Bump the TrajectoryJanuary 11, 2024
The Short GameJanuary 24, 2024
Where will you be in five years – what age? When I write my age down it is a tad sobering. And even more sobering is the question Andy Stanley poses: “Is where you are going where you want to be when you get there?” And he goes on to say, “Direction, not intention, determines destination.”
To start this year, I am looking out five years and then circling back to now, so that I can be certain where I am going is indeed where I want to be when I get there. I am not formulating a five-year plan because that plan would be my plan. I want the plan to be Jesus’ plan, not mine. Please, not mine.
And yet, taking an assessment of my current direction is both prudent and responsible. So let’s start with a little-noticed passage in Colossians, that gives us a guideline to our best destination:
“… so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way:
bearing fruit in every good work,
growing in the knowledge of God,
11being strengthened with all power
great endurance and patience,
12and giving joyful thanks to the Father …
I hope you agree that to “live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way” is the path to the A+ Life to the Full. We are then given step-by-step directions for that destination:
- “Bearing fruit in every good work:” Are you? Are you even the slightest bit focused on investing in others’ lives? When you are interacting with someone, is it all about “news, weather and sports,” or do you seek to plant a seed with some eternal value? One does not have to be an evangelist to plant seeds – at times, just a comment that may direct them towards Jesus, and a life of more meaning.
- “Growing in the knowledge – in the knowing – of God:” What would this look like? Certainly we might start with more, and slower, Bible reading and study. Perhaps add to that a little more prayer. Join a Bible study or a small group. I would add that an effective way to “growing in the knowing of God” is to start, “A conversational walk through life talking with Jesus about what we are doing together.” (Dallas Willard) That will change everything.
- “Being strengthened with all – Holy Spirit – power:” Learning to live with Holy Spirit power has radically changed my life. Leaning into and leaning onto the Holy Spirit will bump your trajectory like nothing else can. Start by asking the Holy Spirit to help you in any given situation – no matter how small or seemingly mundane. The Holy Spirit specializes in the small things – in the details of our lives. He delivers “Energy – Clarity – Creativity.” It will feel awkward and unnatural at first, but he is real, and he will respond.
- “Great endurance and patience:” Would anyone consider you to be a patient person? Argh! Only The Holy Spirit can deliver this state of the heart. And great endurance? When life is upside down, and things don’t seem to be changing or improving, continuing to find peace and patience through a resolute trust in Jesus will always be “pleasing to the Lord.”
- “And giving joyful thanks to the Father:” What a life! To be full of joy and thanking the Father throughout the day! This life of gratitude is a miracle drug. It truly is. And all it takes is reminding ourselves throughout the day of the many, many blessings in our lives, as well as the fact that a loving Heavenly Father loves us, forgives us, and is always for us.
Start today. Bump your trajectory by adding more focus, even if just a little, in these areas, because to “live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way” is the path to the A+ Life to the Full.