The Short View

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I’ve been reading a great book about facing and conquering the giants in our lives (Goliath Must Fall, by Louie Giglio). It’s been a great way to start the new year, dealing with some of the biggest oppositional forces we encounter. As much healing as I’ve been graced with, I honestly didn’t expect to find so many towering giants still looming over my life. But in His goodness, God has used this book to expose some things that, while giants by nature, have managed to disguise themselves as comfortable and familiar friends. The giants that have stood against me are being confronted, and I am truly thankful, and looking forward to the breakthroughs God has reserved for me.

Beyond those breakthroughs, however, I am rediscovering something else God has reserved for me. As I look at the giants that have worked their way into the valleys of my life, I’m realizing that they have managed to hijack my vision, more than I’d like to admit. I have focused much on fighting through obstacles, often unaware (and unable to care) where they’re coming from. And in that process of being immersed in what seems like constant struggle (always aiming at getting through it), I’ve missed the short view – the stark reality that time is winding down.

Uphill battles tend to place a demand on all of our resources and faculties. But when everything is engaged in surviving, we forget that God has placed a demand on our whole lives. For us, overcoming the giant is the goal. For God, what’s on the other side of the giant is the real goal.

It seems that lately, I have been surrounded on all sides by death. No doubt, death without a sting, but nevertheless a clear and definitive point of transition. As it does for most people, death causes me to question a lot of things, chiefly whether or not I will be ready to go when it’s my turn.

Will I have done all that I was created to do? Will I have given my best and highest, for God’s glory and the benefit of those who are coming behind me? Will I have the freedom to speak life to those who come to say goodbye, or will I be consumed with regret about all that is being left unfinished?

The giants in our lives (fear, rejection, comfort, anger, and addiction to name a few) exist to keep us from fulfilling and realizing all that God has called us to and promised. The short view looks across the valleys of life, where the giants are looming ominously, and sees a greater fight than the one they put up. Yes, they’re big and scary and powerful. But more scary, more powerful, and a much bigger threat is the possibility that we can die without reaching the other side. We can get caught up and weary in the scuffle with our giants, and lose sight of the real battle. There is a work to be accomplished in our days, and we can fail to live out the destiny we have been entrusted with. Of course, no one likes to think about the possibility of failure, but if we don’t, we are in danger of putting off what must be taken head-on.

Most people look at a new year and see lots of new time ahead of them. As I enter this new year, I’m seeing a countdown instead. I see time that is diminishing, rather than increasing. And that makes dealing with my giants – and anything else that gets in the way of fulfilling my life’s purpose – an immediate and uncompromisable assignment.

I don’t mean to put a damper on anyone’s dreams and visions. In fact, I hope to light a fire under them. The reality of the short view is that we are daily growing closer and closer to one of two things: our transition out of this life and into the next, or the glorious return of Jesus. Whichever comes first, don’t you want to be able to enter into rest knowing that you finished your race and completed your assignments well?

Dear Woman of Breakthrough, don’t measure your life’s work by the moments you are not promised. Measure them by the ones you have in front of you right now. Prioritize what God has given you to do this year, and work with all of your heart to see it accomplished, with His help and by His grace. I have the strong sense that time is a resource we can’t afford to waste.

I heard someone say this week that how old we are is not determined by our age, but by the age at which we die. If we die at 80 and we’re in our 40s, we are still fairly young. But if we die in our 50s and are in our 40s, we are in the crowning years of our lives. That’s a sobering thought, isn’t it? Even more sobering is that you and I don’t really know how old we are. We don’t know when our time will be up. All we know is that we have a destiny to fulfill, and time is indeed running out, so we need to make the most of every day we are given.

God has placed each of us here for a specific purpose. Most of us instinctively know this. Some of us are chasing, or have chased, our purpose with great intention and passion. Many of us, however, also know what it’s like to get distracted by the giants/obstacles in our path, and resign ourselves to just fighting through each day or season. Many of us, if we are honest with ourselves, have allowed the giant(s) in our lives to command so much of our focus that we’ve lost sight of the real, heavenly vision we have been called to.

God’s vision for our lives does not consist of us just killing giants. We are called to extend and establish His rule in a particular area of life. Like David after Goliath, we are called to be God’s representatives in the territory assigned to us – whatever that might be. We have been appointed to build His Kingdom on earth, and we can’t do that if we’re caught up in the scuffle on a battlefield that was only meant to be momentary. Yes, there are giants and obstacles to face, but those giants and obstacles have already been disempowered and overcome by the real Giant-killer, Jesus. So the battles we face, as we pursue our God-given destinies, are victories-in-the-making, breakthroughs pre-appointed in the journey.

Beloved one, may you be awakened to see the short view that time is of the utmost importance, and may you face your giants with destiny revived in your sights – knowing it beckons you from the battlefield. Whatever you may be facing or dealing with, may you be stirred in your spirit to realize that you have a work to do that has been given by the God Who fashioned the world and placed you in it so that you could make a difference and point others to Him.

Face your giants. Push through your obstacles. Determine, because God has determined, that you will meet the demand He has placed on your life. Do the work He has reserved for you. No matter what comes against you, dare to reach and dare to rise and dare to defy every oppositional force you meet with. Because it’s not really about the giants at all. It’s about the God Who is so much bigger than all of them. It’s about the incredible purpose He has created you for, so that others will see and know the goodness of His love.

{Photo images courtesy of http://www.pixabay.com}

 

 


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