Monday, June 18, 2012

You Say It's Your Birthday


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.
Philippians 3:13

Today is my 29th birthday, my last year before the big 3-0. Each year on my birthday, I can't help but assess the prior year's happenings, achievements, and accomplishments. 

It seems the world has wired us this way. After all, in the workforce, we all have resumés that boast of our successes and excellencies.  And, if a person has, in fact, achieved great things, then her resumé might bring some sort of glory or honor to her self-esteem. But for those of us who are just regular, old people, our resumés are far less convincing that we are great. 

A few weeks ago, as my birthday approached, I started to think back over the past year. I was a bit deflated, once I realized that I hadn't really accomplished all that much, at least not in my own eyes. Sure, I've taken forward steps in a few areas of growth. But mostly, things don't seem all that different than they did on this day last year. Have you ever felt that way?

But God...

God stopped me in my tracks and reminded me that He's not looking for me to be great. Instead, He is looking for me to be obedient/faithful/trusting/believing/watchful. See, this is an entirely different framework. A whole new mindset. 

God doesn't need me to achieve anything. And, He certainly doesn't want me to keep a roster of all that I've achieved. Because, at the end of the day or month or year, I've achieved nothing. It's all Him. 

I need not review what's gone and done.  I have not yet taken hold of the fullness of the gospel. That's evident in my rudimentary thinking. Because, the gospel says that we, who are nothing but sinners, can achieve nothing on our own. That's where Christ steps in.  

Father, let me forget everything that's behind, except the cross. Propel me forward, that I might be watchfully obedient to your work. 

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