You’ve probably heard some of these familiar sayings:
All of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.
—2 Corinthians 3:18 NLT
Did Christ finish his work for us? Then there can be no doubt but he will also finish his work in us.
—John Flavel (c.1627–1691)
I don’t imagine that the word “spreadsheet” invokes excitement or joy in any but the most hardcore of office warriors. I know it sure doesn’t for me.
Nevertheless, this week I needed to overhaul one of our spreadsheets, adding functionality, such as a constant automatic tally of items gone out in a month, remaining stock, breakdown of item stock into various categories, etc. Oh joy!
It’s a clichéd résumé line, but I’m a goal-oriented person. For as long as I can remember, I’ve set goals, and in particular New Year’s goals, and then worked to achieve them. A lot of New Year’s resolutions fail because they’re just things people say while caught up in a moment of passion (or guilt), only to soon forget or ignore. That isn’t the case for me.
Most people have heard the acronym “YOLO” thrown around for the past couple of years. It stands for “you only live once.” Pop stars and celebrities have made it a catchphrase to promote doing crazy things or taking risks because, hey, “You only live once!”
It’s an attractive thought. Why worry about the future? Why subscribe to having to answer for decisions we make when we can pretend it all doesn’t matter anyway? Why can’t we only be concerned about what makes us happy right now?
It’s understandable to look at what’s ahead with some trepidation. Maybe as you look back you see the struggles, uncertainty, and perhaps even setbacks that have shaken your life. Sorrows and disappointments that were pretty overwhelming may still weigh on your heart. That can make the future seem intimidating.
The best way to ensure that you’re making progress is to make an effort each day to take a step forward. Take a step in the right direction in some area you’re working on. Refuse to vegetate or settle down. Stay stirred up by launching out into some new venture. Try something new, learn something new, do something new.
On a rare day that I actually had a bit of time to do some organizing, I came to a realization about myself (not the most impressive one): I have a lot of “unfinished business,” at least to do with personal projects. When I receive work with a deadline, I strive to accomplish that in a timely fashion. Because someone is counting on me, I don’t want to disappoint them by being tardy.
Take a look at the natural world. Look at the plants as they sprout new leaves and the flowers as they blossom. Look at the little birds as they learn how to take flight for the first time. Look at the little kittens and puppies and how enthusiastic they are about each opportunity to explore and learn new things. Learning and growing makes the world beautiful, and it can make your life beautiful as well.
In a way, we are all unfinished business, as far as God’s concerned. He’s started a lot of “projects” that are well begun, even perfect in their own right, but aren’t complete. Luckily for us, the Master never stops work on His creation—the molding, the shaping, the chiseling, the polishing are all to help us make progress and bring us closer to Him.
Here are five steps you can take to grow in your relationship with your heavenly Father.