This is a full journal. For the past six years, I’ve recorded church sermons that “hit home,” written prayers when I felt so scattered I couldn’t pray the words in my head, and taped Mother’s Day cards from my boys. I’ve reread it more often than I’ve written it in, to simply be reminded of all the things that resonated with me, to see how God answers prayers, to be reminded of His presence when life feels full of distractions.
And just a couple weeks ago? It was full. No more blank pages. No more room.
It was FANTASTIC.
Hello?! I’m an achiever!
Then I realized: this is a perfect blend between my to-do list personality (fill the journal, get your writing in!) and God’s request of me to be in relationship with him. Holy crap. I found a “good” accomplishment in my relationship with God.
But I feel like accomplishments are not always well appreciated in the believing community. Unless it’s a mission trip – then “PRAISE JESUS for what you’ve done for the kingdom!”
You completed a Bible study book? That’s nice. How have you grown? How can you grow more? What’s next?
God answered your prayer? Great. What’s the next prayer you can focus on?
Are we ever allowed to just appreciate our accomplishment? Can we ever take a break from “the next thing?”
I’ve often felt church teaching pressing on me a negative association with God and production. Shoot – that’s what this whole blog is about! While service is an act of doing and is encouraged for all followers of Christ, there’s a polar opposite reminder to slow down and focus while reading the Word, praying, and growing in community with others.
The only next logical step was to see what God’s Word says about getting something done.
“But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded.” 2 Chronicles 15:7
P.S. I’m totally taking this verse out of context. It’s totally not about finding purpose through accomplishment. Isn’t it interesting how we pluck one scripture out of a larger story and make it work to justify our current circumstance? It reminds me of this one…
“May he give you the desires of your heart and make all your plans succeed.” Psalm 20:4 …umm…can we talk about twisting that verse up pretty darn quick? Better remember Psalm 37:4 “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” Because only when your heart is in alignment with God do you get what both you and God want. I hope God feels excited about my accomplishment of a full journal detailing my growing relationship with me. I like to think we’re “on the same page” (oh, yeah, you saw what I did there) in delighting in that together.
And I could not be more excited about my new journal (clean, fresh pages, amiright, Type A-ers?).