How Can We Live Out A Forward-Paced Faith
Are you feeling stressed and stretched in a season that is busy? Learn how you can live out a forward-paced faith during a season that is fast-paced.
“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works,
which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.”
Ephesians 2:10 NKJV
Maybe it’s just me. But these days? These days are tricky.
And a little slippery.
And sometimes (more like a lot of times)…sloppy.
I am currently in a season where I am juggling a variety of tasks, wearing multiple hats, and well…let’s call it being stretched….mentally and emotionally.
And all of this keeping up with the forced forward march of the daily grind, coupled with the hat-swapping roles of wife, Mom, and businesswoman and the brain-bending of new beginnings…
It makes for days and emotions that can wind up looking and feeling a little…messy.
If I’m being totally honest? It’s leaving me a little blurry. A little stressed. A little self-doubting and second-guessing. And a lot exhausted.
Maybe you can relate?
One morning, I was in a deep wrestling match with time management. Considering and weighing the tasks against the time and structure of the day, stuck and not knowing which to-do list line item to focus on first, as there were so many…I was convicted with this question:
What is my greatest contribution to others?
As I chased down the answer in my mind…I paused and finally landed on my willingness to follow the call on my heart, to write.
And not just to write..but my willingness to write vulnerably and authentically.
Almost immediately, another silent, follow-up question popped into my mind:
What is my greatest contribution to my family?
That answer came easily.
Unconditional love for them and of course the many hugs and snuggles I love to dish out.
In short, showing up for them.
Interestingly enough, vacuuming was not the answer to either of the two silent and convicting questions! Praise God!
That right there…I needed that laugh! Let the dust bunnies party!
Because? Because I tend to take life a little too seriously.
Maybe you too?
Oh, friend, come sit with me, you are in good company. I think…actually, I know, God never intended us to be so stiff. So wound up. So stressed.
He invites us
Instead, God invites us and wants us to come to Him so that He can help us with all that is weighing us down.
“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30 KJV
And yet, God is patient. He is not pushy.
In His lovingkindness, He waits on us to make the first move.
There, in the audience of our life, He patiently waits for us to look up from the list and the laboring, to lock eyes with Him and acknowledge our need for Him.
Yes, He waits for us to lift up the rope of the self-made wrestling ring we are standing inside of.…and invite Him into the fighting match we have created, of what feels like – US vs. Everything Else…
only not to fight…but to fall on our knees.
Forward is a pace
Several years ago, I was listening to The Today Show, while getting ready in the morning and I overheard a group of runners being interviewed, who shared their running group mantra.
Their running mantra was this: Forward is a pace.
Oh, how I needed to hear that refreshing encouragement, while in the blurry throws of diaper duty and sleepless nights with a load of laundry waiting.
This idea that simply moving forward, one baby step at a time, however slow or sloppy it may look, continues to provide a soothing sense of calm, to a mind that tends to race ahead.
Yes, forward is a pace…continues to be an encouragement in this season.
This season of discerning what it looks like practically, on the daily, to contribute well and with the wisdom within the current roles assigned to me.
Friend, I don’t know how this might be speaking personally to you today. But, here’s what I’ve learned.
Inviting God into my daily agenda, bringing my overwhelmed heart, weighed down with a long list of to-do’s, and submitting it all to Him?
It changes the pace of the day.
True, the list doesn’t change…but how I approach and move through the list does.
Allow me to explain.
I’m not referring to my morning quiet time daily surrender.
Continuous, daily surrender
I am talking about a continuous, ongoing conversation of surrender happening as I move throughout the day.
The shift comes when I chose to repeatedly bring forth my lack, lay it down and ask God for His grace, wisdom, and strength to guide and equip me for each project and task, before I attempt to tackle it.
I am submitting to His lead and His pace.
Sharing my honest heart with God, admitting that I am depending on Him entirely to show me the way, makes it possible for me to release my own agenda and the pressures it’s packing and pressing on me.
Move ahead more freely, with a posture of confidence in a forward-paced faith…even if it means, walking into unknown territory.
Because it’s in the transferring of my trust in my own competence and receiving the exchange for confidence in Christ and His perfect direction of how I am assigned and called that allows me to show up and contribute well to the day ahead.
Because, while I tend to struggle in recognizing what the high-value targets of the day are and in what order the long list of tasks I need to tackle should be accomplished in?
God knows exactly what the next right thing is.
Not only that?
He longs to come beside us and help us figure it all out.
Down to every small detail.
He wants to be a part of the process…part of the pace.
And while I may not think I have a minute to waste, because of all the things waiting for me and a ticking clock?
What I keep learning over and over again, is that spending time in surrender is never wasted time.
Choosing to mindfully meet with God, there in the moment to moment, tucked inside the ring of round and round we go…is not a moment of missed opportunity to get something done.
Choosing to seek God out and His perfect will, both there in the split-minute decisions and also deep inside the habit of overthinking and second-guessing –
There in the seeking and surrendering allows for a moment.
A moment for clarity to be called on, created, and cast.
Where the opportunity for direction, lights and gently guides the way into living out the next steps of a forward-paced life, walked out in faith.
There it is.
The moment-by-moment surrender, giving way to a perfect and limitless God, whose Holy Spirit intercedes, works, and moves on our behalf, and the next step in the forward is a paced walk of life is found…in faith.
Friend, I want you to know I am not writing from a place of claiming I get this right all the time.
I write from a place of someone crawling back towards the Light, time and time again…after she has exhausted herself in the self-created, invisible wrestling ring of ME vs. Everything Else.
It’s within this walk of forward-paced faith, through the ongoing surrender of all the things, that we receive the gift of grace to live a life marked by love because of the One who is love.
In Your Life
Remember friend…it’s not a perfect walk.
You don’t have to walk perfectly, to walk well.
Jesus was and is the only One who will ever walk this Earth perfectly.
In fact, Jesus came and died so that we can be saved and also so that we can have access to His wisdom, guidance, and grace for doing the things of today.
He doesn’t ask us to walk perfectly.
He invites us to walk with Him, who is already perfect, in forward-paced faith together.
In His Word
“Now He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who also has given us the Spirit as a guarantee. So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord. For we walk by faith, not by sight.”
2 Corinthians 5-7 NKJV
For more encouragement, you are invited to read more posts from Heather.
If you are feeling overwhelmed and overworked, you may enjoy, “What If You Were Meant To Just Rest Today.”
You may enjoy this post about a fresh mindset for Fall from Heather, “What You Need To Know About Going Softly Into Fall & What You are Doing Is No Small Thing“
Visit Heather’s blog, to receive both tender encouragement for your heart and cozy inspiration for your home. Heather is a lifestyle blogger and an interior stylist. You can catch up with her on Instagram, Facebook, or Pinterest for inspiration to empower you on your walk with God and inspire you with budget-friendly ways to love your home.