Philippians 3: 13-14 No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.
Here we are, the holidays have passed, we have celebrated, perhaps we overate and over indulged and we find ourselves in a brand spanking new year. Isn’t it funny how no matter how stressed or relaxed you were, it really did all come to pass. Here we are on January 1st and you likely have a few commitments that are beginning.
This can be a tricky time. It’s an exciting time because you’re still full of hope for the new year, and yet this is a reality check as well because it’s time to start DOING. No more thinking, no more planning, no more big talk, it’s time for you to show up and do what you said you were going to do this year. And depending on how strong your will power muscle is, that may seem to be a daunting task. I’m here to remind you today that just as the past 90 days went by whether we were stressed or relaxed, so will the next 90 days go by whether you are faithful with your commitments or you fail. The time will pass. How will you be feeling 90 days from today? Will you make yourself proud as this time passes? Can you count on yourself to actually do it this time? I promise you it’s worth it.
Today we begin the journey of 2019. A journey from where we are to where we want to go. One of my favorite lessons in the bible is of a similar journey. The journey of the Israelites going from where they were, to where they wanted to go. The book of Exodus tells us about this group being led out of captivity in Egypt by Moses. Miracle after miracle saved them and brought them out to start their journey. Where were they going? The Promised Land. A land said to be flowing with milk and honey. A land where their families could be free and live happily.
Understand this, God’s plan was for them to live in freedom. God created this promised land for them. God showed up and did his part. Now it was up to the Israelites to take the journey there. Their journey was through a desert.
Isn’t’ that the way journeys often are? Right through a desert? Right through the tough stuff. Oh that’s likely what your journey is going to look like too. You’ve set some goals for this year and in order to get there and live the life you want to live as the woman you most want to be, you will need to go through some “stuff”. There will be tough days. There will be days you simply don’t wanna. And here’s what’s crazy … today may be one of those days. Yes, this is your desert and there’s only one way to get through it, keep moving forward towards your goal.
But the Israelites got stuck in the desert, literally. For 40 years they walked in circles looking for their Promised Land. Generations died in that desert. All while they were so close to the exact thing they were searching for. Understand this – their journey should have only taken 11 days. ELEVEN DAYS. Eleven days of moving forward with purpose and determination, doing everything they could with what they had. But instead it took them 40 years.
Come on 11 days. I know what you’re thinking. Couldn’t they just suck it up and make it happen for 11 days? Ahhhh, it’s so easy for us to say, but how hard is it for us to stick with our commitments for 11 days? The truth is many will have already given up on their goals for 2019 in these first 11 days. We’re not so different from the Israelites.
So let’s look at their journey to understand it and apply it to our own journey this year. Why were they stuck? Scripture says THEY WERE COMPLAINING. They were belly aching and moping over how hard the journey was. They were focused on all they didn’t have and all they couldn’t do. So, they were chained to where they were instead of walking freely into what was available to them, intended for them, and even promised to them. They had been slaves in Egypt, they had been rescued and set free to go to the Promised Land, yet they were still living as prisoners because of their own actions and thoughts.
What is holding you back from your Promised Land? Why can’t you get to where you want to be in life? What chains have kept you stuck? Chains of complaining? Chains of laziness? How about chains of snacking, chains of sugar or soda, the chain of that snooze button, waste, or ungratefulness. Chains of over spending, over sleeping, over eating, under estimating and under achieving?
Don’t you see the life you were created for is so much bigger than that? Don’t you see it’s all within reach if you will just break those chains and live UNLEASHED?
Live beyond your excuses. Live beyond your limiting thoughts. Change the way you think. Change your habits. Rise up and start living up to your potential. This is the year for you to be unleashed.
God has something available to you this year and you’re on a journey to discover it. Won’t you go for it? Won’t you show up with your best effort and decide now you’re not going to delay? You’re not going to make this harder than it needs to be. You’re going all-in, no looking back, striving for what God has for you in 2019.