If I don’t already have an excuse, all I have to do is wait around for a moment and one will come along. It may be a fad or it may be a reasonable excuse.
The Russians made me do it! Jayden hacked my system! Lord, it was the woman YOU gave me! Look what you made me do!
It will still be a lie.
Circumstances and situations happen but it is my choice as to how I respond, react, or adjust to deal with those circumstances.
Making the better choices happens when I know why I am here, I know where I fit into God’s purpose, and I know how I am best equipped to walk it out.
The why of my being fits into two simple ideas: Love God and love others.
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind . . . and Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments” (Matthew 22:37-40).
The idea is simple. The execution gets a little messy. My nature being what it is wants to focus on me. What will I get out of it? I have to keep investing in Love until I understand that I get EVERYTHING when Love leads the way – and that without Love I have nothing.
My where in God’s Purpose requires a relationship: Know God to know self.
“Do not conform to the patter of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – His good, pleasing, and perfect will” (Romans 12:2)
When I first started dating my now husband, I spent most of my spare time talking with him – either on the phone or in person. I wrote him letters. I invested in him and I invested in time for us. I could be sitting in a crowded room and know when he walked in because I could recognize his voice even over the crowds.
If I want to know God’s will then I have to be able to hear Him speak to me. I will only recognize His voice if I have invested in a relationship with Him.
My how comes from my unique design: Know the seed God planted at the beginning of time.
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart” (Jeremiah 1:5).
I am not like anyone else – I’m not even like other Christians. I was crafted and woven, even before time began, to be uniquely me. The world tries constantly to push me in its box. They demand I do it the way they say is right. THEY are wrong.
In 2011, our home was in the path of one of many tornadoes to swipe through Alabama. We were displaced for over six months as repairs were completed. The month after the tornadoes, I attended a conference in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. The city had taken a direct hit. Devastation doesn’t even begin to describe it. I began to feel bad about feeling bad. We had just lost some possessions and had some damage. Others lost everything, including loved ones.
Samaritan’s Purse had set up headquarters in the church where I was attending the conference. One of the counselors and I had a chance to talk and I told her about my struggle.
You can’t compare your journey with that of someone else. Your pain is real because it is your pain.
This same idea holds true no matter the issue at hand. My how is not about what they have determined, but about God has designed me.
I can make excuses or I can make a difference. My choice is my own and is not determined by anything other than knowing why I am here, where I fit into it all, and how I am uniquely designed to walk it out.
AICR Photography by Andrew Loke