Below is the introduction to my book Moving Past the Start (working title). I’m not posting this to be lazy and not write something new and inspired for you all, my wonderful blog readers. This is to share my heart. This (what is written below) tells you my passion and I can think of nothing more vulnerable for me to do at this point than to share it with all of you. I hope as I continue to complete this adventure I am calling writing a book (ahh! sorry, momentary freak out about the daunting task that is proving to be), I will share more snippets from my research and discoveries.
Feel free to comment, I welcome the critique (I think) 🙂
I love books that inspire change. It’s not just about reading the words and going on with your life. Instead, it’s about reading the words, allowing your soul to digest what they are saying and giving the Spirit the freedom to move in your life and prompt change. Tom Stoppard says, “Words are sacred. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.”
It is all too easy to read a good (and inspiring) book, feel the conviction from the first page to the last, then set it aside with simply, “that was a good book,” mentality and never change your direction.
Andy Stanley says, “Direction, not intention, determines your destination.”
I want to be a world changer. Not by myself, but I want to inspire others to join in and become world changers. It’s not as impossible of a dream as it may sound. We each have a unique circle of influence. Some people have a very small circle, whereas others have what seems like impossibly large circles (I’m friends with a couple of these people). We are not asked to change the world by ourselves, rather spread the need for change within our own circles. Then those within our circles spread it to their circles, and so on. This ripple effect can genuinely change lives, and thus, change the world.
I dream a lot. I like to imagine what it would be like to be an author (for a living) and be asked to speak at conferences sharing the insights that God has given me. I imagine what it would be like to create a nonprofit organization to reach young ladies. To create an organization whose entire purpose is built to encourage and inspire them in their faith and provide resources for them to achieve their dreams. I imagine what my girls will be like as they grow older. I imagine what the world will look like for this next generation, and that leads me to imagine what it will be like when Jesus comes back.
The world is quickly falling apart and Christians speak against a lot of what is going on, but how much are we actually doing? We post quotes and stats on our social media pages, but never leave the comfort of our couches to actually do anything about that which we are “standing” against. We’re writing until our fingers develop calluses to inspire change, but if we don’t start that change, what good are our words?
The older I grow, the more I realize that my comfort zone is as an introvert. I like being around people I know and have relationships with. I like spending time with just my family and find it challenging to be put in the middle of a group of people I don’t know and be asked to initiate conversation. But what good does that do in regards to the Kingdom? I talk with people I already know, who already know me. I share my story with people who have either already heard it, or who don’t need the wisdom I’ve learned from living it.
God allows certain events to occur in our lives (both good and bad) to guide us and to change us, and to ultimately grow us. He is cultivating our lives to change his Kingdom and to bring as many hearts to him as we can prior to the second coming. He is allowing us time to reach out to more people. That is why Jesus hasn’t come back yet. Not because the world hasn’t gone to hell and a hand basket more than once. Think of all of the atrocities that have been piling up in this world, the straight up inhumanities that are occurring in our own back yards. And what are Christians doing about it? Sitting in our pews on Sunday morning, singing about the mercies of our God, resting in our “middle class” comfort zones with our 3/2 homes and minivans, sheltering our children from all of the injustices of this world by not allowing them to live in the world and learn how to live in the world without being of the world…it does nothing to change it. Yes, enjoy and learn from those gifted to teach on Sunday mornings (or Thursday nights, or Saturday nights, whenever you go to service). Yes, thank God for providing you with a wonderful home, a vehicle to get to and from, and an income that allows your family to be in need of nothing. Yes, guard the hearts of your children however God leads you to and train them up in the way they will go so that when they are older they will not stray from it.
But what are we doing about changing the word? Where are we allowing God to take us that will allow Him to show the world all of his wonder and glory? And why are we, as believers, okay with staying in our comfort zones when God has clearly called us to so much more?
That is what this is about.
This is about change.
This about realizing the potential that God has placed inside each and every one of us and allowing him to take back control of that potential to allow it to become a reality.
This about getting out of the blocks of the race that we have, up to this point, been okay with watching rather than participating.
This is about getting past the start and finishing strong so that on that day, you can stand before God and he can say, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”