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Tag: Zechariah 4:10

New Year's 2020 fireworks

2020 Vision

black and white eye with iris in color

The human eye is amazingly complex. Charles Darwin, in his Origin of Species[i], claimed something so detailed and flawless as the human eye to have been developed by natural selection seemed highly absurd. The complexities of the eye are why retinal scans are increasingly being used because an iris has 256 unique characteristics, whereas a fingerprint only has 40. The retina’s unique pattern of blood vessels isn’t even the same in identical twins.

The human eye can a resolution of 576 megapixels compared to the 7 megapixels of the iPhone 7, according to scientist Dr. Rodger Clark, and the average eye can see a million colors and over 100 different shades. Even with all this detail and remarkable intricacies, there is still a broader perspective we often overlook.

Sight is what you can see with your eyes open. Vision is what you see with your eyes closed. – Pastor Devon Frye

The New Year is a time when we pause and try to gain a bigger picture. The planners of us set-out their resolutions for 2020. Businesses strategize over hiring needs, financial budgets, and profit trends. Those of us hoping to shed a few pounds resolve to head to the gym or pass on sweets.

How many of us set our resolutions on a whim? I admit I’ve done it, until a few years ago, a friend of mine had our small group type out our goals for the year—the first and foremost being a spiritual goal. It gave me pause. Here I thought I could jot down a few quick aspirations, but why hadn’t I asked God what His plans were for me? Where was God trying to grow me? To whom was He calling me to reach?

Disney Castle

Walt Disney looked at a swamp and saw the world’s greatest theme park.

What potential does God see within you that you may not see yourself? Inviting God into your plans can rock your world. The first thing I realized is that His vision is bigger and reaches farther than I could ever imagine. My sight is limited, but God’s is unlimited. Some of God’s goals for me seemed insurmountable like writing a book. Others were small, like checking in on some friends he brought to my mind. However, at the end of the year, when we sat down to review our goals, I got to see how God stretched me and how a goal I thought was insignificant extended from a ripple into a massive wave.

I’ve struggled with doubts about not being able to meet expectations. In the past, I’ve skipped setting goals because it was difficult to face not hitting them, or I set easy ones so I could check the box. But our God isn’t a God of the mediocre. He isn’t into settling. He says in Isaiah 43: 18-19, “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.”

There were some goals I didn’t accomplish, but God gave me grace and reminded me of Zechariah 4:10, “Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin.” The following year I hit that goal and then some.

Now is a great time to ask God into your plans. Pray. Ask Him to show you His aspirations for you in 2020.

How is God going to grow you in 2020?

New Year's 2020 image by Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

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[i] Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species By Means of Natural Selection or The Preservation of Favored Races in the Struggle For Life (New York: The Modern Library, 1993), p. 227.

Wheat field at sunrise

How to Reap a Harvest

“Leave a place better than you found it.” Ever since I heard this piece of wisdom from author and speaker, Joe McGee, I’ve repeated it a hundred times, and my kids Wheat field at sunrisemay roll their eyes when we’re leaving a fast food restaurant, or someone’s house, or the church, but I interpret it to mean I’m getting through to them. It’s not always fun to pick up the napkins someone else left on the floor at Dairy Queen or to wipe off the sink at church when someone else left a mess, but I remind them that opportunities will arise when you strive to do more than what is expected.

People will invest in you when you are faithful in the small things.

When my husband’s company posts a hiring ad, typically there is a small project suggestion at the bottom of the job posting. For example: create a video that tells why they’d be a good fit for the company. It’s amazing how many people send over their resume and completely ignore the project request. However, the ones who went the extra mile and created the short video have almost always received a job offer. (I actually can’t think of one who hasn’t, but that might not be the case.)

What is expected of you is the threshold—so do more.

We were not meant to blend in and get by. To be salt and light to the world, we must stand out, and to that, we need to go above and beyond. Take it from Rebekah in the Bible. When Abraham grew old, he sent his servant to go find a wife for his son Isaac. I can imagine the servant stressed out by the big task of finding a bride Two camelsand convincing her to come back with him to an unknown place to marry a man she’d never met. So the servant prayed, help me be successful in this, Lord. He asked it to be a sign if a woman waters his camels then that woman was to be Isaac’s bride. So the servant sat down near the spring and along came Rebekah. He asked her for a drink, and she not only gave him a drink but watered his camels also. Now, this doesn’t sound like too big of a task until you consider that camels can drink up to fifty gallons and the servant didn’t just bring one or two camels—he had brought ten. That is a lot of water to draw from the well. Rebekah went the extra mile, and she reaped a harvest of God’s blessing in return.

It doesn’t have to be a monumental task like watering ten camels. It’s okay to start small. Zechariah 4:10 says, “Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin.” We might not be able to do for all, but we can start with one. Bless them, sow a seed, and watch it turn into a harvest.

Go ahead, leave the world better than you found it.

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