2018 goals right here. Scheduling regular days like this to get away from the noise and alone with God. But when I finally got to this much anticipated destination today, after a very busy holiday season, I found it hard to be still, to not do any work (which I wouldn’t let myself bring) and to quiet the desire inside to be productive or gain something from this time. As Americans, we are addicted to being busy or consuming content from somewhere 24/7. I confess.
It wasn’t long before I recognized my “detox” responses, and began asking myself:
How long can I sit with God before presenting a problem, asking for direction, or wanting to take away something? Can I not just be still here on this gorgeous beach and know that He is God? Even when I know I’m addicted to doing and try to remedy that with this silence and solitude retreat, my heart still drifts towards busyness.
This is exactly why God wants our hearts before he wants the good things we might do that flow from our hearts. It matters what sort of heart the things we do flow from. Is it a heart full of gratitude for what Jesus has done for me, or a heart busy earning my worth? Jesus didn’t just save us from the bad our heart is inclined to do, but also the do-more-busyness-itch it’s inclined to scratch, the thirst to attain value by our own merit. (AKA religion) Sin is a double sided coin.
It’s sneaky. Sometimes pursuing God can even become more about us and our personal growth and satisfaction then it is about God and His glory.
🤔Why do we want to become “the best versions of ourselves in 2018?” Lose 10 pounds? 🙋🏼♀️Achieve the next notch in the ladder? Become more ____(fill in the blank.) Is it really about God, or could we say “it is well with my soul” in the tension that would remain if God halted our goals this year? Sometimes He shines even brighter through our cracks as broken vessels, when we let others see the process of God working us into new creations, instead of rushing to present the final products. We like to be busy and for others to see the results too, but would we be enough if we weren’t busy? If didn’t have results to show come 2019?
In recent years, the gospel has taken deeper roots 🌱 as injuries benched my fitness goal “musts” and leaps of faith weeded out my need to people-please, and through it all, He’s taught me to ask myself, “would I (Jesus) be enough for you if you didn’t have this?” This question is continually reshaping me and the way I orient my life, as it is today on the beach. “Is sitting with me enough for you today, Laura? Worship me and be grateful for all I have done, what else do you need?”
Instead of spending more time doing for God, I want to spend more time being with God, in a posture of gratitude, awe and worship, giving “glory, honor and thanks” like all of heaven is currently singing on repeat:
“Holy holy holy is the LORD God Almighty
Who was and is and is to come.” (Revelation 4:8)
God doesn’t need us to do more stuff for Him, we can’t earn His love or approval, Jesus already did that on our behalf, but sometimes we scratch our busy itch to fill a God-shaped hole. God just wants our ever-wandering hearts to be captured by Jesus, overflowing in worship- just like the elders in heaven who are continually bowing down, laying their crowns down before him singing,
“You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being.” (Revelations 4:8)
These “top notch status” elder’s crowns represent their status and good works, and they are what is laid down at God’s feet in worship, but the crowns are an after thought in this room of ultimate worship. What they did and who they became was like a pin drop in a mega concert hall, and yet we live like what we do and who we become is everything, instead worshiping the King of Kings is everything, not just in heaven, but on earth.
Everything we do is for God’s glory, but ultimately, it has nothing to do with what we do, and everything to do with magnifying and adoring Him in our heart of hearts, then allowing that to impact all we do. I need more of this posture in my life, like on a moment by moment basis. I think it would change a lot about what my doing and being would look like, too. I don’t think I’d need to scratch the busyness itch as much when I focus on worshiping the One who’s already accomplished everything, “He (not me) who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” Phil.1:6.