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This is probably drilled in your head by now since I’ve repeated it over the past few weeks, but here it goes again: The difference between living in ‘abundance’ or ‘lack’ depends on perspective. The same thing applies to the direction of our lives.
Why care? Because life never stops moving forward. We are constantly in motion. The only choice we have is which direction to steer, or rather, which forces we choose to drive us.
THE TWO FORCES …
Generally speaking, there are two forces that propel us through life: We are either driven by fear or driven by love. It’s that simple. Whether we acknowledge it or not, these forces are always in play. And as you can probably guess, the difference between whether we live in ‘abundance’ or ‘lack’ also depends on these two forces.
A life propelled by FEAR looks like avoidance. We’re not running towards anything at all; we’re running away. From what? The answers are infinite. We run from the risk of rejection, or from the possibility of failure. We run from having to make decisions (which, ironically, is a decision in itself). We run from having to do undesirable tasks (procrastination). Sometimes we even run from ourselves, from own potential, fearing the possibilities that await us if we stepped forward with intention.
A life propelled by LOVE, on the other hand, looks like purpose. Rather than running away from something, we’re running towards whatever we presume is worthy. This could also have infinite answers. We could run towards the feeling of happiness, peace, and joy. We could run towards making others feel happy and loved. We could also run towards goals we’ve set for ourselves, aiming to achieve a mission that will benefit others.
THE DIFFERENCE IS CRUCIAL …
It’s possible for us to perform the same tasks for entirely different reasons. We could do homework to avoid failing the class (fear), or to genuinely understand the material (love). We could greet our significant other’s parents to avoid disappointing them (fear), or because we genuinely want to honour/respect them (love). We could sit in church and pray because we’re afraid of being judged wrongly by others if we didn’t (fear), or we could pray because we genuinely just want to be with God (love).
One option feels perpetually fearful (a life of ‘lack’), while the other feels freeing, genuine, and steeped in love (a life of ‘abundance’).
HOW THIS APPLIES TO DISCERNMENT …
Here’s a key thing when it comes to discerning God’s will: God never wants us to be motivated by fear, but by love. When we serve others, He doesn’t want us to do it out of fear that He will punish us. He wants us to do it because we genuinely love Him and see Him in others.
So when making an important decision, ask yourself: Are you basing it on ‘fear’ or ‘love’? Don’t mistaken these two with ‘discomfort’ and ‘lack of discomfort’. Both fear and love can feel uncomfortable at times, yet comfortable at others.
Sometimes God’s will is the uncomfortable choice. But the key to discerning whether it’s a good kind of discomfort or a bad one is to ask yourself whether you are motivated by ‘fear’ or ‘love’. The key to courage, to conquering fear, is love itself. Following God doesn’t mean you’ll never experience fear; it just means that the amount of love you have surpasses it to push you forward anyway.
After all: “There is no fear in love. Perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” – 1 John 4:18
Sometimes we get so caught up with running away that we never stop to ask ourselves what we’re running towards. Ultimately, an ‘abundant’ life is one that follows God’s will, which will always be driven by love. So where do you stand? Are you motivated by ‘fear’ or ‘love’? You choose.
WHERE ‘YOU’ COME IN …
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