Mediocrity

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We aren’t called to mediocrity. Christians are called to always be growing and learning and changing. Today my church celebrated 8 years since the church started. Our guest preacher complimented us on how much this church has helped the community and developed disciples since our inception. However, he also cautioned us. Don’t sit back and rest on these accomplishments. Don’t rest on past success. Keep on dreaming. Accomplish more. See what else God has for us. Don’t settle for mediocrity.

I thought about this in my own life. I am doing well at work. My kids are awesome – well they are teenagers so not perfect but still awesome. I am learning and growing as a follower of Christ. I just started a new life group with some amazing women. Life is going well. I can sit in this for a bit and relax. It’s going well. However, God wants me to keep on dreaming and see what’s next.

God isn’t about never resting. God invented the Sabbath. This is the one day we are to rest, connect with God, and restore ourselves for the coming week. Sabbath isn’t 7 days. It’s one day. 6 days are filled with work. You may be in a season of rest. Enjoy it but don’t settle there. The pastor had us say that out loud – Don’t Settle Here!

Press on. See what’s ahead. Try something new. Try something small. Embrace tomorrow. Pray for direction and new vision. Never stop dreaming. Never stop walking further into the fullness of Christ. Become more like Him. You aren’t even close. I’m not even close. Yet, we press on.

Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

~ Phillipians 3:13-14 NIV

Dream Big! Pray Big!

The Fog Hug

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I wasn’t going to blog this week since it’s Wednesday and I hadn’t done it yet. However, I find myself with a few minutes and an idea. Thanks for your patience this week.

I was driving to work today. The sunrise made the sky a soft pinkish color. There were a lot of puffy clouds and fog. The fog tinted the pink to make it more purplish. Purple is my favorite color. I reached for my phone (yes I was driving) then stopped myself. 1. The phone would never capture the colors and nuances I was seeing. 2. This was for me to soak in.

I felt a huge hug from God in that fog. It was tinted purple and it enveloped me. The sky had a surreal feel to it as I stared at it through my windshield. God wrapped my car in this fog. I felt a legit hug. I smiled and even laughed a bit. The joy bubbled up and overwhelmed me. It couldn’t be caught on film or even fully described in a blog. God and I had a moment. I savored it. I smile thinking about it. I am ready for my day because of it.

Have you experienced Him yet today? If not, look for Him. He’s all around you. The daily verse on your calendar is for you. The hummingbird who lands on the flower next to you is for you. The person who lets you merge in traffic is for you. Look for Him. He was in the fog for me today in a way that surprised me. Let Him surprise you today!

Dream Big! Pray Big!

When you stumble …

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When I shop, I always read the quirky sayings in stores. They are usually on a block of wood, a coaster, or a tea towel. I saw this saying on a stone coaster at the LA Arboretum. I took a picture of it to remember it (the image on the blog is my actual coaster). My dear friend who was shopping with me that day bought it for me as a Christmas gift. It is truly one of my favorite gifts. One – because she remembered I loved it and two – the phrase on it.

If you stumble, make it part of the dance

One change I would make is to change the IF to WHEN. We all stumble. No one is perfect or immune from mistakes in this world. So how do you handle it when you stumble? Do you blame others? Do you hide in embarrassment? Do you cry (I do this a lot more than I like to admit)? Do you get back up and try again? Or maybe you do all of the above.

The key to this phrase is “make it part of the dance.” As a performer (I’m a singer and a teacher), I often stumble in a public setting. I forget a word or phrase while I’m singing from time to time. However, when I do, I keep going. I make up new lyrics or repeat a phrase from somewhere else in the song. I do my best to not let it show in my face or body language. I continue on and most people are none the wiser. As a teacher, I have gone down the wrong path to which I tell students, “Stop, erase that, and let’s start over.” I can’t hide it as easily as I do when singing but addressing directly reduces the embarrassment of it.

The next time you stumble (and there will be a next time unfortunately), how can you change your reaction, or even your internal dialog, to “make it part of the dance?” You will never be perfect. You will never do it 100% right. However, you can enjoy the journey and embrace those stumbles and create a beautiful dance for others, and yourself, to enjoy.

Dream Big! Pray Big!

New Year New Thing

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“See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” ~ Isaiah 43:19

What new thing is God doing in and/or through you? There should be something. He is our creator and He creates constantly. We need to look for the new things He is opening up around us. So many of us get content with status quo. Nope. Not enough if you believe and follow Jesus Christ. He makes all things new. He creates new. He who began a good work in you will complete it. All of these verses point to His creativity and desire for progress. Status quo isn’t an option for God with us. Our goal is to become like Him. Huge goal. We will never achieve it fully on earth. If we settle and stop looking for new, we are going to be leaps and bounds away from that goal.

How can you measure progress? You don’t react to that friend as you normally would when she pushes your buttons. You took time to read God’s word and pray today. You set aside your need to help someone else in need. All of those are steps to becoming more like Christ.  As for the new thing, you are becoming new and improved with each one of these steps.

So I ask again, what new thing is God doing in and/or through you? It’s happening. He’s the creator and He’s creating in you so let Him do His work by looking for His hand on your life.

Dream Big! Pray Big!