What Truly Matters Most to You

It may be easy to say what matters most to you. But it may not be as easy as it seems. That’s because there’s sometimes a significant gap between what you say is important and how you invest your time, resources, energy, passion, heart and hope. For instance, it’s easy to say your children are most important – but do you give up doing things you love in order to spend more time with them? Or it sounds noble to proclaim that there are lots of things far more important than your stuff – but have you actually simplified your life? Or it’s tempting to piously proclaim that God is your single greatest priority – but do you in point of fact place your absolute trust in God every single day? So what truly matters most to you? Just take a good honest look at how you live.

“All the Time”

You long for God when you feel like you’re all alone. Call out to God when you feel like you need help. And ask God to intervene when you feel like you can’t do anything more on your own. That’s good. In fact, it’s great. But it’s never enough. Because God isn’t just a ‘sometimes’ God. God is an ‘all the time’ God. Which means God wants you to long for a deeper relationship with God – all the time. Ask for help – all the time. And get involved in your life – all the time. But this isn’t going to happen just because it’s what God wants to happen. It’s going to happen when you decide you’re ready for it to happen. Not just once. Or when you think about it. Or especially when it’s convenient. But all the time. Because all the time really does mean all the time.

The Upside of Imperfection

 

It’s so easy to be overwhelmed by the long list of your weaknesses, things you don’t do well and failures. That’s why it’s tempting to pretend they don’t exist, try to overcompensate or work to ‘spin’ them into respectability so you won’t have to admit ‘reality’ to yourself, others or God. No wonder you’re exhausted, depleted and sometimes depressed! But what you despise, God sees as a wonderful opportunity to remind you just how much you need God, enable you to perceive God doing things you otherwise might not have the opportunity to see and help you to understand that it’s not about how good, accomplished or how impressive you are – it’s about how much you trust God. So do something completely counter-intuitive today: embrace your humanity as the divine gift of imperfection that miraculously opens you to the gift of God’s grace.

Choose God’s Love Instead of Your Fear

The fact of the matter is that there is much to fear in life: North Korea possibly armed with nuclear weapons, the spike in terrorism, your children’s safety in school, the reality that you’ll probably be diagnosed with some form of cancer at some time in your life and the way so many bedrock institutions – churches, schools and governments – are incapable of leading in a world that seems to have far more problems than hope. But just because you have a great deal to fear in life doesn’t mean you have to live in fear. That’s because fear is a state of mind. It’s not reality. God’s absolute love is reality. And God not only wants you to experience it, God wants you to dwell in it every hour of every day. So choose God’s love instead of your fear. And do it right now. Because you can.  

Just Share Some Grace

Right and wrong matter. And, sometimes, you have to stand up for right and oppose wrong. But too often people start crusading in favor of ‘right’ and against ‘wrong’ for reasons that have nothing to do with right or wrong. It’s far more about their own pain, insecurities and fear than the issue they are addressing. How can you tell? It’s often their high level of emotion, the way they demonize those who oppose them and their own self-righteousness. And that’s when you need to take a stand. But make sure you’re listening to God and not assuming you’re speaking for God. Make sure you’re dealing with the issue and not just your own issues. Make sure it’s about behavior and not the person. And, when you’re in doubt about any of this, just share some grace. Because a good dose of grace always makes everything clearer.