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Spirit-Led Woman

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The SpiritLed Woman podcast is empowering women weekly to follow their purpose in Christ and boldly walk in faith. Listen at charismapodcastnetwork.com.


I’m trying to get papers filed. Trying being the optimum word. One of my best friends says, “The difference between trying and doing is actually getting something done.” I don’t think I quoted that exactly, but you get the idea.

I’ve gotten a lot done, but sometimes I feel like I just shuffle things around. Usually when I’m organizing, I feel like I’m just moving things from one floor or room of my house to another. I’m working on it, though. I really am.

So, I decided I was going to go through a bunch of boxes and get some order back. And I found a plastic box full of pages I’d ripped out of magazines—mostly Country Living. Pictures of rooms, furniture arrangements and anything else I loved. I think I’d planned on making a binder of my favorite things because I found page protectors in the box as well. (Sounds like a good project for one of my creative kids!)

Looking at all the pictures brought a smile to my face. I enjoy dreaming about, looking forward to and planning for the future, imagining wonderful things.

Recently I was sharing with a friend how when I found out about my husband’s affair and knew the potential of him leaving, I imagined what our life would be like if we reconciled. I thought about how our relationship could be better than ever, how our love could be stronger, and how we could have a vital ministry to others who were struggling. When reconciliation didn’t happen, God refined my vision.

Now I look forward to what God is going to do in my life in a different way. I look forward to what God is going to do in the lives of my children. I have great hopes and dreams for us all!

“Expect great things from God. Attempt great things for God.” —William Carey

I think it is part of the forgetting what lies behind and straining toward what is ahead.

"Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus" (Phil. 3:12-14, ESV).

What does God have for us? Whatever it is, God uses some interesting words to describe our journey to get it: pressing and straining.

Pressing. During my brief running career a few years ago, I recall at the beginning of my “training” (it is in quotes because I didn’t really train well; hence the brevity of my running career) I would run increasingly longer distances, but always the first mile or so was absolute torture and the final half-mile would seem like slogging through mud. During both of those times I’d have to keep my focus ahead and press with my whole body to move forward. It was a pressing of feet on pavement, a pressing of body into the momentum forward, a pressing of breath in and out, a pressing onward.

Straining. That one isn’t difficult to imagine—especially with my running analogy. There was always an element of straining—and panting, plodding, trudging and wooziness. I’m not a good runner (especially with the broken foot!).

In thinking about pressing and straining in my walking (or running) out my faith, I believe having a vision is helpful. When I have something to strive for, I do better. Although with running I don’t need a stop sign or a set tree to run to—in fact, I’d prefer not to have a visual because sometimes I just feel like I’ll never get there. But if I have a vision of the end, then I enjoy running more. I imagine how I’ll feel at the end, the sense of accomplishment, the joy of being done.

I think I might be a little bit like that in my spiritual life as well. I don’t need to actually see where I’m going. Hey! That sounds a little like faith!

"Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen" (Heb. 11:1).

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