I didn’t always feel like pressing in. There were many moments I wanted to turn and walk – no – run away. Far away. It is the human impulse to turn tail and flee when life is barking at you back. But what good is running away if the dream still chases you down, refusing to let you go?What good is hiding, when the dream is the shadow in your darkness? What good is trying to walk away, when the dream trails your footfall?
Of looking into another’s lane. Bad move. I lost my footing. Lost my ground. Got turned around. I made the mistake – one so very fatal – comparison. It can strike at any time while on the journey to your dream. Perhaps that’s what need to happen to us sometimes to help us catch hold of our God and His vision for us – the one we keep thinking is too big to pursue. But, it is worth it. I’m preaching to the choir here because I find myself in unchartered territories. Nothing here is making any near or remote kind of sense. It is out of the galaxy of my mind. Here, there, and everywhere are dreams bursting and making difference. And here I am…silent. Wondering, waiting, talking myself down from the ledge of success. The dream is bigger than me. The burgeoning reality of the dream is frightful. How can it be pursued if I know not its direction? Is this that moment to take it and make it fly? Is this the time to risk?
To follow a dream.
To move forward.
To hope against all loss.
To keep moving forward.
One should not wait for life to be perfect as that seldom happens. Life happens in moments, in tiny increments called today. Hour by hour, second by second. One should not wait for things to change. Make change happen. For me this rings clear. For what I cannot control, I will not sit by and wait. I will focus on that which I can control–my responses, my choices, my thoughts. I will keep making my plans and allow God to direct my steps. Waiting is active. It is not just some passive event. It means moving forward in faith even when things appear the contrary. One should not wait for the perfect mix of ingredients. God so often meets us once we get going–moving forward, taking one step in front of the other. God is with us, and He is for us.
Just a little something to consider for today. Don’t stay stuck.
Hebrews 11 (NKJV)
By Faith We Understand
1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. 2 For by it the elders obtained a good testimony.
3 By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.
I’m no psychologist, so I can only speak from my experience and observations. I was pondering this notion of why we get stuck in life in the wee moments between sleep and awake. Is it something caused by outside forces, or is it something we do to ourselves. Maybe it’s even both. I’m not sure, but I have own ideas of what this means. I’d like to share them with you.
To be stuck implies lack of movement, groundedness, inability to take flight, glued down, nailed to the wall, frozen. I mean the list could go on and on, but I think you get the general idea. To be stuck means I’ve ceased living my own life, or that I’ve somehow given up on even trying. I know lots of us have been there, done that, but some of us are still there and maybe even with one foot hung in mid-air.
Rather than play the blame game, take ownership of life. We can be moving on along in many areas and stuck in only a few, or we can be completely stalled. Either way there is something we can do about it. It begins with me. I have to cease the navel gazing and comparison-shopping. I think you know what I’m talking about. We can get stuck because we get so busy looking at what other people are doing that we forget we have lives, dreams, goals, purpose, and passions all our own. Perhaps we think them not good enough, uninspired, unexciting, dull, and noncompetitive—but I say to you, is that really why we live? To measure our selves against the standard of others? To shrink back from living our own lives simply because they don’t match what others seem to be doing? To make excuses because we are afraid? We are only but half living if we are not living out what is deep within.
I think of the apostle Paul. He didn’t allow himself to get caught up in what other people were doing. He lived for the glory of One. He sought to live only for One. Paul wasn’t about getting stuck in life and playing the woe-is-me card. He lived boldly and bravely. He exhorted his brothers and sisters in Christ to do the same. Here’s what he wrote to the Corinthians in regard to faith, wisdom, and living in Christ. He wrote, “11 For his Spirit searches out everything and shows us God’s deep secrets. No one can know a person’s thoughts except that person’s own spirit, and no one can know God’s thoughts except God’s own Spirit. 12 And we have received God’s Spirit (not the world’s spirit), so we can know the wonderful things God has freely given us. 15 Those who are spiritual can evaluate all things, but they themselves cannot be evaluated by others.”
We each are unique. We each have meaning and purpose, and it has nothing to do with copying what others are doing nor looking to them for success tips. When we start looking to other, we can get stuck. Later on in chapter 4 Paul exhorted the Corinthians to be accountable for living their lives. He wrote, “2 Now, a person who is put in charge as a manager must be faithful. 3 As for me, it matters very little how I might be evaluated by you or by any human authority. I don’t even trust my own judgment on this point. 4 My conscience is clear, but that doesn’t prove I’m right. It is the Lord himself who will examine me and decide. 5 So don’t make judgments about anyone ahead of time—before the Lord returns. For he will bring our darkest secrets to light and will reveal our private motives. Then God will give to each one whatever praise is due.” Each of us is accountable for living lives of our own no matter what we are doing in life—married, unmarried, widowed, or divorced. Our life status is no reason to stop living a full and abundant life.
So here’s a little something to consider for today. Are you stuck, or do you have forward momentum? Is one foot raised in the air toward active movement, or have you buried your head in the sand. Well, time to rise up. Time to live. Time to stand your ground and live your life.
Baby steps. You don’t have to do it all at once. Faith happens one step at a time. So I’ve decided to follow Paul’s lead. What have I to lose? The weight and burden of false believing, comparing myself to others, and not owning up to the honor and value of my own life. Enough! I will look at my life and say, “it’s worth living and living well!” In the midst of watching all around, I will remember that I have a life of my own, and I belong to Christ. Look around in jealousy? No. Look around in despair thinking I’ve only half-lived my life? No. Look around and mercilessly judge myself in the light of others? No. Not going to do it. Getting unstuck means taking ownership of me—lock, stock, and barrel. It means honoring God by living out all he’s placed in my heart even if it goes against the grain. Who cares!?!
I’m only accountable to One. He gets the final say in my life—in all our lives. So now when I look around, I can be genuinely happy for all around me because I know they’re living out their lives abundantly just as I am. We’re each running the race before us. The finish line is just in front of each of us. Don’t look to the right. Don’t look to the left. The Father is just ahead of us, and I can hear Him saying, “Come on. You can do it. Keep your eyes on me. I’m watching, and I’ll pick you up if you should fall.” Here I come, Lord…running after you, looking right at you!
Need a little extra lift? Check out these bible verses
1 Corinthians 1:11-16; 4:1-5; 12
2 Corinthians 5:9-11
1 Peter 1:13-16
Galatians 1:15-17; 5; 6:1-5