This summer has been one of the most exciting I’ve ever had.
Last Friday night I spent time with local people who love art at our Art Walk. Wow, it was amazing to see everyone enjoy my paintings, almost 20 of them for sale, for my first ever Art Show. Several of my acquaintances commented and said, “We didn’t know you paint!” or “Wow! When did you start?” When I told them, they couldn’t believe I already have a show. Someone said, “I went to school for art, and I have never had a show.” I thought about that a lot. Maybe I was rushing things and having a show too soon. Maybe I should have waited until I am a little more of a veteran with my painting. Why hadn’t I considered that before?
I don’t know. I guess I don’t even pause to doubt if someone will hate my work. Because I know someone WILL hate my work. His name is the devil. He’d love it if I entertained the “fear of failure” and would stop moving. But I don’t. I just keep going. I may get down for a minute when things don’t fly off the shelves, but to me it’s a numbers game. There will be that one person who loves one of these ideas or creative works and they will want it. In fact, I am surrounded by people who want it. They are movers and shakers too. They love to push to the next thing and not be hindered by the fears and doubts the devil throws. Together this has created an anticipation for what’s next. It has caused a wave of momentum in our life like nothing I’ve ever experienced.
Paul must have felt this way too. God just kept giving him new assignment after new assignment, because Paul showed up. Then he began to really press in and go for the finish line in each assignment. He didn’t look back, right or left, just at what was next. What healing? What deliverance? What was on his plate for the day. Then people joined him.
“Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, [mature] be thus minded: and if in anything ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you.” Phil 3:13-15
Today’s verse in our Philippians journey is in bold. This is how God wants us to think. He wants us focused on what’s next. It takes practice to think this way and sometimes I have to really pray for help. Many people would call this “forward thinking”. I call it “next step thinking.” I can only take the next step anyway, so why not let God reveal which one it should be? And here it says, “God shall reveal even this unto you.” What a blessing and a comfort to know that I don’t have to have all the answers. As we’ve followed this in our life with a positive outlook at what blessings and abundance God will bring, He has done just that. Everyday has become a thrill almost like Christmas. I think to myself, “Wow, if God could do all that He did yesterday and it could be that good, what could He do for me today?” Do you know the pressure this relieves? DO you know the joy it introduces and the thankfulness! Wow! I’m riding a JOY ROCKET! It’s like a tidal wave of love, peace, abundance and truth. Tidal waves start building way out in the ocean and by the time they hit the shore they are huge. God wants to bring a tidal wave of joy and enjoyment to your life but you have to let Him show you how to paddle.
“But I have all, and abound: I am full…” Philippians 4:18a
God wants this for each one of us. So come on and join me, ride this wave!