A week ago I found myself in the “Christian Living” section of Barnes and Noble, looking for something inspirational. Motivational. Knock my socks off paradigm shifting, changing, mountain moving.
As I pulled book after book off the shelf, specifically from the women’s section, I kept seeing the same thing. On repeat.
You are enough.
Stop believing lies.
See yourself the way God sees you.
Claim your identity in Christ.
Do not fear.
All of these things were completely relatable TO ME and definitely issues women (and men) face. But standing there in the aisle at Barnes and Noble, I had this revelation.
We are always searching for that “thing” to change our lives. That diet, that book, that video, that person, that challenge – to spark our inspiration and shift our paradigm.
That life changing moment when everything is different and we find out who we are.
We lose that weight.
We find that friend.
We pay off that debt.
We forgive that person who hurt us.
We live every day to the fullest (best day ever!).
Trust me, I understand this. I love challenges, and I love bettering myself. I AM NOT SAYING THAT IS BAD, SO DON’T MISINTERPRET MY WORDS.
But I AM HERE to say something kind of revolutionary. Totally NOT NEW. But revolutionary in a society that is totally consumer driven and ME ME ME focused. It’s all about how…
WE can be better.
WE can know who we are.
WE can stop believing lies.
And guys, this is coming from a girl who wrote a book that is supposed to change your life for the better and help you choose the John 10:10 life! There is nothing bad about those things. But THOSE THINGS are not the answer.
We are looking in the wrong places.
It’s awesome to find that diet, that book, that video, that person who inspires us and shifts our paradigm. But before ANY diet, book, video or person can fulfill that longing we have to live the best life ever, there is something else we need to do. And I mean this when I say it.
We have to have to have to give it ALL UP for Jesus. All of it. I have to give Him my time, my gifts, my talents, my money, my family, my possessions, my habits, my vices, my virtues, my everything I haven’t named yet.
That means the answers I am searching for in a diet, a book, a video, or a person are not going to be found there. Until I have found my complete worth in Jesus, nothing else is going to fulfill me. Nothing else is going to give me joy. Nothing else.
And the only way I know to start is DISCIPLINE.
He has been working on this with me lately. I have found that in order for me to be kind, generous, compassionate, and fulfilled, I have to start my day with Him. Period. Because when I don’t, a whole lot of nasty can come out of my mouth.
In other words, for Jesus to be what comes OUT, a whole lotta Jesus has to go IN.
Someone I love very much once said, “It’s a discipline before it becomes a joy.”
I used to be that person who said, “I already have to get up early enough to get ready for school! I live 35 minutes away! How could I EVEN get up and spend time with Jesus?”
Because, my dear, you can’t survive without me. -Jesus
I used to be that person who said, “I pray all the time. Everywhere I go!”
But Carrie, I want you to put me first INTENTIONALLY. Give me your time. Set it apart. Sit quietly so that I can tell you how much WORTH you have in Me. -Jesus
I used to be that person who said, “I’m just so busy!”
Do you realize that when you die, you’ll be spending ETERNITY with me? I died on the cross so you could have that. Could you MAKE me the first part of your day? Is that so hard? Are you too busy for me? -Jesus
Until I know who I am in Christ, I won’t know WHO I am. And I won’t know either of those things unless I spend time with the guy who will tell me WHO I AM.
Now I can hardly wait to hang out with Jesus in the morning. He always shows up. It’s me who doesn’t always show up. It’s me who is selfish with my time.
When I was younger, I remember wondering how it was that people could be SO invested in their time in the Word, their time in prayer. I was always gearing up to read the newest Jennie Allen book (which are GREAT by the way, make sure you read ALL of her stuff).
Guys, it’s AWESOME to read Jennie. But I NEVER want to make Jennie more important than Jesus. I never want to make Christine Caine a Jesus replacement. Or Joyce Meyer. Or Beth Moore. Those girls are pointing me TO JESUS. And I am so glad.
But before I look to THEM, I need to look to Jesus. That’s where it’s at. And that’s where discipline has become a joy for me. Now I crave it. Because I know I can’t live (or die to myself) without it.
Hence, the title of this post. Everyone wants to be inspired. And if we let Him, He can be the most inspiring one of all.
He’s not sitting there with a bat waiting for you to mess up. He’s sitting on your couch, patting the seat, beckoning you to hang out with Him.
I’ve got more wild plans for you than you could EVER imagine. I am dying to spend time with you. Literally. -Jesus
Join us on May 4, 2019 for The Choose Conference, a place where we CHOOSE Jesus first. Women and teenage girls from 12 to 112 are going to get together in Fort Wayne to worship Jesus together.
It will be an interactive worship and teaching experience UNLIKE any conference you’ve ever attended before. Just you wait. The first 100 teenagers are free (those tickets are almost gone!), so sign up HERE as quickly as you can!