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First You Drywall Then You Decorate

So, yeah, this is how it’s going to be. I just can’t seem to help it, but here I am writing another blog about our building project. It’s just that the more we go through this process, the more I’m seeing parallels to my spiritual life that I just can’t wait to share!! So here’s this week’s discovery: I like the end result more than I like the process of getting there. (Surprise, surprise!) Here’s what’s happening. For those of you who don’t know, this summer my brother and I are embarking on a major remodeling project. We are turning our garage into office space. For months, we’ve been planning, saving, and working with a contractor, waiting for the day when the building will actually begin. Earlier this month, we were finally able to start: we emptied the garage and started the work that we had to do before the contractor came. And now we wait—-NOT my favorite part. But here’s something I’ve discovered about myself in the waiting—-My brain wants to jump right to the end of the project and see the final results. I am full of plans for what color to paint the walls, how I want to arrange the furniture, where I want to hang pictures, set up our desks, even arrange the pillows on the sofa. But when it comes to the details of choosing a heating system, what kind of insulation to put in the walls and ceiling, what type of flooring and siding we need, I am absolutely bored out of my mind. Seriously, there’s nothing “pretty” about these things. I don’t care where they run a wire or put a pipe…I just want to get to the end result of the room. And yet, this month, the Holy Spirit has been showing me that this attitude is wrong. Several times He’s convicted me of not putting enough prayer, time, and research into the important things that are the foundation of the room but instead jumping ahead to which pillows will look best on the sofa. (I’m such a girl). As I’ve been responding to His conviction and changing my attitudes (and learning about HVAC systems and 220 amp wires), I’ve been thinking about how this is similar to our attitudes about our lives. Specifically, I’ve been pondering how often we choose to focus on the destination—-where God is taking us and how great it will be—-when the Holy Spirit is focused on the foundational aspects of making us into the people God wants us to be when we get there. While we’re planning how we’ll manage the blessing we’re sure God has promised us, the Holy Spirit wants us to focus on the foundational issues. Are we maintaining a relationship with God? Are we spending time learning God’s Word and choosing to live by it? How are our relationships with others? What is our work ethic? Are there things in our past that need to be healed and overcome? Is there a sin that we need to confess and put behind us? Is there an offense we need to forgive? An area where we are living in disobedience and rebellion toward God? Do we have our finances in order? Are we tithing? Working to pay off debt? Saving for the future?

Are we people of integrity and purity? Essentially, are we paying proper attention to the essential details of our lives that we often find boring, tedious, or mundane, yet, in God’s eyes are foundational to His plan for our lives? Because here’s the thing I’ve seen far too often: People who get so caught up in the “the dream”, “finding their sweet spot”, “waiting for God’s will for their lives” that they totally ignore being the person God wants them to be. Yet, because they don’t submit to God’s process for their lives, His hands are tied and He can’t give them the promises they so badly crave. If there is one message that I could share with someone who is searching for God’s purpose and plan for their lives it would be this: Don’t focus on the destination. Instead, focus on allowing the Holy Spirit to making you into the person He wants you to become and let God worry about the destination. Maintain a close relationship with Jesus and stay in His Word.

Allow God to work on your heart and change any part of you that He wants to change. Walk through every door of opportunity that God opens—-even if it may not seem like “the big door”. Obey Biblical principles—-obedience is so important. Focus your attention on the foundational principles and let God lead you where He wants you to go. Don’t put the cart before the horse (or in my case, the decorating before the drywall).

Be willing to put in the work to become who God created you to be and trust that He will lead you where you need to go. Put first things first—-and watch God honor it. Okay, now I have to go pay attention to a boring construction detail. Have a great day! Adessa

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