Full Life Reflections: February 16th
Can I share a truth bomb with you? I’ve been frustrated lately.
During the summer of 2022, I decided I was going to put in the time and effort to begin writing a book. For those who have written books, you know it takes a lot of dedication and work. As I’ve taken on this great endeavor, there’s been a lot more to take in than I anticipated. As soon as I’ve reached one goal, there’s quickly more work to be done. Some days it seems like I’ve barely made a dent in the long road ahead.
Feeling overwhelmed recently, I called my husband to complain. My once confident heart was replaced with fear. “Can I still do this?” I thought. My brain couldn’t wrap itself around all the work, possible expenses, travel, research, and actual writing that still needed to be done for this project. Quickly forgetting my God-given progress, I felt defeated looking ahead to the mountain still in front of me. I was at a standstill. Putting off writing for another day, I complained and allowed my brain to run wild with negativity.
Patiently listening to my frustration on the phone that day, my husband reminded me, “Take it one day at a time. You can’t eat an elephant all at once”. And I knew he was right. I needed to keep moving forward, taking bites of my elephant. I needed to trust God would continue to guide my progress as He’d already been doing even if I couldn’t see the end.
My complaining reminded me of the Israelites after their exodus from Egypt right before they crossed the Red Sea. They couldn’t see a way forward, so they sat and complained, forgetting all of God’s blessings up to that point. God’s chosen people were brought out of Egypt, freed from slavery, and promised a land flowing with milk and honey (Exodus 12-13). Yet, when Pharaoh’s horses and chariots came darting toward them at the Red Sea, the Israelite’s fear set in,
“Didn’t we say to you in Egypt, ‘Leave us alone; let us serve the Egyptians?’ It would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the desert!” (Exodus 14:12).
The Israelites actually said they wished God never brought them out of Egypt. When hardships struck, they immediately wanted to go back to what they knew- slavery. They were afraid to move forward in freedom because it took work. But God had greater plans for His people. God had entrusted them with freedom, and now they needed to trust God with what was up ahead, even if they couldn’t see beyond the sea.
How easy it is for each of us to sink back into wanting what was old because we’re afraid of the hard work or the unfamiliar ahead. Sometimes it’s easier to complain and move back into complacency rather than put in the work or simply keep moving in the right direction.
God finally instructed Moses and the Israelites,
“Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelites to MOVE ON” (Exodus 14:15).
This was their time to act. This was their time to move forward.
I believe this is true for each of us. Sometimes we get stuck in only seeing the mountain we have to scale rather than remembering Who called us to that mountain and what lies on the other side. We let fear stifle our progress and resort to distractions, complaints, or just staying in prayer without moving in the way God is calling us. It’s not that God doesn’t want us to pray, but we can pray in our movement as we trust God. It’s in these times of doubt, we need to reflect and remember God’s blessings in our life- remember His faithfulness as we move on.
As I continue on in this writing journey, I can’t see the end of it or fully wrap my brain around all of it, and that’s scary. But I trust God. And I pray He will encourage me to stay the course, put in the work, and remember His faithfulness as I move forward with what He has put before me.
Photo by Rok Romih: https://www.pexels.com/photo/person-in-red-jacket-and-black-pants-walking-on-snow-covered-ground-3848197/