When I was 14, my parents brought a little girl into our lives who was a month shy of her fifth birthday. She had a difficult life prior to that, and my parents wound up adopting her. Although my father left our family a year-and-a-half later, she found stability in my mother and me and has grown up to be a remarkable woman. She now lives in the same house, the one I grew up in, with her husband. She has two grown children and three grandchildren that live nearby. Life is very simple and satisfying to her. She has everything she wants.
I, on the other hand, left that nest when I was 20 years old. My childhood started out normal (so I thought) but after my parent’s divorce when I was 16, I became restless and discontented. I knew I wouldn’t stay in the small town where I grew up. There had to be something else out there that would satisfy my longing for “more”.
This scenario reminds me of the state of the church. By no means am I implying my sister’s spiritual journey or my own, but I’m simply giving an analogy of how Christians often appear to me when it comes to fulfilling God's plan for them.
A majority of church goers believe church involvement is God's plan for them. But they often get to the point where church ministry becomes a chore (unless it's truly part of God's plan), and they long for the passion that God uses to lead us to our destiny. Most don't know how to begin to pursue God's desire for their lives. Besides, it's frightening to step out of your comfort zone, and so they settle for the status quo. Many leave the church at this point to stay at home with TV evangelists who demand nothing of their time. Their relationship with God is threatened as they are no longer seeking His will for their life.
And then there is the restless soul like me. Always seeking, always questioning. I believe that my dissatisfaction is part of my journey to the destiny God intends for me. I feel like Paul when he says in Philippians 3:14, “I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”
I am very competitive – with myself. I want that prize. I won’t quit and will keep on pressing.
I say all this because I have observed, over the years, how very few Christians are truly walking in the plan God intended for them. Oh yes, we can do our part here and there, believing we are doing all we need to, but the world often has a greater pull on our flesh and gets in the way of that plan.
John Bevere shared a quote that says, “You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. We were born to make manifest the glory of God within us.” – M.W.
John Bever also believes that we will not be judged by the number of souls we lead to Christ but by how well we fulfill the plan that God has for us.
I know I will never be satisfied on this Earth until I reach that goal that God has set for me, until I manifest that glory of God within me. I believe that this mindset should also apply to our marriage relationships. We can settle for the status quo in our marriage, or we can seek the plan God desires for marriage. His is the perfect way, the promise of joy in a relationship.
I sincerely strive to seek His plan for my marriage. You would think that after 20 years of marriage ministry, Rick and I would have a perfect relationship. We know all the answers (or so we think). Unfortunately, it’s not that simple. Like God's word, you can't just know it, you must also apply it. My marriage is still a work in progress. Oh yes, Rick and I have grown in leaps and bounds and have an amazing relationship. I’m sure there is more for us to learn, though, and to change. (That’s the hard part.)
Nevertheless, I plan to keep running the race to reach the goal God intends for my life and for my marriage. Won’t you join me?