Check Your Bags At The Curb

If youve ever rushed through an airport terminal with two heavy suitcases and a carry-on, youve realized the importance of packing light for a trip. Those bags have a way of weighing you down. Our emotional baggage has the same effect. Clinging on to past failures and regrets hinders walking freely with Christ. The weight of this burden slows down your pursuit of God by diverting your attention from the future. In essence, you are walking into the future facing the wrong direction. The problem is you were designed to move forward, not backwards.

While reflecting on the condition of your heart during the last blog post, you were forced to confront the emotional baggage you continue to carry. There will be a tendency to pick a word out of guilt and utilize it in a way it was never intended: to make up for regrets of the past. Guilt never produces lasting transformation. Your word must move you forward by keeping your life heading into the promise of the future. The hope that you cling to is that even though the past cannot be fixed, it can be redeemed. The past maybe irreparable, but the future is always available. Take a moment to reflect on the motives behind the words you are considering.

  • Read 1 Peter 5:7. Are any of the words on your list driven by the desire to make up for past mistakes? How is this causing you to continue to hold on to the burdens of the past? Which word(s) seems to propel you forward towards the hope of future change?

FOR THOSE THAT HAVE ALREADY PICKED THEIR WORD FOR 2010

The idea of relationships is simply about connecting or more importantly finding a connection.  The implication is that you must be proactive by searching for these points of connection and common ground.  Then you need to go a step further and bear with one another instead of checking out or running when things get too personal.  You want so desperately to be known; yet you set boundaries up in your mind.  If an individual gets to close to those boundaries, you start to rethink your connection to them.  When it becomes personal, it becomes dangerous.  People might actually figure out that you dont have it all together.

We all fool ourselves into believing that we are the only one who has destructive habits, a past full of regrets, and flaws they cannot correct. The truth is everyone is crazy and we all need people to keep our craziness in check. Living authentically means being vulnerable and transparent. Before you begin the journey with your one word, reflect on the individuals who can come alongside you and encourage your growth.

  • Would you say you are known inside of community? Who are the people that have come along side you in your pursuit of living out your One Word?

Lets explore this idea that community plays a critical role in our effort to reflect Christs heart. Community is something we desire, but at the same time fear. Wed love to hear your response to the following question: What compels you to share what Christ is doing in your life? What holds you back?

  • Teresa

    I want the world to know how being obeident to God’s word can and has changed my life. I was separated from our youngest daughter for eleven years. My pride wouldn’t allow me to give in and apologize to her. But God worked in my heart and asked me to be obedient to His word. I prayed with my church family, I studied His word and I finally got on my face and surrendered my pride.God granted me a second chance with my daughter. I have held her and apologized , I have told her that I love her. And you know , it wasn’t hard to do! When we ask to see someone else through HIS loving eyes, we see more clearly! Thank you Lord for your love and faithfulness to me. I will be faithful to you.

  • I am compelled to share what Christ is doing in life with people whom I know appreciate the amazing thing Jesus does in our lives. I am always excited when I get through a valley and have reached the top again where I can see the wonderful results of those valley’s. The thing that holds me back from sharing these things are a person who has made it known that they don’t want to hear things like this. Around these types of people I have to “hold back my joy and excitement” over what Jesus is doing in my life.

  • Vanessa

    I want the world to know what an awesome God we serve! I want them all to have the PEACE and JOY that only comes from having a personal relationship with our Lord, Jesus Christ. I feel the best way to share this is to be a shining example of what God wants each of us to be; to exude love and kindness even when someone or some situation is “prickly!” All the talk in the world isn’t going to convince someone to change. Make them want what you have! Peace everyone!

  • Martha

    I’ve been following this project since the very first day, but wasn’t sure about my one word. And, as usual, ater thinking and rethinking over and over, like I always do in almost every aspect of my life, I came to the word that God wants me to work on. “DETERMINED” I want to be determined to forgive myself from past failures and present mistakes. I want to be determined to let go of those thoughts and prejudices that are holding me back from moving forward into a deeper relationship with God. And, determined to give control of my life to God; determined to shine, determined to serve, determined to love, and determined to be obedient to his call.

  • Kim

    I am so grateful for this challenge! It has propelled me to deep soul searching, toiling and agonizing! I have been in His Word and praying for the right Word! Even today’s message on the blog made me second think the “word” I was close to choosing, which was “restoration” . I know that through this devine guidance I will choose to make the right changes this year! In His love to you all!!! Keep pushing ahead! HE is doing a Great work in You and me!

  • Lauren

    A renewed outlook in life makes me want to share what God is doing in my life and what he is capable of. Thinking and knowing he knows what he is doing and that I should not question or fight that makes me enjoy my life so much more.
    What holds me back from telling everyone and anyone is actually 2 things…1. The only people I care to share with are my family and I’m the only one who has a focused dedication to a journey with God. They basically don’t listen, so I don’t share with them. and 2.It’s what is inside of my heart, how I feel, and how my own life is going that is more important to me than how everyone else views it. So I tend to be a bit of a hermit or just kept to myself and quiet but I hope that when I’m out and about, my smile and happiness will exude enough to tell the world enough. 🙂

  • Colleen

    I want to share what Christ is doing because I want people to know the truth behind the change. Actually, FIRST I want them to see a change and THEN I want them to know it’s not me, it’s God.
    What holds me back is mainly I don’t know where most of the people in my life stand with God. I do know a few don’t stand with him at all. It’s really hard to talk about God and the things he’s doing in my life without seeming pushy about him or risking offending anyone.

    When I was growing up you were able to speak freely about God, It was more than ok to say Merry Christmas. There was never that “Oh am I offending someone” feeling. People use to respect our beliefs even if they didn’t agree or understand them. Now you have to watch what you say.

    It’s getting harder and harder to share Christ with a world who doesn’t want to listen and yet there is so much confusion about the tragedies of the world. When will people finally get the connection.

  • Christina F

    The thing that compels me to share what Christ is doing and how he has changed me is that He will do the same for others (saved or unsaved). I want all to hear how he has changed and is changing me. I love sharing the story how I ended up picking my one word. But the one thing that I am slow to share is how HARD it is right now. I recently have felt soooo far from Him, and yet I have been in the word and seeking His face with my all. So I finally asked Him “why do you seem so far from me?” I have found that there are things that he is trying to work in me. Forgiveness is one of them.

    I have anger inside towards situations and toward certain people that I know that I need to give to Him. I am finding that in my heart if I give it up then I will have peace and I will draw close to Him. But, also if I forgive then that means that I am vulnerable all over again for disappointment.

    Jesus does say that in order to be forgiven, we need to forgive and these past few weeks it makes sense. He isn’t trying to punish me, but encouraging me to do the right thing so that he can have that relationship with me that He longs for and what I long for as well.

  • Terri

    It is easy to list the things that hold me back from sharing His story, I fear rejection and ridicule. Yet the things that make it easy are when others are open to hearing the stories. I am getting better at sharing His story and in so doing His love.

  • Doug Marriott

    I get excited at the prospect of sharing the message of Christ with others. I used to fear what others would think when I started talking about him, but I have come to realize, over the last few years, that God gives me the strength and the knowledge to talk, at just the right time to talk. Let him guide you and the fear factor just fades away.

  • Sarah

    Right now, where I am in my faith, I share the blessings and messages Christ shows me with my children, my husband and my close friends. I was raised in a family where actions speak louder than words, and so its hard for me to verbally share with others the word and works of Christ and God, but I feel that if I can show them in my actions and my attitudes and my behaviors than that is where I can start and work towards a more open approach.

  • Eric

    I don’t have a problem with sharing my story with people who have already began a realtionship with Christ. My problem is with sharing with people who don’t know Christ. There is nothing that I would rather do than to share. My fear is not being able to answer their questions or giving false information. I guess it would be like me giving tax informatin out. I know nothing about that. I know sharing the gospel is what we are supposed to do. Anyone know how I can get past that?