Reading The Signs

We seek to identify ourselves by material things and accomplishments, and we are left confused and thirsty for something we can’t even identify.

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The kids have gone back to school, which means I have just a little more time on my hands to do some of the silly ‘mom’ things I don’t get a chance to do during the busy summer months. One of those things is simply meandering through my favorite home and hobby mega-store for fall decorations. It’s excellent down-time, and I just love not being rushed.

I came across a little sign nestled amongst the fake pumpkins that read “Create The Life You Love.” It was cute and rustic and encouraging for a moment until started to do what I do best: I analyze. My kids will be the first to tell you nobody can turn a little thing into a big thing faster than I can. Bumper stickers, random comments from strangers, you name it. There’s a life lesson in there somewhere! (Insert teenage eye-rolling and sighing).

I happen to be a big believer in little things. The small, seemingly insignificant messages we read or scroll past have ways of working themselves into our heads and belief systems. Quite honestly, many of them go against what Jesus taught us and lead us down a wide path of confusion.

So what’s the big deal about creating a life you love? What does that even mean? Surround yourself with lovely things and do what makes you happy, I suppose. I try to do those things; it’s why I go to the hobby store! We quickly learn that it’s a bit of a trap, however, if we only focus on setting up a beautiful life for just ourselves. The things that we think will make us happy never really do, and we just climb and claw for more. It’s a ladder with no end, and all we can do is see which rung we are on in comparison to everyone else.

The truth is we aren’t created to be the sole authors of our story. We seek to identify ourselves by material things and accomplishments, and we are left confused and thirsty for something we can’t even identify.

Should we work to create a beautiful life? Of course, as long as we recognize that we ourselves are not the source of all that beauty. The drive to create is a wonderful and God-given quality, but He never ever tells us that our satisfaction or significance lies within what we conjure up or accomplish.

We work hard to be fulfilled, but God doesn’t want us hustling for all the wrong reasons. What He offers is better than any material or worldly treasure. This was further solidified in my mind as I turned the aisle and saw yet another sign written in the same fancy script: “Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain.” Wise words from Psalm 127 and an almost humorous reminder to me to let HIM be the source of the beauty and blessing that I desire to be surrounded with!



Featured Image by James Coleman

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About the Author

The purpose of 'Into The Foolishness of God' is to bring believers into a deeper understanding of what it means to truly abide in God's Word and thrive in Jesus Christ. We are called to be a joyful and fruitful people, but the world we live in is increasingly hostile and confusing to navigate. By digging deep into God's Word together the hope is to build and encourage a community of believers who can live in both truth and love.