Archive | September 2016

Mirror, Mirror

20587117934_e9dc15fb6b_o (1).jpgI know the question well. “Mirror, mirror on the wall whose the fairest of them all?”. Every time that question was asked in Snow White the mirror always said the Queen until the day that Snow White was born. That day the Queen was faced with the idea of her own mortality. She was forced to look at her true self in the mirror and examine what was most important to her.

At some point in our lives we are also all faced with that realization. Not necessarily because we have been told we are sick but because the things we hold dear are being taken away from us.

For some it’s what they do for a living. They become workaholics spending more time at the office moving up the ladder until they become the best in their field-that is until someone else that has more drive and determination comes along to threaten their position.

For others it’s the performance of their children. You see them on social media posting how their kids have achieved yet another accolade in school or in their extra curricular activities and they are the envy of all their friends and family. Until  one day when they see a post from another parent and their children have either matched or exceeded their kid’s accolades.

For other’s it is their position in the church. They are willing and available to help out whenever possible and that is commendable but then a new member comes in and they are also willing and available to help out but they have just a little more time because their obligations outside of church aren’t as demanding.

What do we do when we feel our sense of security is threatened? How we react when we are no longer big man or woman on campus speaks a lot to how we view the things we have been given and to how we view our relationship with Jesus. Our identity is not made up of our day-to-day jobs. Our identity is not made up of how well our children perform. Our identity is not made up of how much we do in church. Our identity is made up of who we are in Christ.

Don’t get me wrong there are going to be times when we question things going on in our lives or when we think that we don’t measure up however that shouldn’t shake the foundation of our identity. This is something I am constantly telling myself when I hear about other’s excelling in their dreams but thankfully I always have God to remind me that just as He chose Moses and Abraham for a specific time and duty He has chosen me for a specific time and duty.

As long as I keep my focus on God I will able to move forward in what He has for me all while celebrating other’s triumphs.

But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint. (Isaiah 40:31)

photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/35541543@N08/20587117934″>2015-09-06 mirror (26)d</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/”>(license)</a&gt;

This entry was posted on September 17, 2016. 1 Comment

It’s Not How You Start…

4616170743_417492b6c7_oI love watching cooking, decorating, home improvement and fashion competition shows. I like how a group of people all come together with the same nervous anticipation of what the first challenge will hold. Will it be extremely difficult? Will it be a group challenge or an individual challenge? I also like how at the beginning everyone is on the same even playing field. No one has more of an advantage or disadvantage than anyone else and at the beginning it’s anyone’s game.

It’s only after the first few challenges are over that we start to see who is leading the pack, who’s in the middle of the pack and who is at the bottom of the pack and the awesome thing is that those positions change during the course of the competition. Someone who was leading the pack the week before can end of being the one who is sent home the following week and who will ultimately win the entire competition. Every week at the start of a new challenge is the opportunity to either pass or fail and every week it’s not about how you start but how you finish.

That’s how it is with our working life. Most of us begin our working career at the age of 16 either working in fast food or some sort of retail establishment. We are extremely excited because it’s our first job. We will finally get paid by someone other than our parents for the work that we do and we start to feel a sense of independence. As we continue with our working career some of that excitement starts to wear off but our sense of independence is still there.  And as we draw closer to retirement we have two choices to make.

  1. Are we going to honor the commitment we made to our employer or are we going to start slacking off?
  2. Is our retirement going to be self focused or people focused?

Aside from the fact that the bible tells us to be honorable to the people we are working for and working with it tarnishes the good work we’ve done if we choose to think that our retirement is more important than being reliable. Also as with our profession our time away from full-time work should be garnered toward helping others. If we start to focus too much on ourselves we will lose our sense of purpose.

When we give more than we receive and we spend time considering others as opposed to thinking about how much we can benefit our lives become what God intended for them to be-filled with generosity, love and grace.

And then in the end people will remember our integrity and much more importantly how the love of Jesus flowed through our hearts.

photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/18090920@N07/4616170743″>finish line</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/”>(license)</a&gt;

This entry was posted on September 5, 2016. 2 Comments