I’m learning about life. Not just sheltered high school or college life, but real life. Days filled with mounds of bills, health insurance, planning marriage, careers, stress…and the list is building.
Once I step back and take it all in I am realizing one thing.
You get life once. You get to be 16 once, 23 once, 30 once. So why waste it doing what you don’t absolutely love to do? Better yet, why are we wasting time doing things that God doesn’t want us to do?
Therefore, I’ve come to this conclusion. We can’t settle.
Now I’m not really talking about the kind of settling like we would do with finding a prom dress or even a grade in school, I’m talking about the life altering settling.
There are two major areas that we cannot afford to settle in; Our Beliefs & Our Dreams.
At many points in our lives we will come to a crossroads. The Devil will want us to compromise what we believe, and will do anything to get us to take one step off of the course Christ has laid for us. But we must hold strong. 2 Timothy 4:12 says, “Don’t let anyone think less of you because you are young. Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity.” Proverbs 4:26 says, “Mark out a straight path for your feet;stay on the safe path”. We must actively mark out our path, we must envision what beliefs and virtues we will stick to in our love, in our purity, in how we act and speak. It takes planning and commitment. One thing I used to teach my middle schoolers was that if you don’t decisively plan how you will react to opportunities and situations, you will have a greater chance of making the wrong decision in the heat of the moment. If you don’t plan to say no now, how will you ever say no in confrontational situations? Especially as the younger generation, we are called to be the examples of faith, to have our lives shine as believers committed to making a difference in this world.
Think today, what is it that you want to stick to? How do you really want to speak and act? How do you want to love and live in purity? If you don’t decide now…when will you decide, when it’s too late? Act now. Plan now. Determine your beliefs so that others don’t determine them for you.
God has a path for us, with so many blessings and opportunities that we cannot even fathom, but each time we take a step off of that path it we are really taking one step away from blessing and opportunity. To fully experience the greatness of life, we must fully engage our beliefs and completely commit to staying on that path.
The one thing I love about this generation is that often our hearts are bigger than life. We strive to make a greater impact, a deeper change and a better world. What I have learned is that we are given our dreams and passions for a reason. We love what we love because God wants so badly to use each of our individual gifts and passions to conquer this world for His glory. It is when we let our dreams become deferred, pushed to the side and stomped on, or even ignored we are directly hindering the movement that Christ is making.
There will be times when our dreams seem impossible, intangible, unrealistic and simply too big for us. That’s the beauty of having God in your corner. Your dreams are too big for you…but they are never too big for the almighty, all powerful God.
As soon as we take ourselves out of the center of our plans and place the focus and foundation on Christ, nothing will be able to hinder us from pursuing God’s will. Criticism and backlash will come, but nothing will be able to shake the stance that you have placed on the secure foundation of God, because he is our center and our core.
This is the time of year when students are challenged by new opportunities. Some will be moving up to High School, others to College and some to the real world. This is your time. My desire for you is that you would not settle in life. Do not compromise your beliefs for a momentary gain; the only thing in this world that is secure and never changing is Christ, so center it all around him. Follow the dreams and passions that Christ has placed in you. They are there for a reason….follow what God is calling you to do.
And those of us that are in the real world. It still isn’t too late to not settle. Even if you have been settling, compromising on what you believe and dream; it is not too late to start today. Today could be the day when your life begins; when you actively pursue that burning passion in you that has been suppressed for so long. Let it explode. Let Christ explode through you. This world desperately needs your gifts and passions. Do not let compromised beliefs or desires hold you back. Step back on the path and get your feet movin’.
From this point forward, Do Not Settle.