility alone.

    • Dave Wernli
      Dave Wernli says:

      Good thoughts, Randi, well said. Like an attentive lover, God wants to share every aspect of our life. He’s so into the small and secular. 🙂


Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *