Sometimes, and I hope this is no secret to those of you who read my posts regularly, I get overwhelmed. I struggle with unrealistic expectations of perfection and knowing my limits. But I’m learning, all the time. This past February, I met Ashley at FCWC, and we clicked over blogging, WordPress glitches, and being big sisters. She’s tech-savvy and smart, witty and wise, and a joy to bring to my corner today.
Oh, and she’s the reason I figured out how to add a Newsletter subscriber page.
Do you ever imagine the person God wants you to be?
My perfect self is more compassionate and kind; she’s a better daughter, friend, and wife; she reads her Bible daily, prays always, and is completely focused on God.
My perfect self is a pretty cool chick.
I’m not there yet.
I know this is who God wants me to be, and I’m working on it. But, while my salvation was complete the moment I believed, being perfected by God is a process, or a journey.
Like any significant journey, we can’t start and finish in one day. In fact, God seems to have a plan for how far we should go each day and what we should accomplish along the way.
This is great news! Why?
There is a huge gap between who I am today and who I’m meant to be. When I focus on that gap, I get overwhelmed and want to give up. But when God breaks it into small steps and reveals each step to me as I need it from moment to moment…well, that’s more doable.
I didn’t have to be the perfect friend or daughter today; I just needed to visit with my mentor and call Mom on the drive home. I don’t have to publish a book today; I just need to write a few sentences each day.
These are small steps, but they’re part of the greater journey.
No Skipping Ahead!
Sometimes I get excited and want to skip ahead to what I think God has planned for my future. (I’ll get up at 5am tomorrow and read my Bible and pray and write three blogs and finish my book and….)
That’s how I get in trouble. Not only do I miss the lessons I was supposed to learn today but—because I’m not following God’s timing—I fumble tomorrow’s lessons, too. I end up bogged down in confusion, worry, and even legalism, all because I tried to get ahead of God.
Jesus said we shouldn’t worry about tomorrow, for each day has its own trouble (see Matthew 6:31). I think He meant that He gives us the proper portion of opportunities and lessons for each day—as well as the grace to get through them and learn what we need to know.
We don’t have to borrow trouble from tomorrow; we’ve got enough on our plate for today!
I encourage you to seek God’s will for you in this moment. If you’re trying to skip ahead to tomorrow’s plan, then stop. Don’t put more demands on yourself than what God is putting on you right now.
Be content to wrestle with what God gives you today. Then you’ll be one step closer to the person He created you to be.
Ashley L. Jones received her M.A. in Biblical Studies so she could learn how to dig deeper into God’s Word. She uses her blog, BigSisterKnows.com, to encourage others to see God as alive and relevant by showing how the Bible applies to their everyday lives. She brings this same passion to her other projects, including her current focus, Girls with Gusto, a Christian living book for young women on how to navigate the eight major steps of the spiritual journey. If Ashley isn’t working or writing, she’s outside taking pictures with her husband Robby, and their cat Sue.
Show Ashley and Just Write Life some comment love. We’ll get back to you because there’s nothing better than a good heart connection.