Preferences

I prefer to run when it’s 64 degrees outside. I prefer nice running paths without hills. I prefer dry road conditions.  When it comes to running I have a lot of preferences.  Yet, years of marathon training have taught me that my preferences don’t dictate the environment.  God does.  So in order to complete 26.2 miles on race day, there are many times that my preferences have to go right out of the window.  I have learned, as my son would say, to “man- up” and hit the road.  Yet the natural lesson of adjusting pales in comparison to the spiritual truth that moving beyond preferences has revealed.

That truth is: staying committed to the pursuit of a goal when things don’t line up with natural inclinations is an act of worship.  Consciously choosing to take action when the environment so clearly disregards what you prefer is tantamount to laying down your will and accepting the will of God; consequently, when you have an absolute requirement that conditions line up with your desires it bears the mark of idolatry.

God’s plan for your life is set to bring blessings and peace to you. It is not set to always line up with your personal biases.  Ultimately, we are created to accomplish his will. We were created to please him.   Right now you might be thinking, “Isn’t it really a matter of faith?”  Well, no one can deny that it is faith that pleases God-nothing more and nothing less. Yet, a deeper spiritual truth is that the denial of your preferences in light of pursuing a God-given goal not only reveals faith, but also reveals a true heart of worship. It stands in agreement with “not my will, but your will be done.”

So, today ask yourself, “Am I allowing my preferences to keep me from taking action toward accomplishing God’s plan for my life?”  If your answer is yes, don’t be discouraged this is your opportunity to get on track.  Realize that many have stalled in the pursuit of a goal due to unwittingly focusing on preferences instead of the promises of God.  Here’s what you can do to turn it around.

  • Regain your focus by acknowledging the truth. God is faithful and just to forgive.  Determine to move beyond your preferences.
  • Start again. Resolve to pursue the goal no matter the conditions.  Be strong and courageous. God’s mercy does not fail. You don’t have to worry about relapse.  He also promises to fortify against recidivism.
  • Be persistent. Remember you have to finish if you want to attain the prize.
  • Know that God is at work in your life to get you ready for even greater success and fulfillment as you fulfill your purpose.

Blessings to you,

MC