“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Have you ever looked beyond your dreams and aspirations to see where you might end up? Not just the physical journey, but who you may become on the inside? Are you looked up to or respected for all the right reasons in all that you do?
There are so many ways that we may want to be described from a positive role model, a good influence, or an inspiration. Too often we may not be the person that people think we are and instead of being proud of what is being said we feel shame or embarrassment. There is nothing like being able to hold your head high and know inside that they are speaking the truth. However, not many of us can say who we are deep inside.
We don’t often peel back a few layers to take a look at ourselves and see what we may find inside. Many times this happens because when we are moving forward we encounter the past or that hidden thorn we had forgotten about even though we finally found the path that we have been seeking for so long. Past fears, past rejections, or even past failures can prevent us from taking those final steps to true self-discovery. This is when we keep taking those positive steps and as the clichés go, find out what’s on the inside, what we are made of, or can we bend without breaking.
No matter how you phrase it, staying on track while you are pursuing your dreams is not always the easiest thing to do. Then once you accomplish what you set out to do there can be an interesting moment when you pause to reflect before continuing. As you stand there looking in the mirror you have to decide if you like who you have become. If you did that right now what would you see?
I have done this several times over the years with mixed results, but I know that my life did not become more positive till I chose to walk again with the Lord. This journey was very similar to the one that we have been on in this series. I spent too much time floating on the wind and depending how hard it blew was where I ended up. Either I landed closer to God or two valleys over next to Ezekiel with the rest of the dry bones.
One glorious night I took, not just a positive step, but a leap and chose to sincerely follow Romans 10:9. “That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” This is when my vision cleared and a renewed Spirit flooded my soul. The experience itself was overwhelming, but it was not like a switch that changed everything in an instant with no more struggles. The new possibilities that appeared on the road ahead seemed promising, although some were still far from becoming reality.
I’m sure that all of us had moments in our life where you were making positive progress and had to pause when the finish line was in sight. Sometimes it is difficult to remain patient while the final pieces fall into place without our excitement spoiling the outcome. It’s even harder if you can see the flag flying high in the distance to mark the finish, but it is on the other side of the hill or on top of the next mountain. Romans 12:12 gives us another option before we cause something negative to happen, “Rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer.”
Most of us don’t consider being thankful if we have not reached our destination yet. We forget about how far we have travelled and everything we have overcome. It’s like going to the store and they have everything on your list except your favorite snack. Even though you don’t really need it you get upset instead of being happy that they had the other twenty things you needed. How we react during this time may have a direct bearing on the goal we are trying to attain. This is where you could hear something like you should keep your head up and act like a champion.
However, I prefer to lift my eyes to the Lord and behave like the person that He would want me to be. A reflection of the confident strength He fills me with as I continue to walk with Him. As our opening scripture tells us, He has plans for us to prosper, to give us hope and a future. Too many times we venture out on our own or think we know better then we end up in the wrong place or become a person we don’t want to be.
What was the new choice you made at the beginning of this series? Where are you now with your journey? I can tell you that I have made significant progress with mine, but I am not done yet. In my heart I know that the Lord wants good things for me and that through Him I will succeed. If doubts start creeping back into my mind I can go to Him in prayer. I can also find motivation in the Bible with scriptures such as Philippians 2:13. “For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.”
It took me a long time to get where I am now, and I know that the Lord is not done with me yet. So, even though my destination is unknown I am choosing to be His light and the example that He would want me to be. If along the way I trip or get a little off course I will call on Him for the strength and guidance I need. So, join me in letting the Lord show you who you are and who you can be. Now enjoy the last part of the “Close To” poem, “Who You Truly Are.”
WHO YOU TRULY ARE
As I keep moving forward I discovered there’s so much more that I can do,
When I use everything that I have been given and draw my strength from you.
The path that I have before me leads so much farther than I can see,
I could not have imagined all these blessings you have bestowed on me.
It is an awesome feeling when you discover who you are deep inside,
You can face the world with a renewed Spirit and a joy you cannot hide.
Just remember to remain faithful even when the road gets rough,
I will be there walking beside you and you will find this is enough.
There are so many good things that lie before you, no need to be looking back,
Let My Spirit continue to guide you along My path so you can keep on track.
If you continue to believe in Me as well as yourself you can surely go far,
My love and mercy will protect you so you can find out Who You Truly Are.