Just how perfect do things have to be for you to feel happy? What is required for your motivation and inspiration? Are you waiting for a list of things to be bought, a list of things to come together, and a list of confirmations to get started?
What if we’re waiting on things we were never supposed to wait on? What if we’re tying our first steps to step 10, and our refusal to move until we see the big picture clearly has us stuck?
Do you actually think one day you’re going to wake up and just “feel motivated” and that will be the day you get started? Ahhhh, let me guess, you didn’t quite wake up today feeling it, now did you? Nope, because Honey, it doesn’t work that way! Motivation shows up when you’re 3/4 of the way through. The “want to” comes along way after you push your butt into going anyway.
I woke up this morning and totally didn’t feel like writing a new devotional. I didn’t feel like sitting down and working. I didn’t feel like tapping into creativity and doing this thing for episode #816. Seriously, 816 times in a row I’ve done this. I’m tired. I love y’all and I’m so absolutely honored to get to speak light and love into your life, but if I can be honest for a moment, I would have chosen to just NOT do it today.
Oh what, you thought I always felt like it, that I always had great ideas and happy words flowing? That it’s not “work” for me? You would be so wrong. But here’s what I’ve learned after 816 mornings of waking up early and writing for this podcast, if I delay in any way, if I allow my thoughts to get out of the corral and go unleashed, I will talk myself right out of what I know I should be doing. And darn it, YOU’RE THE SAME WAY.
You talk yourself out of doing the exact things you should be doing. God’s spirit lives and dwells within you. It guides you and gives you that gentle, unspoken nudge to get started, but when you don’t act on it, that unspoken nudge gets drown out by all your excuses why you can’t right now.
I have to wonder what God could do with a life like yours if you just stopped talking yourself out of doing the things his Spirit nudges you to do. Don’t you want to know what is possible in your life? Well there’s only one way to find out … drop the preciousness.
Yes, the preciousness. I’m talking about the list of things that have to be a certain way before you can take action. What’s on your list? What are you waiting for?
Ecclesiastes 11: 4-6
“Those who wait for perfect weather
will never plant seeds;
those who look at every cloud
will never harvest crops.
5 You don’t know where the wind will blow,
and you don’t know how a baby grows inside the mother.
In the same way, you don’t know what God is doing,
or how he created everything.
6 Plant early in the morning,
and work until evening,
because you don’t know if this or that will succeed.
They might both do well.”
Are you waiting for perfect weather to plant your seed? Waiting to know for sure what will work before doing any work? God’s word says you will never reap a harvest that way. Things will never change and you’ll never make progress with your list of circumstantial expectations.
Yesterday I talked about the story of One Republic, one of my favorite rock bands. In their documentary the lead singer said the secret to writing so many hit songs is to get unprecious about the process. He learned to write music whenever he could, wherever he was. On a tour bus, in a green room, in a quiet corner or in a crowded restaurant. He dropped the traditional list of circumstances tied to his creativity and just decided he could and would work anywhere. He got real unprecious about the whole thing.
Now THAT is a game changer.
Will you drop the list of circumstances you’ve tied to your action and decide you will make it work anywhere! Get unprecious about the process.
I remember back many years ago at the beginning of my health and fitness journey I was friends on Facebook with a mom of a little girl who was very ill. The little girl would spend months at a time in the hospital, and her mama never left her side. Right there in the hospital room, the mom decided she would do what she could to personally get healthy. She completely transformed her body by running in place, doing squats and push ups, and every single thing she could do with zero equipment, little space, and a cold sterile floor by her daughter’s hospital bed.
That woman changed her life when she dropped her preciousness.
NO MORE EXCUSES. YOU DON’T NEED ALL YOU THINK YOU NEED TO DO WHAT YOU NEED TO DO.
You are precious indeed. Precious to God Almighty who created you in his image and called you his masterpiece. But this whole preciousness you’ve tied to your ability to get started and move forward has just got to go girl!
What is required for your praise? Really, how good do things have to be in your life for you to wake up with praise on your lips? Are you waiting for your problem to pass, then you will praise? Well let me tell you a little secret … GOD INHABITS YOUR PRAISE. Your problem needs God in the middle of it, and the way to get him in the middle of it is to praise right here while the problem is still prominent and the answers are still unknown.
Acts 16 tells of Paul and Silas being terribly beaten and unjustly thrown into prison. That was a real problem. My guess would be they probably didn’t “FEEL” like singing. They didn’t feel like joyful music. But they dropped the list of circumstantial expectations and praised God. Then you know what happened … God showed up in the middle of their problem as a result of their praise.
Acts 16: 25-26 “About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose.”
Then you know what happened … the jailer and his entire family came to believe in God because of Paul & Silas praise in the middle of their problem.
Oh, this isn’t just about you and your circumstances. This is about your whole family and people you don’t even know yet. While you’ve been waiting for things to get better, God’s been lining up lives for you to positively impact when you decide to show up and do what you were created to do.
Our preciousness is our list of expectations of how things have to be before we can move forward. But God doesn’t work that way! He says you are indeed precious, but stop acting so darn precious. Praise him in the middle of this problem, then watch him work. Unleash your creativity in the middle of the chaos and see what good can be created. Decide happiness will be your chosen mood even when things are so far from perfect it’s ridiculous, then you’ll be amazed by all the reasons to be happy.
What is it you think you have to have before you get started?
A home gym? Ahhhh, remember the mom who transformed her own body in her daughter’s hospital room.
A full home office? Ahhhh, remember One Republic who writes and works from anywhere. And take it from this girl who doesn’t have a desk to work at, a studio to record in, or any fancy equipment, but has been chosen to host the world’s #1 daily devotional podcast … YOU DON’T NEED ALL YOU THINK YOU NEED.
Cut the strings and drop the expectations of what’s required. You’re giving all your power to circumstances. You’re putting too much importance in the “vibe” or the “feeling” when none of that is needed. What’s needed is your consistent action and your continual praise.
God is living inside of you. He doesn’t need circumstances to change to be powerful in your life. He needs you to stop giving power to circumstances and stop waiting to feel different, and start doing something different.