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Why so many people feel stuck? – Words to Live by

Dr. Lonnie G. McCowan, pastor of Miracle Center of Ventura

By Pastor Lonnie G. McCowan

I want to help you understand why so many people feel stuck and maybe you feel that way. Many people are stuck in what I call the Vision of limitation. When we live in the bottom of the Vision of limitation we believe that what we see is real and we become trapped by an awareness of lack and struggle.  AND because we are surrounded by many other people who are also trapped in the bottom of the funnel, our beliefs and the beliefs we are surrounded with are also limited…It is within the bottom of the vision of limitations that we believe in chance, fate and circumstances beyond our control. It becomes difficult to believe in the possibility of freedom. And when all you can see from your limited vision is restriction and limitation, you live in a state of survival and that’s when you get stuck.

Now, here is the good news, you can move from the vision of limitation, to the vision of expectation. One limits you the other lifts you to the top. The key to staying at the top of the vision is to permanently change your beliefs. And you can do this consciously and deliberately.  You can take back your power. You can free yourself from the limitations of the vision of limitations system, and systematically remove your limitations! It all begins with awareness. Start by becoming conscious of who you are listening to. Are you listening to people who are living at the bottom of the vision or at the top? Pay attention and your consciousness will begin to shift immediately. Take a moment to think of something you struggle to resist. Maybe it’s a plate of fresh-baked cookies, the sale rack at your favorite store, or spending time with a fun-loving friend, who sometimes has a negative influence on you. Like many things in life, all three examples may be fine in moderation, but can establish unhealthy patterns when taken to excess.

Almost everyone has an unhealthy habit or dependency in some area of his or her life. The Apostle Paul describes what it is like to be stuck in a pattern you cannot escape:
(Romans 7:18–20, The Message)  I realize that I don’t have what it takes. I can will it, but I can’t do it. I decide to do good, but I don’t really do it. I decide not to do bad, but then I do it anyway. My decisions, such as they are, don’t result in actions.

Something has gone wrong deep within me and  gets the better of me every time.  We can all identify with this passage and what if feels like to be caught in cycles of unwanted behavior. Some days it feels like we’re losing the struggle to overcome our self-defeating habits, emotional pain, or debilitating addictions. We might even find momentary satisfaction as we engage in such habits or destructive behaviors.

Sometimes we try to lessen the pain we feel by taking drugs, by engaging in unhealthy relationships, or by watching something we shouldn’t on television. Other times we try to comfort our souls by eating that extra helping (or third or fourth!). When we allow ourselves to become trapped in these unhealthy ruts, we undermine our own greatness, believing the lies that “nothing good dwells in me” and that we are not strong enough to do any better. My friend that is simply not the truth.  You and I are created in the image and likeness of God. The person Paul describes in Romans 7 is not hopeless; he is simply a person who has yet to embrace the power to change that Christ offers. Paul says the solution to this struggle we face.  Like Paul, we have tried everything else and nothing helps, and we too are at the end of our rope, we discover that Christ is the only one who can and does help us. Come to my Sunday service at10 AM I will be revealing the secret to moving up and out of the vision of limitation to permanently staying in the vision of expectation. Once you know this, there is nothing you can’t accomplish.

Lonnie G. McCowan is pastor at The Miracle Center of Ventura, in Ventura, CA. He can be contacted through email at or by

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