Do you tend to thrive in life, regardless of your circumstances? Or are you easily swayed by events and situations that occur? Does life happen to you? Or do you find value in everything that comes your way?
The truth is, most of us spend too much of life wallowing in survival mode. We remain mired in mediocrity. We barely get by emotionally, physically, mentally and spiritually. “I’ll Be There for You,” The Friends’ theme, sung by The Rembrandts, calls this phenomenon being “stuck in second gear.” But God never intended it to be that way. Regardless of what’s going on in our lives, He created us to live victoriously, to experience joy in the journey. Not just when we arrive at the final destination.
Consider what the apostle John has to say in 1 John 5:4: “For everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith” (NIV). The Lord desires that joy, that victory for us. And he’s done his part to accomplish that. But we have to show up as well. We have to accept what he offers. We must:
- Learn to let go and let God. (Oh how I struggle with this.)
- Relinquish control. (Really? But I’m so good at it.)
- Declare our dependence. (On Someone other than myself? I may actually be the second person to sweat droplets of blood.)
But come on—admit it. Don’t you want to be a thriver? (By the way, thriver rhymes with diver, not river. Unless you’re British.) I hope you like my made-up word for people who thrive.
(Oops, I got off track again. I do that. But I’m OK with that because thrivers don’t mind taking detours. Rabbit trails provide me with fabulous favorite material. Plus, it’s not healthy to always be on a schedule.)
Anyway, basically, we need to remember daily that God knows everything about our lives and is capable of handling whatever comes our way. Contrary to popular belief, we don’t have to try harder—in fact, what we really need to do is stop trying altogether and give everything to God. We need to move away from Little Mom/Wife/Employee/Friend/Church Volunteer That Could reciting “I think I can, I think I can, I think I can,” like some self-help mumbo jumbo.
Each month—in this “On Thriving” column—we’ll identify ways to do just that. I hope you’ll share your best ideas.