There are times in life when we need to let go. Let go of things, people, dreams, attitudes. It’s not easy, especially when they have been a part of our lives for years.
For instance, I was a singer for over 50 years. It was a dream that became a profession, a hobby, a fulfilling ministry. I even made a recording when I was 70, realizing it would be my last one. I’ve struggled over the last ten years to sing once in a while, but it hasn’t gone well. A few days ago I burst into tears, finally dealing with the emotion of letting that part of my identity go.
A couple of years ago, my husband and I let go of our dream to live out the rest of our lives in Colorado. It wasn’t practical. Especially when our daughter and son-in-law in Kansas offered us a beautiful place to live in with them. In sizing down, though, I sorted through a whole plastic bin of house ideas and plans I had collected, hoping to build a cabin in the mountains someday. When our daughter got home, I showed her what I had done and announced that my dreams were in the trash. She had the wisdom to remind me of a song I used to sing called “Words of Praise” by Ken Medema. One of the phrases says: “When the life I wanted gives way to one much better…”
That’s what happens when our identity is wrapped up in following Christ. As the saying goes: “When He closes one door, He opens another.” And now I am finding that my identity isn’t being a singer, but a servant. Isn’t that what our Lord wants? He showed us how to serve those around us in many different ways and capacities. And He promised to reward us in eternity, not necessarily now.
What have you let go of? Whatever it is, I hope it’s not the desire to serve the Savior who let go of heaven to come to earth for us. His dream was for eternity – that many would be rescued from the grip of death to live with Him forever in His glorious kingdom.
Is there something you are gripping that needs to be let go? There’s freedom in release. And there’s joy in replacing it with God’s best plan for your life. Are you willing to surrender even good things for something better?
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Wonderful blog post, Donna!
Many people today want to add enough Jesus to their lives to enhance it but are not so interested in counting the cost of following Him (which includes surrendering all to Him). I’ve realized lately that letting go of things is an ongoing processes throughout our Christian lives. We can be sure that as God’s Spirit brings things to mind and convicts us, there will be much more letting go than we might realize.
For me, my entire life was devoted to music – specifically playing the guitar. It was my identity and what I spent the most time and money pursuing. Towards the end of 2016, I stopped spending hours every day writing, recording and playing music. Instead, I spent that time in God’s Word and writing commentary from my daily readings. It was during that time God called me to start a church. Once the distraction of my idol was gone, God’s will for my life became clear.
I’m grateful that I’ve been writing music again (mostly modern hymns/spiritual songs that we sing as a church) but my identity is in Christ – not music, not the guitar and not even the ministry. I do have to stay on guard though as those distractions are always on the horizon.
Thank you for sharing these things. I love you and am proud of you. I share your blogs with some of my friends at work and they love them and this one was timely for one of my precious friends.