Wednesday, 01 July 2015 00:00
Onwards & Upwards Written by 
Onwards & Upwards By pippalou

Oh, it’s July! “Um,” you stammer incredulously, “What just happened to the last six months of my life?”

Like you, it’s ridiculous for me to think that we’re halfway into 2015, the months coming and going in a crazy blur. Now we stand on the cusp of July and you may be feeling a little overwhelmed by the guilt of perhaps not attaining to all those goals that you initially set out to do in the beginning of the year.

I’m sure you can agree that setting the goals is always a lot easier than actually following through on them. So, the question perhaps playing on your mind then is how one continues to press on amidst what has been left undone? If this is you, my simple answer would be: there is nothing you can do to change that now. I know this sounds obvious, but the tendency for many is to second guess their worth as human beings based on what they do or don’t do.

My honest confession
The more I wanted to make a success of my life and show that in every area of my life, the more that I realised that I was a failure and a disappointment mostly to myself. I hinged so much of who I was on my achievements. The nagging thought at the back of my mind, however, was that even though I thought I could always do more, it just never seemed like it was ever enough.

One of my favourite Christian authors, Brennan Manning, famously penned: “God loves you as you are, not as you should be.” The first time I heard those words I was struck to the core. The moment I turned the focus off myself and away from what others thought of me was when I felt most happy and at peace about life. It came as a result of seeing the love which Jesus demonstrated on the cross for me. The death he died for all my failings and shortcomings was enough. I no longer have to try and prove that I am good enough or worthy in what I do, because what He has done has freed me from the burden of trying to win others’ approval.

Be honest with yourself
There is nothing wrong with trying to be ambitious as a young professional. I would actually encourage it. However, you also need to be honest with yourself about the goals that you do set which could be somewhat over-ambitious. Maybe something that you are working towards is going to take a little longer than what you, or even your boss, thought it would. That’s okay. Have a plan of action in place where you can make smaller, more attainable goals that can be reached as others hold you accountable to them.

Understand that every step in faith will mean that you will make mistakes. Your character will be called into question. People will be disappointed with you. Should this prevent you from risking everything for what you know God has created you to do? Definitely not. Jesus risked everything so that you would see how much God loves you and allow it to personally shape the way that you work.

Should’ve would’ve
In hindsight, what you know you should’ve done you would’ve done. The reality though is that you didn’t do it. So, what are you going to do about it? You firstly need to come to terms with the fact that God knows how you messed up in the past. What He offers you now, however, is a fresh start where whatever you should’ve done doesn’t need to dictate how you live going forward in the present.


 

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