“What do you want?”
I was on vacation and spending some time with the Lord on one of my favorite paths by the ocean. Out of the blue I heard God ask me to get still and listen to my own desires. When I listed things I wanted for ministry or others …. He stopped me. What do YOU want for YOU?
I was caught off guard. Shouldn’t I give up what I want for what He wants? Isn’t that the good Christian life? More of Him, less of me? Die to self? Pick up my cross and follow Him?
I realized I didn’t know what I wanted. I’d spent so much time serving others that I’d forgotten what made me happy. Months went by and as the question came up again I was still drawing a blank. How could I not know what I wanted?
Things I wanted seemed shallow. Things like I wanted to get back in shape, buy a house, find that special person to walk through life with and take more vacations. But they didn’t feel like those were spiritual enough. Then I remembered Solomon … so I said I want wisdom!
But God kept wooing me by saying my dreams were His dreams for me. I was resisting.
I realized I’d believed some lies and those were holding me back from discovering God’s plan for my life. Because how He made me, with all my desires and preferences, are an indication of what I was created to do.
God likes to do new things. We can’t let our past achievements or failures determine the level of effort we put toward the new thing. God doesn’t always work the same way with everything He does. What worked for one thing may not work for the next. What didn’t work last time may work this time. We can learn from the past but we can’t let it dictate our future.
God works all things together for good. When I look back at the things God has done in my life I can see how He allowed me to pour energy into something that didn’t give the return I hoped for. It was only later that I could see the value of that season. Usually it was the character in me that was valuable not the measurable outcome.
God is a builder and knits things together. My life is proof positive that you can change careers a million times. And I’m not saying similar careers that transition well. I’m tired of completely dumping the last thing I was doing and starting from scratch. I am keenly aware that there are others that have been working in their field for decades and I won’t ever be able to catch up. But I come in with things they don’t because I’ve been diverse. That adds value to the new thing.
God is a good Father and has great plans for us. The enemy wants to tell us we won’t achieve our dreams because of our lack of skills, resources or network. That is just a big fat lie!
God puts dreams in our hearts and only asks us to prayerfully take one step at a time closer to it.
When we walk with God and let Him speak to our desires we can trust Him to try new things. Because we have a history of His presence not our successes. When we talk to God we need to ask and believe for our dreams.
I know where I want to end up and need His wisdom on how to get there. I don’t know what the entire path looks like but after meeting with Him I know the first step. I am happy to keep trying as long as He is with me. When I fail, I know His love. When I succeed I give Him the glory and praise. It’s a win either way.
Jill Monaco is an author, speaker and life coach. As the Founder and CEO of Jill Monaco Ministries, a 501c3 non profit that publishes the online magazine SingleMatters.com. She is also the creator of the interactive coaching program for singles From Looking To Loving: Find the Breakthrough You Need So You Can Have The Relationship You Want. She developed the Freedom Coach Model and loves helping people find freedom and purpose so they can live a life they love. As a teacher and speaker, Jill is known for captivating audiences with her high-energy, humorous approach to life’s serious issues. You can learn more about Jill at www.jillmonaco.com.
The Life of a Single Mom is a national, faith-based, nonprofit that exists to see that no single mom walks alone. To date, we have worked with more than 1,500 churches & community groups to start or improve a single mom’s support group in cities throughout the U.S. and beyond. We have a large array of books, curriculum, training materials, and online instructional videos to support ministry leaders who lead single moms. Our single mom programs focus on empowering single moms to grow spiritually, emotionally, financially, and parentally through a number of projects including: Single Mom University, Single Moms Across America, the National TLSM Single Moms Conference, and a variety of programs throughout the U.S. For more information, visit www.thelifeofasinglemom.com