As I awoke this morning, I felt an overwhelming urge to pray for clarity. Perhaps it was the ridiculous number of things pouring around in my head. Maybe it was the discussion I had with my wife the night before about whether or not I was doing to much and doing none of it really all that well. I know it was partly provoked by an email from a friend and co-worker two days prior asking some very important questions.
- Do you have too much on your plate? (or too little)
- Do you have enough time to get done what you’d like to get done?
- What things would you like to learn/take over?
- What things may need to get taken off your plate?
These are all great questions, and for me, they are questions that I need to pay really close attention to. At the moment, I can’t precisely answer any of them but the second; and for that one, the answer is “no”. If I’m honest with my self, I have too much on my plate today.
Unfortunately, I’ve allowed myself to schedule my days full of things that I feel that I need to do instead of protecting time for the things that I would like to get done. But I filled it with good things. Things that would move the kingdom forward. Maybe thats not the right measurement though. Shaun King recently wrote the following in his comments section on one of his posts. He was reflecting on balance and what 3 criteria he uses to decide what makes it on his plate.
Make sure everything you do lines up with one of these 3 things…
1. Are you honoring scripture?
2. Does it play to your strengths?
3. Will it make the world a better place?
When I have a yes on these 3 things, with few exceptions, I mash on the gas and go for it.
We all need to pay the bills. No question about it. But a little over 5 years ago, I walked away from a job that was paying the bills exceptionally to flip things upside down and buy an RV, empty a house, and find clarity. On the road for 2 years and in only 292 square feet, not only did I find clarity, but simplicity, purpose, and passion. I fear that I am slowly losing all of those for the sake of maintaining a status quo.
Bethany’s life has reconfirmed a fact that we all know but do a really good job denying or surpressing – that time is limited and beyond our control. Today, as certain as tomorrow may seem, could be a curtain call for any of us. I fear that I may hold for tomorrow what God is asking me to do today, and then find that tomorrow never comes.
I am fortunate, in an economy where many are looking for work, to be in a position where not only do I feel that perhaps I have more than I can or should handle, but that the work I have for the most part pays me very well. I fear that by stepping out and doing what I really DESIRE to do, I may not be able to provide for my family the way I would like to.
These are just a few of my fears, and the list goes on. They are not uncommon. I know that. But I also know that by voicing them and putting them in the open, they run less powerful as a means of holding me back. I can’t be ashamed about what is already public. (We covered that back on Failing Publicly!)
So today I will pray for clarity. Its one thing to have an idea that loosely bangs around in your head. Its another to have something about which you are so passionate that not doing it keeps you up at night. I have that feeling right now, but I believe I’ve been suppressing it for too long, and it may be time to let the dream come to life, even if it means reaching out into the overhanging, scary, ridiculously difficult places nobody else wants to go. with the mountain climbing analogy of yesterday’s post still hanging in my mind, I know that the opposition to my fears lies in my trust in Him. He’s had me in the past, and He’s there for me today.
Now comes the hard part. Being confident enough to actually release my current position and move to a new one… Easy to write about, but oh so hard to do.
Lord, help us all to find clarity today in whatever we do. Help us to direct our passions towards the things that will make the world a better place, and eternity a full house. Give us a vision of what could be and a discontent with what is. Your word says that it was for lack of vision that people would parish. Opportunities surround us, but a clear vision of which opportunity should be pursued is our request. We thank you that in all our decisions, you stand at the ready should we fall flat on our face, and that you are always willing to brush us off and point us in a new direction once again. In our hurried society, help us to be humble enough to realize that we’ve even fallen in the first place. In Jesus name we pray, AMEN.