Grace. Weakness. Power.
Five Minute Friday is a weekly link-up I’ve participated in over the past couple years. When I work on a prompt it’s been a rewarding experience as it has helped me to grow in my writing before I had the courage to go public with a blog.
As I go to write for five minutes on “Motivate” this process feels fresh, new, and exciting. Writing for the world instead of an audience of one puts a whole different aspect to this I hadn’t experienced before. I’m quite excited to jump in!
Below is the definition of this weeks word. This practice of looking up definitions helps me to connect deeper with words. I do this all the time. Google probably thinks I’m illiterate because I’ll look up the most simple and basic word on the regular. I find it so fascinating the depth one word can go. (Another reason why I’m so passionate about choosing a word for a year!)
mo·ti·vate: Provide (someone) with a motive for doing something. Stimulate (someone's) interest in or enthusiasm for doing something.
Okay! Five minutes on the clock. Ready... Set... GO.
With starting my public pursuit of my blog this week, I’d thought Friday would be a great day to do a “Friday Introduction” as they like to call them in the Instagram world. Once I had that thought, the next thought popped into my head. Oh, what if I waited until the FMF prompt to see if I could tie that in and do that at the same time!
I woke up to my email with the prompt and running all the ideas through my head as quickly as possible it seemed like an easy task. I’m starting out on this blog journey to motivate, so they teed it right up for me!
I let this idea bounce around a little longer and went deeper into the word motivate attempting to get to the root of it. How am I motivated? Who or what motivates me? Why am I motivated? This simple practice of asking Who, What, Where, Why, always helps me to dig deeper into a word.
To no surprise, when I thought about those questions, my inadequacy rose to the surface. The inspiration and motivation to tackle this prompt with ease quickly met my insecurity. The shame of how I’ve fallen short to be motivated this week especially wants to disqualify me from having the ability to motivate anyone else.
So here I am at the end of five minutes looking to wrap this up in a neat little bow. However, I don't have it. I don't even know where the ribbon is. What I do have is Jesus. He is with me in my inadequacy encouraging me on in the exact words my soul needs.
So with my five minutes up, I didn't accomplish my introduction. As always God used my time to accomplished something greater. He opened my eyes to the fact He's building this new thing in me. I'm still trying to wrap my mind around it all. I don't want to run ahead of him and tell the world something that comes from me. I'm sure I can think of all the ways I want to motivate the world with all of my many passions in life. My proclivity will be to chase after those things instead of Jesus.
So as my introduction of how I want to use this blog, I feel God leading me to:
2 Corinthians 12:9-11 (CSB):
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is perfected in weakness.”
Therefore, I will most gladly boast all the more about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may reside in me. So I take pleasure in weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and in difficulties, for the sake of Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
After reading this verse, God's handed me the ribbon I didn't even know I had. I see three things he's calling me to and I want these to be what I use here to motivate others:
1) God's Grace.
This word I easily throw around not connecting with its power. I want my writing to be real, raw, and vulnerable. To walk this out, I'll need to apply the healing balm of grace over and over again. My perfectionist-self does not want to accept it, but motivate myself with shame. This breaks the Father's heart, and if I'm to walk this out in faithful obedience, it will be required.
God flipped the script on me here. When I've day-dream about having a blog, it's always contained all the things I'm passionate about, cooking, health, creating, reading, numbers, technology, you name it. My passion for these things run strong, and I chase after #allthethings. It would be so easy for me to share these, what I've learned and how I do them. My greatest fear would be to produce something like that, and then have others read it and immediately feel inadequate. I need to be reminded my posts must come from a place of weakness.
As John Piper says in a devotional titled: We Can Do Nothing:
In John 15:5, Jesus says, “Apart from me you can do nothing.” So we really are paralyzed. Without Christ, we are capable of no Christ-exalting good. As Paul says in Romans 7:18, “Nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh.”
God is so good; this word is so perfect. He knew exactly what I needed.
3) Christ's Power - Life/Death/Resurrection
This brings me to the last word, but it's the one that rises above them all. The Revelation Wellness REVVING workout this week was on exactly this. Using Christ's story to tell our story. While I may desire to inspire, stimulate, encourage, spur (on), excite, influence, it will add up to nothing if not fueled by Christ's power.
So there ya have it! My first Five Minute Friday of 2018 + a little extra of God fleshing this out with me for the world to see! Looking forward to sharing more in the days to come!