The words interrupted my quick scanning, and persuaded me to slow my reading, take it in again, read it aloud to my husband, and dwell on it long enough as to stitch it into my memory. I am helping a friend who happens to be a writer with her website, and it was a quote she had shared that stopped me.
It was a sentiment that my soul knew well. I feel it as I write these words, a struggle against the difficulty. Writing is not easy, but to have written is life-giving.
I think we all know this, in one sense or another.
I felt it a few days ago as I ran alongside of a glassy-river pocketed with thin ice caps. It was more miles than I had run in a long while. My legs stiffened, willing me to stop. My mind fought against the physical resistance, and when I climbed that final hill and glanced down at my tracker to see my distance, it was life-giving.
I remember it during that labor, the one that would last longer then an entire rotation of the earth on its axis, the pain and the wait and the fear; and then, the life-giving sound of my son’s first cry.
I see it on that Calvary hill, sun setting and blood spilling, as my Jesus hung on that tree heaving last breaths. The pain was anguishing, His heart was splitting. And yet, as He whispered, “It is finished”, it was life-giving.
Often what we desire most in life is not easy to come by. Goals demand perseverance, success requires hard work, a life well lived is built of intentional choices and sweat. Temptation to throw in the towel, to give in, and to give up lurks around every corner. The opposition looms large.
What kind of resistance are you facing today? Is it that first step? The tying on of your gym shoes? The picking up of the pen or paint brush? The silencing of those inner doubts? The phone call to that potential new client? The next piece of paperwork in the adoption journey? That letter of apology?
The most daunting resistance that you are facing right now—it might just be your biggest opportunity to move forward today. It might be your next greatest step.
For me, it was sitting down to write these words.
It was the “just showing up” to what I know God has called me to.
What is He calling you to, and what is your next move in that direction?
Today, just show up. Hands open, feet ready, ears listening, knees on the ground, heart willing and unafraid.
Stop looking at that next move as a task to get done or a burden, and begin seeing it as an opportunity to practice obedience, remembering that, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters,” (Coloassians 3:23)
The showing up, the walking, the doing—this is the hard stuff. But the path of least resistance is not the one that will lead you to what you want most in life. Rather, perhaps it is time to chase the resistance, to chase the hard, to chase the scary—when you know that what is waiting at the end of the path is Life-Giving.
Whatever you do today, don’t settle because of fear or doubt. Don’t “eat the bread of idleness”. Instead, know that “The Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.” (2 Timothy 1:7) and that, “His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence,” (2 Peter1:3)
That thing He is calling you to? He has given you absolutely everything you need for the task—because he has given you Himself. He calls us to greater things than we can see, and sometimes the path to those things is not easy. But the way of the cross was not easy, either.
Pursue what is lovely today, what is pure, what is good, what is His. Chase what you want most in life; chase the life-giving. Chase after His great plan.
Begin by answering this simple question: How will you show up today?
Friends, if you are looking for a great tool to help you dig into Scripture, consider Biblegateway.com. I have found their passage lookup (and tools for finding similar passages), as well as their keyword search tool very helpful for my own Bible study.