Wednesday, January 27, 2010

We Are Works In Progress

Philippians 1:6

Being confident of this very thing, that He who hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.

I've been discouraged periodically about all of the dreams and goals that have yet to be realized as a writer.  Life gets in the way. I see my imperfections and struggle with self-worth. Missing the mark can make a goal-oriented person feel like a failure.

 In reflection, I have discovered that sometimes I set the mark too high. Other times, I don't work hard enough at the goals but allow distractions to deter me. I'm the stereotypical moody writer, who thinks she can publish a library one day and another day, fills the trash can with crumpled paper.  I don't want to feel like I'm not accomplishing my goals.

I asked the Lord for a Word on which to stand. He gave me the above passage. It was an immense comfort. Here's why:

I am not perfect. I fail. Failure reveals my humanity and somehow, in that state, I see the steadfastness of God. Jesus, the Perfect One, is performing a good work in me--to sanctify, to cleanse, to save, to make whole and to enable for service. He began that work in me and He will not quit working until I am perfect in Him.  When He returns to take me to Heaven and gives me a heavenly body which will no longer struggle with weakness and imperfection, then all my earthly expectations will fade and I will know what was His perfect will for my life and hopefully, hear Him say, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant. Enter into the joy of thy Lord."  All the rest won't matter any more.  In order to hear that I need to finish what He called me to.

He  finishes EVERYTHING He starts and that good work in us  that only He does is a work in progress with many stops and starts. I think it's because we are sometimes like the characters in our books or stories that try to make suggestions to the Author. Our suggestions are one dimensional just as our characters can't know what each other are up to but must discover through the plot where they all fit in the story. It is the Author that keeps everything straight and makes the story turn out right. The characters think they would die in the process worrying about their struggles if the Author didn't have it under control.   How amazing is that!

With that in mind, I look at my plans. I'm only one character in the story God is writing of my life. I can't see ahead or how God is going to use every detail of the story to accomplish the plot. I think I'm just going to die of heartache or exhaustion at times when my dreams aren't working out as I'd desire.  Hearing Philippians 1:6 reminded me once again to trust the Author. He is at work on my life. I am a work in progress.So are you.

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