Not By My Strength
“Be ready in season and out of season.” 2 Timothy 4:2
I have to admit, this week has already been a tough pull for me. For some reason I am just not feeling as inspired or as energetic as I usually do. I know the list of chores that stand before me each day grows in quantity as planting and milking season are just around the corner – and it seems more and more often I find my mind going to thoughts about what needs to be done to prepare for that next season over what I need to tend to more urgently in the here and now. Mind you, it is not that I dislike any of these activities. I actually love puttering in the garden, making meals with fresh ingredients right out of the garden, spending time with my cow, and making all of the dairy products that are associated with having an abundance of milk. But at the same time, I also want to finish strong in the season I am working my way out of, which includes homeschooling and tying up loose ends from my previous speaking engagements. I find myself often torn between where I should devote my greatest amount of energy because my heart is losing interest in the old projects and starting to yearn for the new ones.
I think the way I am feeling about the activities in my life is fairly common to how most of us also struggle in our spiritual lives. At times we desire to do those things we have been shown on the horizon over the things we have been left to tend to in the here and now. We find ourselves putting as much effort as we can into preparing for the next step God has shown us while at the same time not always devoting the best of our energies in taking care of remnants that remain in the activities we find wrapping up in our lives. It is at these times our spiritual fervor for moving to the next activity with God needs to be tempered so we can still be mindful to finish strong in the places we are or have recently been. It would be negligent to leave loose ends strewn about that could, in the future, entangle us when we do finally make that leap into our new spiritual season. God calls us to be ready, whether the season is upon us or not but He does not say we should go ahead of Him if we desire more what is ahead of us instead of what is moving off into the distance behind us.
It is the waiting and the wrapping up of smaller things that usually drain us because the energy to do those things must come out of the dwindling reserve we have been given by the Lord for that project, not the new burst of energy that we know will come for the next project just around the corner. I find for me it is like I want to wait for that next burst to come so I can borrow off of that new energy to wrap up what I have been called to be faithful to bring closure to before it comes. But God wants us to be faithful with the energy He has already supplied for the place we find ourselves today, not where we see ourselves tomorrow or in our distant future.
As I start this new day I am choosing to be thankful for the work I have set before me today - thankful for the things that were, the things that are, and the things that will be in the future. Yet, I know very well, my mind needs to focus on whatever the Lord puts before me this day and this day alone, not wishing for anything more or putting anything off until a new wave of inspiration hits. Instead today I choose to move along one step at a time, knowing that Jesus is walking with me and helping me draw upon those remaining energies for the tasks I need to complete in this season. I want to be ready and unhindered when the next season begins and that readiness starts today in being faithful not to leave anything unfinished behind.