Last week BJ, the girls and I went on a road trip to Phoenix, Arizona to attend a conference. We love road trips! It has usually been the place where we talk and dream about all the things we want to accomplish in our lives. I guess it serves as a visual parallel between the road trip-journey and our real life- journey. This wasn’t the first time we had been gone to this particular conference, in fact we had been several times. The first time we had gone was when we were just dating over 6 years ago. I remember that trip like it was yesterday. That trip was so significant because it was the first time we talked and dreamt about our future together. During that conference we were all asked to write down the vision for our life; things we wanted to see accomplished in our lifetime, our goals and our dreams.
Write it Down.
BJ and I wrote down a few things we wanted to accomplish personally and then we wrote down what we wanted to accomplish together. If you know anything about our story, you know that we knew we were going to get married before our first date. (so it wasn’t too weird doing this before we actually married) This wasn’t the first time we had shared what was in our hearts, but it was the first time we wrote them down. We prayed over our dreams and ultimately placed them in God’s hands.
Make it Plain.
So here we were driving to this conference we had attended 6 years ago, but this time we had been married for 5 years, we had moved across the country twice, we had two little girls in the back seat listening to “No More Monkeys Jumping on the Bed” and we were traveling with a team from the Los Angeles Dream Center (our church and place where BJ is on staff) This was quite surreal on so many levels.
We talked about the vision we wrote out 6 years ago and as we went through them one by one we realized that many of those dreams and goals we wrote down we have already accomplished! It was so exciting and it gave us great perspective of this crazy adventure we have been on together for the past 6 years. The past few years have been filled with great times, amazing moments, tears of sadness, betrayal, loneliness, obscurity, victory, doubt, faith, risk and fun. They have been the most amazing 6 years of my life and I wouldn’t change or trade not a single moment of them, honestly. What I can say about every moment and season over these past 6 years is that although they have been made up of a lot of things, one thing remains the same. These past 6 years have been made up of tough decisions.
We have had to make some tough decisions: Decisions to move across the country, to move across the country with 3 month old babies, decisions to leave great positions, decisions to trust God in the most unsure times of our lives, decisions to forgive people who have hurt us, decisions to take positions that we knew technically could not provide for what we need, decisions to not defend ourselves or our reputation but allow God to fight for us, decisions to give when we knew we didn’t have anything to give, decisions to not give up, decisions to not care when people have thought we were/are crazy, decisions to stand for a cause that is unpopular, decisions to believe that we have not been forgotten, decisions to honor and defend those who have not defended us, decisions to stop pursuing relationships and people God has removed from our lives. The list could go on and on.
Tough: strong or resilient.
I don’t list these tough decisions so that you could give me a pat on my back, but instead to paint a picture of what it means to have vision for your life and to submit that vision to the One who has the power to make that vision come true. Over 6 years ago we gave God the WHAT and He has determined the HOW. Each moment, each season, each tough decision has helped us grow and mature into the people He wants us to be. These decisions are not called TOUGH for no reason. They have been extremely tough to make and I would be lying if I said that we handled them the right way every time. But I am so thankful for a God who is rich in grace and who knows the intention of our hearts. Our desire has always been to please God and to do what He has asked us to do. We are here today with so many of those goals and dreams accomplished not because we are amazing and deserve an award, but because we have learned to see that what is in your heart is often hidden behind a tough moment only to be received after a tough decision.
One Decision Away.
I don’t know where you are in your adventure. I don’t know what the vision for your life is. Maybe your vision is to marry an amazing man who will one day father your children and make you the happiest woman on the planet. Your tough decision might be to continue to believe that your prince charming is out there and not to settle. Maybe you are not fulfilled in your job and you have a vision to own your own business. Your tough decision might be to submit to your boss, not complain about your workplace meanwhile putting a business plan together for your future company. Maybe what you envision for your life looks nothing like your current situation. Maybe your tough decision is to take a risk and stop doing the same things day in and day out expecting them to change. I don’t know where you are or what you envision for your life, but I do know that you are one tough decision away from seeing what is in your heart become a reality.
Are you at a tough decision crossroad? If so, I would love to hear from you. Please comment or share in the comment box below.
TRUTH: “Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am.
DARE: Decide to make that tough decision.