On Opportunities

I was editing a blog post for my boss a few weeks ago and this graphic leaped out at me. My #oneword for 2017 is Still. I’m realizing there is a balance between being still and settling.

Reflecting on the past month I’ve been a failure at being still. We moveOpportunitiesd 8 hours away from Virginia, the place we’ve called home for four years. As we rushed to pack, say goodbyes, find housing, transfer utilities and insurance and all the things moving requires I found that being still felt like a hindrance.

My time with God became short and to the point. Prayers focused on the details of our move.

Conversations surrounded our move. Free time was absorbed with tasks for our move. Everything became about moving.

All the talking and planning and preparing revealed something in me. When it comes to opportunities, it’s easier to see those that lay in front of others than me. My kids are entering new schools. As we’ve prepared them we’ve seen all the opportunities that now lay in front of them. It’s clear they have many great choices. So many options that it will be impossible for them to participate in everything. Go! Do! It’s easy to encourage my boys to seize the opportunities that present themselves.

My own path feels less clear. Opportunities exist. There is no questioning that. Still, the details feel fuzzy. When I pause to ask myself what are the opportunities I have right in front of me today, my mind blanks.

Ryan’s point is simple “focusing on what we could have done will do nothing to move us forward in what we still can do.” Moving creates an automatic clean slate. Whether desired or not, a chapter closes with a move. That clean slate creates the chance for new opportunities. It should be freeing, exciting even. That is how I see this for my boys.

What’s holding me back? My answer to that question is nothing. Kristen Strong’s Girl Meets Change reminds us “change isn’t just something God allows but is something he authors.” So if God is authoring this change then the opportunities I am being invited into will also make themselves apparent.

So the challenge becomes to be still with eyes open. Look forward and not behind, and respond with a yes of obedience when the situation is clear. To not settle, but seek to move in God’s best.

I’m learning that being still isn’t something that just happens. It is an action that takes a focused effort. I am beginning to think that at the end of this season a new opportunity awaits, one I could never have orchestrated for myself.

Right now this season of stillness seems to be inviting me to rest and grow. Perhaps it’s in preparation for something, perhaps it’s to help create a new rhythm. Regardless, it cannot be rushed through. It cannot be ignored.

 

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