I was inspired today. I pondered how big things are accomplished; physically and spiritually. Who says, “I’m going to do this or that”, and then does it? How do big things get done?
And then I thought about that process in people. How do you become the thing you wanted to be when you grow up? And now that you’re grown up, are you that thing? What changed? If something changed, then how did you become what you are? …What are you?
I saw a post from @stephaniehenjum on Instagram that said “Ask yourself what is really important, and then have the courage to build your life around your answer. (Instagram – thegoodquote)”
I get that dreams sometimes change, but you are what you are, no matter what role you’re in or what you do. Life chisels us out of a raw blank… we each have an identity, we are known for something. Did we shape that identity? or, did circumstances shape us?
I think it is the easy thing to do to go with the flow of life and end up where it takes you. The other extreme would be driving hard and pushing hard for the things you want to become. Both seem somewhat undesirable. I find myself somewhere in the middle on this topic… not too laid back, not too driven, but intentional and flexible. I believe in setting goals, but I also understand when our values change our priorities.
The train trestle I saw today represents a big task, perhaps even equated to a huge accomplishment for someone. It was well built and spanned a deep gorge. As the train glided over it, there was not a creak, pop, or sway. I pondered the planners, the designers, the builders, and the maintainers. The footings were strong; anchored into the surrounding rocks. The frames were bolted together and neatly maintained. The whole structure spoke of its strength and stability. I saw evidence of the planner’s ideas, the designer’s concepts, the builder’s fortitude, and the maintainer’s consistency.
We each have ideas. We choose to pursue them or to leave them alone. If we are intentional, we plan our lives around those ideas. They become our motivation and purpose; sometimes our plans and ideas change because of circumstance, trial, or tragedy. While our focus might be diverted, we find new direction and motivation, and keep pressing on.
We inspire others through our actions. Others are encouraged when we hold to our values, they are inspired when they can see our perseverance. When you begin to build on previous lessons, you see results; they see results. Suddenly things start coming together. But building on your idea is not the end of your story. We need to maintain our plans and dreams… when we plan beyond ourselves, it’s called sustainability… your dreams can last long after you’re gone. It’s how Jesus built His Church, His Body, His Bride… Jesus didn’t just show up to show up; He showed His first disciples how to lead others, how to lead leaders, to disciple disciple-makers, how to propagate the Gospel message.
In my personal life, I have many mentors. In fact, I feel I can learn something from everyone; sometimes I learn how to do it, sometimes how to do things better, and sometimes how not to do things. One mentor challenged me… ‘What do you want to be known as?” he would ask, then continue, ”If you want to be known as a man of God’s Word, then you need to read, study, and apply God’s Word”.
There are so many areas that statement can be used: (Fill in the blank for your own life)
I want to be known as a __________ , then read, study, and apply ______.
How do you think the users of the train trestle feel when they are on it? What about the people in your circle of influence, how do you think they trust you? Do they trust you like the users trust that bridge? Have you proven yourself to be trustworthy? Have you followed through with plans and ideas in your life?
If not, how do you build trust in others? What if something unforeseen happens; How do you rebuild your dream, your influence, or ‘their’ trust?
Today, I am asking you to consider what you want to be known as? Is there room for improvement? Can I help you become who you think you want to be? (notice I didn’t say to DO what you to do?)
…What you DO leaks out of who you are. I’d love to hear your thoughts, dreams, setbacks, comebacks, or even your rebuilding stories.
Blessing to you as you become… you. be-YOU-tiful be YOU-nique