Grave Tending

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“The life you THINK you want could be stopping the life God MEANT for you to live.”
– Matthew Barnett

“So don’t you see that we don’t owe this old do-it-yourself life one red cent. There is nothing in it, nothing at all. The best thing to is to give it a decent burial and get on with your new life. God’s Spirit beckons. There are things to do and places to go! This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It is adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike, ‘what’s next Papa?”’.

Romans 8:12-15 MSG

Having dreams and goals are vitally important to help us make choices, take the right opportunities and say no to the wrong ones. But even “the dream” can become an idol when we refuse to surrender it to God. We can easily slip into a habit of worshipping the “what if” and “what may be” or “what I want it to be.”

When you are tending regrets and spending all your energy in the cemetery of unmet needs, goals or dreams, it is difficult to participate in a new life in Christ. The verse above is worded in the immediacy of now and is a moment by moment adventure.

When God sends you a vision of your future, it is to get you moving in the right direction. When He lays a burden on your heart it is to pull towards His purpose for you. He does not lift the call, but He will refine and redefine it constantly.

“What’s next Papa?”

I will leave this “dream” in His hands. I will live in anticipation of fulfilling it daily in any way He chooses and in the opportunities before me. I will give the past a decent burial, even the good things that never happened. Those are trickier, I think.

I don’t want anything less. I will get up and walk out of this emotional cemetery and with a skip to my step ask God, “What is next?”.

What grave have you been tending? What is the “dream” that is holding you back from being fully present in the beautiful life Jesus has for you?

 

Where Are You Going?

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Most people think to change their life, they need to change their behavior. God says to change your direction and your behavior will follow.

“Now this is what the LORD Almighty says: ‘Give careful thought to your ways.”’
Haggai‬ ‭1:5‬ ‭NIV

This verse isn’t just about what you’re doing but about where you are going. It’s not about the way you are living your life but where your life is headed. 

Where are you headed? 

If you keep doing what you’re doing, do you want to go where you’re going?

The phrase “Give careful thought to your ways” is actually a Hebrew figure of speech that literally means “put your heart on your roads”.

In other words: Where will your heart be down the road from today?  

It is easy to get caught up in bad habits to survive the current crisis, surrender to discouragement because of the current disappointment or spew toxic words at the ones you love because of the current stress you are experiencing. The question is, “If you keep doing what you are doing what will happen to your relationships? Your body? Your heart? Is this where you want to end up? 

Is what you are doing today taking you down a road you want to be on tomorrow?

If you don’t want to go that way, stop right now. Turn around. Head in a new direction and it will eventually lead to the right road.

“I am so glad I waited this long to change,” said no one ever.