By Novia Reid
I was ready to check out at my local grocery store when I scanned the lines for several minutes to find the shortest one. I chose what seemed to be the quickest, but as I waited, I watched people in the adjacent line move ahead while mine remained stagnant. Internally, I debated if I should leave where I was and move to the other line. The debate lasted for a few minutes, but I decided to remain where I was. Then suddenly, a woman several feet ahead of me said, “She’s open.” Another lane unexpectedly opened, and I was second in line. I exited the store sooner than anticipated because I chose to remain put.
Later, I started to think about how the grocery store encounter mirrored other parts of my life. I reflected on the many times I changed lanes on the highway simply because others were moving ahead, and I wanted to catch up, only to abandon my line and become stuck. But, beyond the grocery store and traffic lane experiences, God reminded me of how we do the same thing when it comes to purposes He has rooted in our hearts. Thus, I was inspired to share three insights to encourage you to stay rooted in your purpose.
Stay on your path
When God puts purposes in our hearts, we may feel scared, excited, unprepared, ill-equipped, or all four at once. Yet once the fear and doubt subside, we regain our posture and mustard-seed faith and give our best. We may not have all the answers, know the right people, or have our next move figured out, but we get things done because God sends the people we need and leads us.
But as time progresses and we see little progress from our efforts, we question if God chose us or gave us the purpose. We look around at others moving ahead in their pursuits who seemingly have things worked out, and we are moving slowly. We begin to tell ourselves we are not doing enough. We may even believe we are not enough. When we embrace these stories, we leave our position. We detour from the path God has us on in hopes we can make our purposes come to life sooner.
As tempting as it may be to buy the course someone else just bought, join a new group, or ignore an instruction God gave because it doesn’t make sense, stay on the path He called you to walk. That means following His directions and not moving until He says move. From your perspective and perhaps the view of others, you are probably behind. Rest assured, you are not. I am so glad I remained put. Because I stayed in position, a new lane suddenly opened. But had I moved, I would have experienced a more significant delay.
Stay encouraged when things seem slow or like they are falling apart. Easier said than done, I know. Yet, these two truths have encouraged me: God does not make mistakes, and He finishes what He starts. God did not mistakenly choose you to fulfill the purpose He planted in you. There is a reason He chose you. Let that be your encouragement if discouragement looms and you want to quit because things are not working out as planned or you aren’t progressing as fast as you believe you should. Let the other truth that God is a finisher encourage you also. God finishes what He starts. (Philippians1:6) Cling to that promise. God will complete the purpose He began in you.
I lost sight of my goal ~ paying for my groceries and going home when I started to compare my pace to other shoppers. Comparison robs us not only of joy and peace but of focus and progress. Comparison discourages you, but it also distracts you. Stay focused on your path, your pace, and your purpose. Distractions are not always readily discerned but look out for anything or anyone that leads you away from what God rooted in your heart. Something or someone that does not draw you closer to fulfilling may be a distraction, so stay focused.
Finally, God used my mundane grocery store experience to first remind me, then to remind you to stay in position, encouraged, and focused. While I hope the three insights encouraged and inspired you, may this empower you. The woman you are becoming in the process of God birthing what He planted in you is sometimes more worthy in God’s eyes. You are learning. You are maturing. You are evolving, and that is a beautiful sight to behold. Still, beyond the gratification God feels from seeing His daughter transform is how your transformation goes hand in hand with the purpose He called you to complete.
About the author:
Novia Reid is a Miami-based licensed psychotherapist, transformational speaker, and author. She is the creator of Regain Your Core, a transformational coaching program that helps women who have lost themselves from setbacks, heartbreaks, and traumas regain their identities. You can find Novia at her website www.noviareid.com and on YouTube and Instagram at regainyourcore.