Accepting or settling?
When I started thinking about writing this blog post, it made me wince. Ambition is something I have struggled with since a young age – I’ve always wanted more from life, and from myself. I’ve come a long way but it’s still something that I have to work on daily.
I believe that God wants great things for our lives. The Bible puts it this way,
“Now all glory to God, who is able, through His mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think,” Ephesians 3:20 (New Living Translation).
I truly believe that He wants us to thrive, have beautiful families, great careers and be financially stable.
But what happens when we feel as if the path we are on is not enough? What happens when we aren’t satisfied at work? Or with ourselves? What happens when we find ourselves wanting MORE?
God first, always.
As I mentioned, I do believe God wants great things for us – and He does want us to desire a fruitful and fulfilling life. But above all of that, He wants us to desire HIM first. James 4:14 reads that, “your life is like a morning fog – it’s here a little while and then it’s gone”. All earthly things, like money, fame and success, will one day fade into nothing but God is eternal and everlasting. By putting Him first, which is a daily choice, we are reminded of what is of true value – not things that will fade, but all things eternal – like Jesus, the Church and our own souls. No car or job will ever give us eternal life, or allow us to have peace no matter what trials we are facing.
#TheHappyNow is a hashtag that’s popular on Instagram. It’s one of the few that I really like the message of as it’s about focusing on the joys of the moment. In the world we live in, it’s easy to get caught up in dreaming about the future. While there is nothing wrong with planning for our future, it becomes dangerous when we think of the future more than we focus on the present. It starts to rob us of joy, and we find ourselves becoming discontent with where we are right now. My fiancé and I are getting married early next year and I’m so excited to go to Europe for our honeymoon, but if that’s all I focus on, then I will miss out on the excitement of planning a wedding and all the memories that come along with that.
The Serenity Prayer
We’ve probably all seen it somewhere. That small, framed prayer that you’ve seen on the back of bathroom doors and hanging in the kitchen of your aunt’s house.
“God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference” – Reinhold Niebuhr.
It’s a little cheesy, and old-school but nonetheless, it remains true. There are some things in life that we won’t be able to change. I’m short, I have always been short and I will always be short. During my high-school years, I used to look at my friends with their long legs and flat tummies and feel frustrated. Now, I’ve made peace with my height and it’s become one of the things that I love about myself. It might seem like a silly example – but we all have that one thing about ourselves or our lives that we wish we could change. God made you, you for a reason. In learning to love yourself and to be content with the unchangeable, you will start to discover more about His character and more about yourself!
Living your best life
I believe that if you put a relationship with Jesus first, you focus on the present, and you make peace with what you cannot change – you will begin a journey towards contentment and fullness of joy. This will also allow you the clarity to see where God wants you to grow, and the areas that He wants to stretch you in. God’s plan for our lives will truly be so much more satisfying, sweet and blissful than our own plan could ever be. By embracing Him, we can embrace all the goodness that He has in store for us. We just need to take the leap, to commit our lives into His hands and watch our journey unfold.
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