Think Outside the Box

“Impression without expression leads to depression.”  Rick Warren

This describes exactly what was happening to me recently in my winter season.  I just went months thinking something was “not quite right” in my life.  I was prayerful during this time.  I just knew my discontentment involved my work.  My husband and I are becoming empty nesters so it would make sense that now is the time for me to transition from working part-time around my family to a full-time job, right?

I was laser focused for months on trying to figure out where God wanted me to work full-time, but with no luck in finding the “right” job.  UGGHHHH!!

It is so easy to think that what works for everyone else is going to work for us too, am I right?  We get busy watching how others do “it”.  Or we focus on a part of our life that is in a transition and get so consumed with figuring out what our next step should be that we don’t look up.  We keep our gaze focused in the box that we are in.  We don’t leave room in our minds to allow God to show us something new.

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.  Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is-his good, pleasing and perfect will.”  Romans 12:2

God says there is more to this life than what we see here on earth.  He knew before the beginning of time that there would be patterns (instructions, impressions, plans, examples) set by the world and we would be tempted to follow them.

*Biblical teaching regarding finances goes against what society tells us.  Society would say that he who dies with the most toys wins.  But, God’s word says…give to those in need, live humbly so that our financial  resources can be available to help others.

*Biblical teaching regarding serving others goes against what society tells us.  In the corporate world, it’s every man for himself.  But God’s word says…Jesus came to serve, no to be served.

*Biblical teaching regarding who we answer to and should strive to please goes against what society tells us.  The world says that as long as we are happy, everything is good.   But God’s word says…we have a heavenly father who knows what is best for us.  His ways are better than our ways.

fish out of water

The world has set a pattern in these areas to follow, but God says do not conform, but to transform our thinking.  He goes on with a promise…that if we step out and test him in this, he will show us what his will for our  lives is.

Are you like me in that if something feels “off” in life, you begin looking at how everyone else around you is doing it?

While I have been so focused on what job I should be working, the Lord has been waiting ever so patiently for me to look up and open the box my mind was stuck in. Something as simple as allowing myself the time and effort to pick up my pen and start writing again completely brought into focus the other areas of life I felt unsettled in.  He helped me transform my mind.  To think outside the box.  To do the unpopular thing.  To express rather than depress.

We were all created so that we have something to offer others.  We have gifts inside of us that are unique only to ourselves.  God purposely created us that way so that he could live through us, reaching all people, in all ways, pointing others to him.

If you are struggling in an area of your life, I urge you to look into the other parts. Open your mind up to the possibility that what you’re so focused on or anxious about, is acting as a distraction to what God is trying to tell you.

As we study what God says in his word, and we encourage one another to think outside the “world’s” box,  that is where we will find purpose, God’s purpose, for our lives.  His good, pleasing and perfect will.  It’s a journey of a lifetime, but that’s where I want to be.  Won’t you join me?



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