Ever notice Christians have a checklist along their progression of time: get saved, serve some people, join a Bible study, volunteer with a ministry, go on a mission trip, maybe go to Bible college, get married, join the young married couples small group, have babies, volunteer in the nursery, have more babies, join M.O.P.s, teach Sunday school, lead a Bible study, go to women’s retreat, join a prayer group, and. And. And.
Sometimes being a Christian woman is just all too predictable. I saw myself plotting points on an imaginary plane, and I was bored out of my mind. Is this mediocrity what God set before me? Is this what he meant when he said he planned for me, “life to the fullest”? It all seemed so meh.
When I read through stories in the Old Testament, I was struck by these testimonies that would even bring a wide-glazed-eye to people in Hollywood. You know the one I mean? Shock and awe. Don’t get me wrong; I don’t plan to add drama and sin to my life for the sake of excitement. What I want is a story that leaves a wake and points to Jesus. But I was going about it all wrong.
I realized I made everything cookie cutter. That life was NOT what God asked of me. I was putting one foot in front of the other in an order that seemed to make logical sense. Sure, God wants me to be in a Bible study. I’ll sign up to bring treats, and I will write my leader an encouraging note. These are totally noble activities. Right? Wait. I know! I’ll go on a mission trip and serve people even if I am uncomfortable. Clearly God wants me jumping out there and sharing his love. I don’t even need to ASK if this is God’s will; he said love, so I am going to love the people in this world. My children and my husband will just have to figure out how to live without me while I go serve God. Or, maybe I am missing the point of all of this. Maybe what I see as Busy Acts of Nobility (B.A.N?) are not what God wants for me.
We are not called to be noble. We are called to love others as much as we love ourselves. Bible studies, mission trips, M.O.P.s groups, small groups, a Christ loving spouse, women’s retreat and. And. And.
Even if these end up being God’s will for you, these were never meant to be the focus. Each of these experiences was intended to get us within reach.
If our gaze is down or even centered at our own flawed eyelevel, that means we have taken our eyes from his; we are no longer standing resolute on who Christ is and his true calling on our life. Talk about missing opportunities.
I lose track of who needs love most when I change my focus to the noble acts. I have trouble discerning which words to tuck away and which ones to shout from the rooftops. I lack discernment, and I find myself running in circles hoping to hear from God.
What does a girl need to do to be within God’s reach? How about prayer?
How about accountability from godly men and women?
What if I started reading my Bible so regularly it hurt when I missed a morning?
What if I got on my knees, turned off all of my electronic devices, and sought the face of Jesus with my hands stretched high just hoping to brush the hem of his garment? What if my very life depended upon that touch?
Oh that I could even grasp how much I need all of those things in my life. Then. THEN I would feel what it’s like to be within his reach.
God isn’t looking for well spoken, politically correct leaders. He is looking for someone willing to stand. Stand on his promises. Stand for others. Stand for his glory. Stand within His reach.
Where are you? Are you within his reach? It’s not too late. It’s never too late.