Fighting Shameful Trends

I’m exhausted in every sense of the word.  Emotionally, physically, spiritually, mentally, totally and completely.  Really in all ways that end in “ly.”  Well, I guess the words bully, snuggly and barely all end in “ly” and don’t quite work.  Soooo, {awkward pause} anyways…

At my work we reference “LY” quite a bit.  On a weekly basis I’m comparing TY’s numbers to LY’s numbers – which means this year to last year.   The goal is always to rise above LY.  Some months I hit my goals, other months…well, I just don’t.  A lot of outside factors can impact whether my TY numbers grow or not.  Sometimes, I can work really really hard and not see any growth at all…because I can’t control when a valuable sales member quits, when the economy fluctuates, or if the competition puts out a Groupon that steals all the business.  These are things I simply cannot control that kill growth in TY’s numbers.  And everyone knows you can’t change LY’s numbers.  Last year is done, yesterday is gone, the past is the past.

That’s a tough reality of life, isn’t it?  LY (last year/yesterday) is gone – we can’t change it now.  TY (this year) is here, ready to be seized, ready to grow…but things happen that are out of our control – {dang Groupons} – and so then we are left with a choice.

Give Up. or. Give In.

Several years ago I decided that my new life motto was going to be GIVE UP…not in.  It’s a strange thing to hear your own pep-talk start with “GIVE UP!!!!!!  Just GIVE UP already!!!!!”  Yeah, doesn’t sound very peppy, does it?

It’s easy to spiral into dark places.  Believe me when I say, I need no help to get there.  Whether it’s negative self-talk, making assumptions/mind-reading, blame games, or forceful outside factors, it’s easy to “GIVE IN” to these destructive thoughts.  The mind is a powerful place – a place where it’s tempting to Give In.  The good news is, we don’t have to.  The alternative?  To GIVE UP.

Giving things Up to the Lord isn’t always easy.  Why?  Could it be my desire for control?  My lack of trust?  My impatience?  The fact I can’t physically see Him and that He isn’t on any of the social networks, not to mention He totally doesn’t text?  As I search for personal growth from LY to TY, I’ve recently noticed a shameful trend in my behaviors.

When faced with exhaustion…be it emotionally, physically, spiritually, mentally, totally or completely…I turn to godly people before God himself.  That phone is handy.  That Skype button is just one click away.  That Facebook status update is guaranteed results.  Why turn to God himself, whom I can’t see, can’t always hear, who frankly takes longer than .384 seconds to answer…when I can get insta-advice through godly friends?

Not to discount godly counsel, good friends, wise loved ones.  But as dear and important as these people are, they AREN’T God.  Do they respond to text messages faster than God does?  Yes.  I’ll give them that much…

In my exhaustion, I’ve poured myself into the Word the past 24 hours, I’ve been on and off my knees in prayer, I’ve GIVEN UP more than I’ve Given In to the desire to turn to others vs. God.  My cell phone has sat unused, my Facebook account deactivated, my conversations with others have not been advice-or-wisdom-or-“opinion-please?”-starved.

As I re-focus my vision on personal growth and facing mountains, I’ve been swept off my feet by turning to God vs. godly people.  I’ve gained more than I could have hoped for in the past 24 hours by seeking God, not as a compliment to others’ advice, but as THE advice.  Why was I so afraid He would disappoint?  My problems haven’t disappeared, yet I no longer need to weed through the voices of the masses…because One voice is all it takes.  And that voice is so far from exhausting.

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