Wednesday, January 9, 2008

The Gap

Is it possible to not grow because you are stuck on what you want to be instead of who you are?
Living in that Gap can be toxic to one’s walk with God.

I know where I’d like to be. I know where I should be. Am I happy where I am? Am I stuck where I am? Is it possible to not grow because you are stuck on what you want to be instead of who or where you are?

I call this are the gap; living in this mentality of, “I wish I was there.” This is living in the gap. Living in the gap between where you are and where you want to be. It is healthy to aspire to succeed or grow; it is good to have goals and dreams. You see this in academic studies, teenagers graduating high school, in dating relationships, and in the journeys of people following Christ. I remember when I graduated high school I was ready (or at least I thought I was) to take over the world! After the month of celebrating my new found freedom from high school all this excitement came to a screeching halt at the destination of this gap. I was so caught up with what I would do with my life, where I’d go, where I’d be, how would I do this or that, etc. that I was stuck frozen not moving forward like I wanted to in the first place. I find this to be a common reality in dating relationships, especially Christian dating relationships. The guy or girl get so excited of what the relationship could be and where it could go that the final destination or fantasy of that relationship is all they focus on and thus do not move forward but continue living in this gap between reality and fantasy. I also see this happen in the lives of those who follow Christ.

I’ll give you an example of how this could start; it almost started in the bible with some of Christ’s followers after He ascended to heaven. “They were looking intently up into the sky as he was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them. 11"Men of Galilee," they said, "why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven(Acts 1:10-11)." So after Jesus ascended to heaven you can imagine what you would do, I know I can think of my response. Wait, come back here, when will you come back, man I can’t believe He is gone, I guess we should wait here until He comes back… These would all be running through my head and I am sure at least a few were in these disciples heads too. Could you imagine if they did just keep standing there hoping for the return. What if after Paul had this experience with Jesus in Acts 9, what if He just stayed there thinking about what he was going to do, what he could do, or where he would go? What if after I gave my life to Christ I just stayed knelt before that stage at church and kept thinking about what was going to happen? God requires action from us, our faith is to be an active faith. We cannot get stuck on living or becoming the man or woman of God so much that we become static in our faith. Dynamic is the name of the game folks! We should accept where we are, because God does, flaws and all, and just keep pursuing the goal, to be more like Christ. Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize(1 Corinthians 9:24-27).” God wants us to move, run, run like we want to win a race. Paul captures this idea brilliantly!
Are you stuck in a rut, the gap of who you want to be? God wants you to be something great! The more you pursue Him and become more like Him, the more you become the great man or woman He created you to be. You cannot become anything by just sitting there. Don’t be discouraged by something you are not, you will get there, just keep pushing and running that race. Get out of that gap. I pray you will come to accept yourself for who and where you are and leave the gap and start living the life f beauty He offers.

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