A couple weeks ago, I got an opportunity to write a lot of content for a friend of mine and make a good chunk of money in about the course of a week. I enjoy writing, I love helping small businesses, and I wasn’t going to turn down another stream of income—it was a win-win-win. One night around midnight, as I stumbled from my room to the kitchen to get a snack to keep me awake so I could continue writing, I noticed a bunch of papers I had scattered on the floor. These papers are the outline for the book that I’m currently writing.
And the thought entered my mind: I was focusing on the good, but not the great.
This opportunity was a good one that helped both me and my friend, but it also distracted me from my mission in this season. In fact, even though I’m not overtly resisting this writing season, I’ve been covertly resisting. I’ve been allowing myself to get distracted by other things that are good and I believe are blessings, but aren’t the best thing. And, in my pursuit of these other things, I’ve ended up being disobedient.
That sure is an uncomfortable realization to have. I’ve been going about my merry way, thinking about all that I’ve been blessed with, thanking God for the opportunities in front of me, only to realize this week that he’s been whispering to me “This is good, but I have better for you.” I’ve been content with the little that I can see and so overwhelmed by his goodness, but he’s so much better than I can possibly imagine.
“Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” Matthew 6:26 (NIV)
This is the verse that has been on my mind since this revelation. God is a good father who cares for us tremendously. But that care extends even further than I can imagine. If we’re going to extend the bird analogy, it’s like I’ve been settling for Dollar Store brand bird food, but God has top-shelf, nutrient-rich food available to me if I choose to take it.
Amazingly, God doesn’t force us to do the right thing, to pursue him, or to choose health. He gives us the option. I can keep eating my subpar bird food that I think is great, or I can choose to go his way. He doesn’t shame me or beat me up about it, but he lovingly invites me to the table. He wants me to experience the goodness that he has available, not because he gets anything out of it, but simply because he loves me. He will continue loving me and pursuing me even if I choose to stick with the “okay” or the “good”. His love isn’t conditional—he truly is amazing.
So, here I am, laying down what I want and turning in my “good” for his “great”.
Have you ever found yourself settling for the “good” in front of you instead of the “great” God has for you?
How do you differentiate the “good” from the “great” in your life?