It’s a new year which means a natural time to reflect. To look back on what happened throughout the past year and set your sights on the future as the new year unfolds. 2020 is not only a new year but in fact a whole new decade.
It is so important to be intentional in our lives, to purposely set our gaze and move towards what God has for us in this new season. Have you taken any time to reflect and project?
What does it mean or look like in your life to BE the difference? Many of us have an embedded desire to do something great, to make a difference in the world, to know that our life matters. To be apart of something bigger than ourselves, something significant.
For myself I am realizing it starts with simple everyday choices. Intentional choices. Showing up in the small things one day at a time turns into greater things over time. I am watching this take place throughout the last six months as I choose to show up day by day at the gym, doing the prescribed workouts. No one single workout changed everything for me; it was the consistency of taking one small step each and everyday. After six months I can look back and see there have been some significant changes happening here! My body has transformed, my skills and abilities have progressed, and my mindset has been changing to realize I can do things I never thought I could.
There is a famous poem by John Godfrey Saxe titled The Blind Men and the Elephant. Maybe you’ve heard of it. Six wise men, each blind, encounter an elephant. If not, give it a read, it’s really good. Each of the men experience a different part of the animal and end up disagreeing with one another as to what this creature actually looks like. None realize that each has experienced only a part of the entire picture.
I liken my own faith experience to this poem. When I became a Christian, I gravitated towards one particular “stream” of Christianity. The churches I attend, podcasts I listen to, and books I read, can tend to all speak the same language and describe things in similar fashion. While great, if I’m not careful I’m only experiencing a distinct aspect of the Body of Christ.
There are times in life when someone reveals a new, unique perspective about a situation and you never look at it the same again. It’s as if there was a hidden layer just below the surface that you never knew about because you didn’t see it until someone showed it to you. It reminds me of how polarized glasses allow you to see things under the surface of water more clearly.
Have you ever heard one of those object lessons that uses a three-legged stool as its example? Everything from team building to politics, finances to psychology has been explained using the humble three-legged stool.
The example seems so worn out. Surely a more interesting analogy can be found to describe anything with three parts. Then again, its power and simplicity in illustrating a point is what makes it so common. Like steering wheels, there’s a reason every car has one; it gets the job done better than anything else.
Is God a good gift giver? Would you go as far as saying He’s a great gift giver?
Last week, our podcast focused on God’s fatherly traits. This week, we’re meditating on His role of provider. God’s love is consistent, and He never forgets even the smallest details. How we view God determines how we approach God, and how we approach God reveals our [perceived] relationship with Him.
I often think of God as our father. The most perfect, loving father there has ever been and will ever be. That’s my basis for how I picture God’s way of interacting with us; a loving father who desires nothing more than a great relationship with his children. One thing about great fathers, even good fathers, is that they love to provide for their children.
It felt like spring was breaking through in Huntington Beach’s Central Park as we found ourselves in its “Secret Garden.” Fresh blossoms were starting to release a delightfully sweet fragrance, and as we walked through the garden I noticed a few different flowers beginning to bloom. These winding little paths must be stunning when the flowers come out in their full glory.
Shocked to discover how far I had come, I questioned how I got here in the first place. A slippery slope, so easy to slide down. Little by little without realizing it I had convinced myself that my comfort is the greatest prize. It’s one of those prizes that comes with a sense of empty fulfillment once attained. It’s a mixture of discouragement and humour as I look at this thing I worked so hard to attain. Discouragement from being duped into believing it was the right thing, humourous because I was the one who duped myself.
There’s something about transformation that I absolutely love! Be it makeovers, house flipping shows or personal transformation, I love it all. What is transformation anyway? What do you think of when you hear that word?