Staying True

Yesterday was such a great day professionally speaking. I loved the photos from my photoshoot, for example. But something amazing happened.

As I was walking up in the woods near Shaver’s Creek with my oldest daughter–after a great drive listening to all her favorite tunes in the little Honda she drives–I thought about the simple pleasures and profound joys of nature, of being with your family, and of enjoying the simplicity of life. God’s joy and peace flooded my heart, and I rejoiced! But just as I was giddy with delight upon finding this huge frog in the pond (what could be better?), my phone rang with an offer to speak at a national conference. What an honor and joy! This would represent the largest audience I’ve spoken to.

What I noticed about that phone call involved where my attention went after I hung up the phone. It was the frog. It was my daughter. It was the way the setting sun seemed to light her up from within. It was the deeply theological conversation we were having about following Jesus through suffering or disappointment. It wasn’t the photoshoot. It wasn’t the speaking gig. It was the frog. 

Once, things like photoshoots and big speaking offers would have captured my whole heart and then disillusioned me with their eventual emptiness and inability to love you back. It took 15 years to learn how to stay true to loving God, loving others, and loving His creation without needing or being allured by fame and wealth and attention. This is why we have to wait so long for our younger dreams to come true. God does this so we’re not destroyed by our dreams. He does this so we learn how to stay true to Him and to ourselves.

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