So… I saw Bad Moms, and I laughed.

In case you don’t have any clue what movie I am talking about, here is a promo shot:

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First, I’d like to admit right out of the gate I didn’t walk into this movie with naive expectations.  The trailers gave a pretty good indication that there would be some inappropriate humor.  Second, I am not planning on giving away any spoilers.  There were definitely some parts I thought the movie could have lived without, not only for the story line but even in the presentation.  Sometimes it could go too far.  Third, there were some parts of this that were REALLY unrealistic when you are talking about any group of moms.  Lastly, there were also a LOT of truths.

Overall, I laughed and I laughed hard.  At one point I laughed so hard (as I was taking a sip from my straw) that I pushed air through the straw, which caused a small tidal wave in my cup, and that resulted in my drink landing in my eyes.  Which just caused a whole other fit of laughter for myself and those sitting around me.  I laughed until I cried and my stomach hurt.  Yet, there were some moments that I nodded in solidarity.  There were moments that were uncomfortable.  And, yes… as I said before totally unnecessary.

What I want to write about (and I’m up for conversation too) is WHY a movie like this not only resonated with moms but was drawing us in like moths to a flame.

My first thought is probably the most obvious, there is an enormous amount of pressure on moms to be it all, do it all, and do so perfectly.  Whether it is the perfect birthday party, bento box lunches, or simply making it to every school and sport activity… we feel the pressure.  We notice so much of what is around us, like the mom who has the perfect hair and make up in the parent pick up line… when we were struggling to get out of the house with a bra under our pajama shirt.  We see the kids with the perfectly styled hair, accessories, and sparkling white sneakers…. and we just spent the last 40 minutes looking for eyeglasses or a belt.  Other moms dropping their kids off early, and we are 10 minutes late because we had to go back home and pick up the flute that was left behind… or because our darling child took 15 minutes to brush her teeth.

How do these moms do it?  We cast shade in their direction, but really we are asking ourselves… why can’t I do it?

I think there are a number of moms who have run the scenario through their head of just saying no.  No to the requests by the husband, kids, school, coaches, etc.  An opportunity to just walk away from the pressure and enjoy life again.  To make the choice of not being the perfect mom anymore, and instead be the bad mom.

This brings me to my second thought, as you watch the trailers you see a group of women having fun. We are not talking bunko party fundraiser fun, but the kind of fun we had as teenagers  and young single adults.  The fun we had when we didn’t care what others thought, where it was ok to be silly, and there was an expected freedom in the general knowledge we were going to make mistakes and bad choices.  It takes us back to a time when we didn’t have to be an adult, and could just let loose and be free.

With motherhood came some sort of unwritten code of conduct, that we couldn’t be silly anymore.  We began to take everything too seriously, including ourselves.  Let’s face it, books and the advice of television “experts” reinforced this.  Reminding us over and over again that it was time to grow up, put away childish things, and get our heads out of the clouds.  As we did this, many of us sent fun sailing away for good.  We stopped smiling, we stopped laughing, and we stopped being silly.

The movie Bad Moms called out to that free spirit inside of us, that desperately wanted to laugh… and laugh hard.  So, it pulls out all the stops.  The women let loose in a way we couldn’t, and we live vicariously through them.  They say the things that roll through our minds & do the things we secretly wished we could.  (Ok, maybe not all of the things they say and do, but you get the point).

I also believe this appeals to Christian women so deeply because of the bar that is set for our expected behavior.  If other moms are feeling the pressure to be perfect in their every day life, Christian moms understand the additional expectations put on the Christian mom.  To have perfect children that love Jesus, quote the bible, volunteer with the elderly, and gladly donate all their birthday money to the missions fund.  To be women who are serious about the study of the Lord, leading small groups, inviting women over to mentor and pray together, to dress in simple clothes, and be ever diligent in our choices of entertainment.  There is a pressure that all of our time should be so seriously focused on Christ, that we can’t let loose and laugh until our sides hurt.

Confession… I saw the movie on opening night.  It’s taken me almost a month to admit I saw it, because frankly… I expected to be judged for it.  I was worried about what my church friends, my readers that look to me for wisdom, the women or leaders who are reading through my blog trying to decide if I would be the right speaker for their next women’s event… what would these people think of me?

I learned something from the movie though… my eyes were opened to how long it had been since I had laughed so much and so hard.  I realized how seriously I take myself and made the decision not to.  I embraced that silliness is okay and even healthy for my kids to see.  I made the decision that I wanted to laugh more, but with those whom I am the closest to… not a theater full of strangers.  I want that girl posse who has my back, in the most biblical way possible… and who will be silly with me.  Women who know how to laugh, smile, and stop trying to be something that is impossible to attain… perfect.

All of those parts of the movie that I thought were unnecessary, they don’t have to be part of my life.  But the good stuff… I welcome it.  We are all GOOD MOMS despite our imperfections and the times we muck things up… because we are LOVING MOMS.  In the end that is what matters.  The Lord didn’t call us to a life of misery, but of fulfillment and joy as mothers… and laughter.  So much laughter.

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Applied Biblical Theory

When I was in college, you had the opportunity to take classes like “Applied Mathematics” and “Applied Life Sciences”, and there was even one that was “Applied Ethics” that was custom tailored to your degree track.  The point of these classes was to take the skills you had learned over the course of your education and put them to us in the every day life.

Today, I had a lesson in “Applied Biblical Theory”.  This, is Mabel:

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Easter weekend, our old fridge completely died.  This was by far our most expensive Easter ever, as we shopped to find the replacement.  When the fridge arrived, my youngest daughter promptly named it Mabel.  And, it was so.

Unfortunately for all of us, Mabel included, after a couple of weeks the ice maker would not longer dispense ice.  For those who don’t know us well, my husband’s work schedule can vary from week to week, and we rarely know his days off too far in advance.  On my side of the scheduling, having three kids in three schools can make it really hard for me to be home during the “service window”.  Additionally, my husband and I both thrive, expect, and deliver efficiency in whatever we do.

Knowing all of this, we put the effort forth in diagnosing the problem ourselves.  After working together on examining the functions of the freezer, and then doing some internet research in tandem… we hit gold.  The auger motor was broken, that is what needed to be replaced or repaired at minimum.  He took a day off from work, we scheduled the service, and we very clearly stated that the issue was the auger motor and it could possibly need replacement.  Having the diagnosis and the prescription for the fix, from our view point, ensured that the repairman would arrive with all the parts in hand.  Our freezer would be fixed that day, and everyone could go on their merry way.  Our repair window was 9am to 12pm.

At 8am, our doorbell rings… which is right in the midst of our morning school routine. The repairman was here a total of thirty minutes.  No freezer repaired, no ice dispensing.   He came in, poked around the freezer and affirmed the part we suspected was broken.  However he didn’t have one on the truck, would have to order the part, and would be back on Saturday.  Saturday, when I already have plans.  Which put my husband in the position to either ask me to cancel our mother’s day plans – or – to take another day off of work so that he could be home for it.

I’m not going to lie to anyone, I was pretty angry.  From both of our perspectives, there was no reason for the repairman to arrive without the part needed.  Fortunately for him, he was dealing with my husband and not me at that point.  In fact, if there are customer service issues to deal with … usually hubby sicks me on the company.  I wouldn’t have been as kind… and it probably would have resulted in this guy finding the part somewhere and returning today.  But, I digress.

As I was mulling this over in my mind, after the repairman left and my temper began to cool, a thought struck me…

Is this not exactly what our relationship with God is like?

God hands us a book, full of His Word.  The book diagnoses our problems, and then prescribes the correct part to fix it.  You can use the index at the back of most bible to look up words like “anger”, “jealousy”, “adultery”, “gossip”, etc… and read the specific details of that sin when it is the broken part in us.  His Word is faithful to not leave us in our guilt and shame, but to make a way for us out of that brokenness.  God sent his Son, telling us: THIS IS THE PART YOU NEED TO BE WHOLE!

How many times do we show up to life without the one part that can repair, restore, and reconcile us… to each other, to Him?

We may try to fix the sin in our lives with our own means, lacking the tools He has given us.  We may choose to fix this in our lives on another day, because we are not prepared to do it on this day.  Or, we just don’t want to.  We may not trust that God knows how to handle this problem and seek the counsel of others until someone else gives us the answer we want to hear.

And so we show up on Sunday, to God’s house… but we are lacking the right parts.  We forget to bring:

On Teens and Social Media…. What I’ve Learned

MBA

When you read an article about teenagers, phones, and social media… the above picture is probably similar to what has accompanied the articles. This is what we see from an adult perspective.  Kids who have their noses deep in their phones, ignoring each other, even when in a group of the peers.

This is what the media tells us is wrong with society today.  But, I wonder… who are these experts and where did they come up with their findings or opinions?  Are we just adults who don’t understand the technology?  We don’t get it, so it is wrong?  Have any of these people spent time talking to teens about WHY their phones are so important?

Somehow, even people in my generation, have this nostalgic idea of what family was like or should be like.  We envision the days of past, where everyone was gathered around the television or radio.  Doing family together.

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The reality is that even back then, people had their noses buried in things.  The people and their tendencies haven’t changed, just the vessels that have their attention.

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Our faces were buried in newspapers and books, jump further in time and we were listening to the news on portable radios with headphones.  Then we were listening to music and reading magazines.  Kids began to have toys that were kept in the car to entertain them while driving on long trips, this eventually evolved in to DVD players built into our vehicles.

Is it really anything new?

familylivingroom

Even the idea that families were totally engaged at home, is a bit of a stretch.  It was common for dad to sit in his chair and read the paper or take a nap on the couch.  Mother would be sitting in her chair knitting or working on cross stitch, repairing buttons and socks, reading magazines that interested her, etc. Kids would play games with each other, play with the dog, color with crayons, build with blocks, or even were sent out side until the street lights came on.

Many of us live the idea of a nostalgia that really didn’t exist.

If you spend a few minutes talking to a teen you learn quite a bit about WHY social media and their phones are so important to their lives.

  1. They are BORED or UNCOMFORTABLE, it’s the thing they do with free time or in situations where they are uncertain how to engage.
  2. This is how they CONNECT.   Even when they can’t be with their friends, they can bond over the experiences of shared photos and excitement.
  3.  This is PARALLEL to the things we did as a kid.  Texts = Passing Notes, Selfies = Exchanging School Photos.  Apps allow them to doodle, write or read stories, or be just as silly as we were when we used 8008 on our calculators to spell out the word BOOB.

You will also learn some other interesting things like…

They grow out of it.   My teen was big into her phone in middle and early years of high school.  Now?  She barely uses it, can leave it behind in her room and not think twice about it.  Why?

She has a boyfriend.  Her school work is harder.  She has a job.  She has money to spend = places to go.   She just doesn’t have time for the nonsense.

We spoke about this last night and my daughter said that she hasn’t used Twitter in well over a year.  She only texts about 3 people (outside of her parents).  She only uses instagram for her hobby (she collects disney pins, and there is a LOT of that happening on instagram).  She only goes on facebook to keep in touch with 2 friends who are long distance, and our long distance family members.

I asked her if this was just a change for her, or if it was common among the kids in her grade, and she emphatically said it was most of the upperclassmen.

So, that posed a few questions.

Q:  When kids are at the table, nose in the phone, what’s the deal?

A:  They are bored.  You are talking about things we either shouldn’t be listening to, or we don’t know anything about.  It’s not interesting or we just don’t know how to participate in the conversation.  So, we read.

Q:  Then how do parents get their kids to engage in the conversation?

A:  Parents need to engage their kids, don’t just demand they put the phone down and talk.  Instead parents need to talk about the things that their kids are interested in.  Talk with them, not at them.

Q:  What about all of these apps and things that kids are using?

A:  Totally be aware of what your kids are doing, keep up on it.  And be apart of that life, text your kids, sit down and share videos and pictures with each other.  Try to understand the appeal for yourself.

Q:  Kids are spending a LOT of time on their phones, parents don’t like this.  What do we do about it?

A:  Most of it is boredom, so don’t freak out about it.  Instead do stuff with them, giving them something to do other than the phone… and that doesn’t mean “clean your room”.    Go places that interest them, encourage hobbies that are off the phone, give them money to go hang out with their friends, be willing to drive them, etc. 

My daughter really believes that as our kids begin to have a more active life, the phones will minimize.  However, that doesn’t mean we let our kids forget how to be present.  We can’t expect it, but we model it and teach it.  When my kids see that when I am with them that I ignore phone calls, texts and notifications… they are learning presence.  When they see me give their father that same attention, they learn how to be present with their future spouse too.

We just can’t forget that social media also allows our kids to have presence in the lives in their friends as they celebrate exciting things with them, or console them when they are down.    Just like anything, social media is just a tool.  We must shape the heart of the user.

 

 

#Write31Days – Post 17 – Difficult People

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Dot was an ornery woman.  I had just transferred work locations,  and I was being given the tour.  Introductions to the staff, learning where everything was located, etc.  When I was introduced to Dot, that was the description whispered to me as we approached her.  She was an older woman, who had been with the company since it’s inception.  Her employee number was a single digit (mine was over 7 digits long).   I realized quickly that she was someone who should have retired a long time ago.  She smiled at me as we were introduced, but quickly that smile turned to a scowl as she barked orders at a fellow employee who had passed by.

Ornery indeed.

The thing about me is that I see people like this as a challenge.  In that moment where her smile turned to a scowl, the challenge was issued… and I accepted.

For the next year, I poked that bear every single day.  I was going to make her smile, I was going to make her laugh.  She was going to like me, and I was going to like her.

I learned a lot about Dot.  I learned that she was married and had a son.  I learned that her husband went in for routine surgery, and died.  About two years later, the same happened with her son.

Dot was alone.  Dot was still grieving.  Dot was angry with God.

This would culminate into a woman who was very, very difficult.  She wasn’t pleasant to be around.   To be brutally honest, she was MEAN.  She wasn’t respectful to others, no one wanted to be around her, and she made life difficult for every employee in that building.  Despite her attitude toward others, the more we unraveled about her … the more compassion and empathy people had toward her.  It took one person willing to invest some time in trying to break through her wall, to understand who she was and what she had gone through.  The softer their hearts grew toward her, the more she began to let her guard down.  She was starting to smile more, and then began to laugh… a lot.

It first revealed itself when she fainted during a morning meeting, and she was able to see the concern that everyone had for her.  It was several of the men on staff that insisted she leave with the paramedics, and one even followed her to the hospital.  Several years later, Dot was waiting for the building to open and she was brutally assaulted when a man robbed her.  The staff surrounded her during her recovery and sat with her during the trial.  Due to the injuries she sustained and her age, she was unable to return to work.  That didn’t keep the staff from rallying around her until the day she passed away.

Dot was a difficult person.  She was raised to be tough.  Circumstances made her hard.

What I have observed over, and over again, is that people who are difficult are rarely so for no good reason.  Something has happened in their life that has shaped who they have become.  It could be a result of childhood trauma, abuse & mistreatment, discrimination, suffering, or even just a culmination of smaller difficulties in their life.

When dealing with difficult people, my first response is always:

If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men.

Romans 12:18

In order to do so, I remind myself that there is a reason why they are such difficult people.  I would rather assume that, then accept that they are choosing to intentionally behave this way.

I will always be nice & respectful, regardless of how mean or disrespectful they are to me.

I will give the benefit of the doubt, instead of assuming the worst, about them as a person.

There will be times, however, where no matter how nice we are … the person is bent on being difficult, angry, mean, hateful, etc.

  • Limit Time :  You do not have to spend every waking hour with this person.  Limit your time around them to only the occasions where you must be present.  Get your task done quickly, and leave.  Also, avoid giving them presence in your head once you are not around them.  Do not spend a moment thinking about their negativity, or replaying that day’s encounter.
  • Pray Regularly:  If we are going to assume that there is a reason they have turned out the way they are, then we ought to be praying for them.  Choosing to pray for someone who is difficult is different than replaying that day’s encounter.  Praying for them is a positive action, that comes from a place of love and compassion for God’s creation.  We can pray for a person while creating boundaries that keep ourselves emotionally & mentally healthy. 
  • Involve Authority:  I am not suggesting that you call the cops on someone who is just being cranky all the time.  However if you must work or serve with this person, and their attitude is creating problems in your workplace or in the ministry… involve your manager at work, or your leader/Pastor if it is within the ministry service. 

Some practical advice for the every day:

  1. Keep your answers short, sweet, and too the point.   Answer their questions, assign their task, and move on.  You can be polite, respectful, and even nice without engaging in their negativity.
  2. Purposefully go out of your way to do something nice for them, even if they don’t deserve it.  This doesn’t have to be an every day thing, but a simple pat on the back for doing a good job, a card on their birthday, etc. are small gestures that can mean a lot.
  3. Do not feed their attitude by being exclusionary.  If your team is going out to dinner, you invite the person.  They are part of the team, it is the right thing to do.  Let the difficult person decided if they are going to come or not.

If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat; And if he is thirsty, give him water to drink;  For you will heap burning coals on his head, And the LORD will reward you

Proverbs 25:21-22

In the verse from Proverbs above, I am reminded that when I am good to a person who is my enemy… it affects them.  It may even convict them of their poor attitude toward/about me.  When we are nice to those who don’t deserve it, it softens their hearts.  That process can take a very, very long time and will require copious amounts of divinely given patience.

God has loved us far more than we deserve, shouldn’t we at least, in kind, love His children (our brothers and sisters in Christ) in the same way?

Christ, at the crucifixion, even prayed for God to “forgive them, they know not what they do”.   His love and compassion fell on the heads of those who drove in the nails.

What right then do we have to be angry with those who we view as enemies? Or, to mistreat those who are being difficult to get along with?  Are we being Christ-like in how we respond to them?  Are we following the scriptures?  Or, are we giving into our flesh?

Keep in mind, however, that the heart of our intentions will also be revealed.  If we are being nice as a show to others, we are not being sincere.  If we are being nice to make the person feel guilty or convicted, we are not being sincere.  At some point that insincerity will be revealed to those around us.  Others will know it was just a show, not authentic.  It won’t change that difficult person, it will damage our relationship with others, and it will ultimately have a negative affect within ourselves.

When we respond in kindness to difficult people with sincerity, we are being Christ-like, we are being obedient, and we are being genuine.  Over the long term, it will have a positive affect on those around us, including our own selves.

#Write31Days – Post 15 – Memorizing the Scriptures

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My small group for this fall is all about Bible Literacy, we are half way through our book.  I think we all have grasped the importance of not just reading the Bible, but studying it.  We are learning study tools so that we can read with purpose, perspective, patience, process, and prayer.  We have grasped that reading a piece of scripture just once isn’t sufficient, and reading it in context is responsible.

At the beginning of the small group sessions, I asked all of the women to write down WHY they were interested in learning how to study the Bible.  An older woman in the group shared that she was looking for a better way to retain what she was reading.  Age and illness have taken a toll.  Years of Bible Studies, personal reading, etc… and she just couldn’t hold onto to the information.  She was hoping that learning new study skills would help her retain the scriptures she loved.

Confession Time:

I think most of us struggle with memorizing scripture. 

It takes time, effort, and practice.  Most of us find that our time is pretty divided between work, family, volunteering, etc.  We have also lost the need for scripture memorization, particularly in the United States.  In my own home I have access to NINE translations of the Bible in PRINT.  If you include the access I have through the internet, I literally have access to every translation written to date.  It costs me nothing.

Historically, people would memorize scripture because they were relaying the scriptures from memory… there were not written Bibles.  Later, as the scriptures were recorded on scrolls, the scrolls would be passed around from city to city.  It was quite possible that no single city would have the complete collection of the scriptures all at one time.  In other countries, having a printed copy of the scriptures might get you executed.  For these people memorization is their only option.

However, for you and I… it’s a quick click of some keys, or a short walk to our bookshelf.

We don’t NEED to memorize it, because we have instantaneous access to it… any time we want.

For my friend who is aging, this is a relief.

Yet, for those of us who want to memorize scripture (in part, or in whole) it is a daunting task.   Here are a few tips for helping you memorize scripture.

  • Select scriptures that are meaningful to you, at least to start with.  They may be encouraging scriptures that get you through rough times.  Or, pieces of beautiful poetry that remind you of the glory of God.  They may be promises or scriptures of wisdom.  Having a connection to the scripture will give you the motivation needed to memorize.
  • Write out the scripture several times by hand, for some learning styles this is an active way to cement the scriptures to memory.  For others they may need to repeat the scripture out loud, many times like a drill, in order to recall it from memory.  Or, come up with a mnemonic device to assist with memory recall…. such as hand gestures, putting it to a tune or rhythm.
  • Write the scripture down on a card, and display it in an area you frequent often.    Such places may be your bathroom mirror, on your front door, the dashboard of your car, or in your planner.   Keep it there until you have memorized the scripture, then replace with a new one.
  • Try memorizing the scripture from a translation that is easier to recall.  A King James version can be difficult with the old english phrasing.  The NIV or ESV may be a lot easier because the language is more familiar.

Also make sure that you review scriptures you have already memorized often, to ensure you retained it accurately.  Otherwise you may find yourself leaving out words of blending scriptures together that are unrelated.

STALLING YOUR CALLING

MBA

Timing is everything.

I realize I write for mostly women, and I am about to make another car reference.  Sorry.

I drive a 5 speed manual (stick shift) and let me tell you nothing is more embarrassing when I mess up and the car stalls.  Not only do you hear a loud clunk sound, but you can actually feel it.  You can feel the clunk.  The car stalls because of a few reasons, but ultimately they all come back to timing.  You see, driving a stick shift is all about timing… left foot operating the clutch, right foot the gas, and your right hand is working the shifter.  If your timing is off on just one of those things, your car will stall.  It most often happens in the parent pick up line, because I’m moving through stop and barely go traffic.  Nothing like stalling your car in front of everyone at the school.

So it goes with life, and with our desire to be in God’s will.  At times we may want things to move faster, because we really want what God promised us!  Like when you tell your kids they have thirty minutes to clean up their room, promising a treat if they get it done.  Fifteen minutes later they are in the kitchen declaring they are done.  Upon close inspection, however, mom finds out that the only reason they finished quickly is due to their decision to stuff things under the bed, in drawers, and in the closet.  The room appeared clean, but it wasn’t.  Now, not only do they not get their treat, but they are probably in trouble.  CLUNK.  There may be times where we know something MUST be done, but we drag our feet because we just don’t want to – or perhaps we don’t understand WHY it must be done.  Your boss gives you several projects with deadlines.  You really don’t want to do them, so you take your sweet time.  You are not worried that you will lose your job.  What is the worst case scenario?  What you didn’t know was that this was all a test to see if you could handle a promotion to a new position.  You failed.  You missed the blessing.  CLUNK.

Timing is everything.  God’s timing is perfect.

Have you ever found yourself feeling that God is calling you to do something specific? One of the most difficult things we can face is waiting for God’s calling to come to fruition.  So, we may try to hasten it.

When God promised Abraham and Sarah a baby, they couldn’t wait on God’s timing.  So, Sarah offered her servant to her husband.  Haggar got pregnant and had a baby boy, Ishmael.   While this was Sarah’s idea, she became jealous of Haggar and the boy.  Sarah was trying to rush God’s blessing, and that had consequences for Abraham, Sarah, Haggar and Ishmael.    CLUNK.

On the other hand, if we don’t like, don’t understand or are afraid of what God is calling us to do…. we may put on the brakes.

Jonah was called by God to travel to the city of Nineveh, but Jonah really didn’t want to.  Admittedly, Jonah had good reason to NOT want to go.   Jonah didn’t respond to God’s calling, and was swallowed by a whale.  Dragging his feet and making excuses had a whale sized consequence for Jonah.  CLUNK.

We don’t always stall by trying to move too fast or respond too slowly to God’s call. 

We can stall by looking at the small picture, instead of the big picture.   We can stall when we try to interpret our calling based on human understand versus God’s intentions.  We can stall when we try and claim a calling that was for someone else because it is admirable, or the person doing it is.  We can stall when allow our own bias to try and direct our calling in a specific direction.

When ever we try and influence our calling from our own desires, we are going to stall God’s complete blessing.  CLUNK.

We may get what we want, we may be successful in our endeavors… but the blessing will never be as sweet.    We may not appreciate it as much, because we didn’t have to wait for it.  We may not find a feeling of contentment or satisfaction from it, because the blessing wasn’t complete.  We may face consequences of not having the right resources in place when we needed them, and struggle to move forward.  We may find quick and measurable success and then CLUNK… it stalls.  And when the unexpected occurs, we find ourselves unable to handle these situations because we skipped over important lessons we could have learned along the way.  We may even find total and complete success and fall apart because we don’t have the means to administer that success effectively.  CLUNK.

When God moves things according to His purposes, it takes time.  We have lessons to learn.  Small problems that pop up will help us navigate the big ones in the future.  The right people need to be moved into place, and that may result in God moving someone across country… or they have to experience a success in their life before they can bless your calling.   You will find, as you wait on God, that you are better prepared for what lies ahead.  And, for some of us, to our surprise, we may find that what we THOUGHT  God was calling us to do, was something entirely different.  Something greater than we could have ever imagined for ourselves.

If you feel like your calling is stalling, here are some great questions to ask yourself:

1)  Is this calling part of my daily prayer life?  Do I have others praying with me over this?

2)  Is the calling really stalled or does God have me in a period of waiting?  Pray for direction.

3)  Have I been rushing to make things happen according to my timeline?  Pray for patience, and peace.

4)  Am I dragging my feet because I don’t want to do, or don’t understand, what God is requiring of me?  Pray for motivation & desire.

5)  Am I doing something to hinder that call?  Pray for clarity in your life & revelation of sin or idols in your life that are in the way.

6) Do I understand the call or am I applying my own desires to it?  Pray for discernment and for God’s affirmation.

God’s timing is perfect, and when He is ready for you to move, or to wait… He will reveal it to you.  He will hear your prayers, He will answer them.  It may show up in your prayer journal, opportunities that present themselves, people He moves into your life, the Holy Spirit compelling you, or the audible voice of God.

If you are too busy trying to work it out yourself, you might miss it.

Remember, all that we do is for His glory and for His purposes.  If we are too busy doing it on our own power and ability, we can’t give Him the glory.  He may be stalling your calling, to remind you He is in charge & to get you back on track.