I went on a field trip with my daughter to the art museum. As I looked around at all this amazing art work, I thought about how I could never paint like that, or make a sculpture like that, etc.
As I looked at these paintings I also thought about the time and energy it took to make these pieces of art. As a society we have gotten to this point of only seeing the finished piece of art work without really ever thinking about the time and the energy it took to create such a beautiful piece of art.
We read a book, look at a picture, or shop for beautiful things to fill our homes with and we think about how we want those things, and yet we stop at the wanting because the GETTING is just so much work.
Be extraordinary – it’s something we all hear every single day of our life.
Do something GREAT with your life.
Make a difference.
Be a world changer.
I think these are all great things. But that’s the thing, we are so focused on the GREATNESS. When these statements are made it almost triggers a sense of shame for the things we are already doing, and the person we are already.
“Be special.” Often we think “Well if I have to BE special then that means I’m not already special.” So often we take this phrase and think about ways that we can be special. But maybe being special isn’t so much work after all, maybe it’s just being yourself. I guess being yourself IS work, because it’s scary.
“Do something great with your life.” I guess when someone says this to us we just think well I guess I am not doing anything great with my life. Every person I talk to knows that God has called them to a life of holiness. They are constantly pursuing “God’s will” as if they aren’t already living it.
I think living a purpose driven life is great, at least we aren’t living in despair and in a life where we feel like everything means nothing. But that’s the thing, this purpose driven life, and all this GREATNESS has led us to a point where we feel like where we are at right now is just not as “important” as whatever GREAT thing God has for our life.
“Make a difference.” One thing I have learned is that everyone leaves a mark on this world. You can make a difference in someone’s life, but it’s not always good. We can make a difference every place that we go. Too often we feel we need to build these huge organizations in order to do so. But you really don’t. We don’t need to build another system in order to make a difference.
We just need to be aware as to what KIND of difference we are making in our daily lives. Is it a good difference, or a bad difference?
“Be a world changer.” Hitler changed the world. There are plenty of leaders in this world who are changing the world. I guess when people say these things they mean change the world for the good. But I am also under the impression that they are saying these things with the intent that if you are at home sitting on your bum then you really aren’t actively changing the world.
The thing with these phrases is that they usually come with an agenda. Whoever is saying this to you wants you to know that God loves you and you ARE special. But the delusion that our purpose defines our worth is also attached to these phrases.
For so long I thought God’s will for my life was something outside of what I was living in that moment.
So many of us like to wear our accomplishments as a badge of honor.
It’s hard to reconcile a loss of a loved one at any stage in life because often we are waiting for them to accomplish all that we felt they were capable of accomplishing.
For a really long time I was troubled by the fact that my grandpa still had poems and books to write when he passed away. When he died, the stories died with him.
I honestly feel it is delusional to sit and think that the more we do then God loves us more, and our reward will be great. I mean if this is true, then too bad for the person who was born with a handicap…I can guarantee you the greatest in the God’s kingdom you probably don’t even KNOW!
The greatest in God’s Kingdom is NOT the person with a name, platform, and money in the bank.
The greatest people in God’s Kingdom are the ones who live out their faith with a sense of humility some of us are afraid to embrace because we want to be “world changers.”
Through Jesus we have been shown what the finished masterpiece looks like. When we look to Jesus we can SEE who we are meant to be. But so often we think that means we are to just to automatically be there. We want to be like Jesus but sometimes the getting there is just too much.
Sometimes being a Christian is like looking at that finished piece of art work in the art museum. You would love to be so talented to be able to create something so marvelous and significant.
But you see, the artists of this world know this one little secret that most people aren’t willing to tell you, and that is there is a process to creating art.
Most of the time the best pieces of art are a result of a mistake, and it took trial and error to get that finished masterpiece you are looking at.
Most people aren’t willing to tell you there is actually a process to being special, making a difference, being a world changer, and doing something GREAT with your life.
Most people aren’t willing to tell you that the process starts with who you are right now, and what you are doing with your life right now.
Most of us have no idea what we want to do with our life. Some of us actually think we should be perfect at whatever it is that we do .
But we can find freedom in knowing that changing the world isn’t something that may never happen, it is something that is happening in our lives right now.
There is no shame in being ordinary, and when we live our ordinary lives with a heart bent towards Jesus, then we realize that we can change the world wherever we go.
We have been shown the final piece of artwork, the finished product. Most people will share these truths with us, but the discouragement comes when they forget to tell us it’s a process that simply begins with us using what God has already given us in order to glorify Him.
That artist who created those amazing works of art used ordinary tools and painted ordinary things. But he used what was given to him: his talents, paint brushes, paints, a canvas.
Through trial and error, and a whole lot of mistakes, he found a way to create a beautiful painting.
No matter what Christmas was for us in the past, it seems like every year it has the opportunity, and the possibility, to be something completely different and brand new. That’s what Jesus brought with Him as He was born into this world; He brought with Him a clean slate, a fresh start, and something brand new to our lives and to our faith.
Today I invite you to come and take this imperfect advent journey with me to discover the beauty of the good and perfect gifts God has given us through His Son Jesus. Let us journey together to discover what those gifts are, how we can receive those gifts, and most importantly the importance of being a good steward of those gifts.