Discouragement doesn’t have to derail you from your dreams when you focus instead of the delight of chasing the dream itself.
A confident spirit is our bonus weekly confidence podcast that is meant to bring you a brief, but deep blessing to your confidence growth. In these micro episodes you’ll get a quick hit of confidence coaching for your soul. These episodes are faith-based and intended to help you with clear and practical ways to fill your soul with confidence as you grow in your relationship with God. For me, the core and essence of all my confidence comes from Him. It is God who freed me from my insecurities, who fills me with worth as a daughter of the king, and who gives me the gift to walk in peace and joy all the days of my life. If you want to grow a more confident spirit, these faith-focused episodes are for you … let’s dive in, shall we?
Delight is detached from the outcome.
It doesn’t need an objective, a finish line, or a planned element to it.
If you haven’t recently spent time with a two-year-old at the beach, allow me to paint you a picture of the beautiful disaster it is.
The entire objective is to tire your child out, while also keeping them alive and not getting fried by the sun. This is a delicate mission, as the best time of the day for this is midday, also the hottest part of the day.
You can forget hoping for a free minute to sit down, or the fantasy of being able to sit in the shade of an umbrella. An eternal optimist, I still always bring a book and magazine with me. Just in case, I tell myself.
But, truth is, with a two-year-old, you move the whole time.
Recently, during a four-hour jaunt on the beach with my son Baker I managed to rack up 22,000 steps in the sand alone. People compliment me all the time on how fit my legs look. Some of it is from running, and some is from being a parent to two very active kids. What can I say, I’m always looking for a silver lining to the things that inconvenience me or exhaust me.
Now, back to things that exhaust me: small kids at the beach.
My little guy has a system.
First, he would run full speed towards the ocean. Next, he would belly flop into a crashing wave, sometimes to successfully pick himself back up, and other times to be tossed around in the surf, needing rescue.
Clean and wet, he liked to run back up the beach to our stuff, grab his toy truck, and take off full speed towards every neighboring beach-goer peacefully reading a book.
Waving to the readers and garnishing the smiles of new fans, he would then push his truck full speed towards anyone nearby building sandcastles. Seeing a target, the truck gets abandoned and Baker becomes a Godzilla-like monster, rushing towards the delicate masterpieces, and me sprinting to get ahead of him to block the way.
Averted, it turns into a game of tag and chases with us, leading us back to his beloved and faithful truck. He pushes the truck for ten minutes, and then the cycle starts over. He pauses to yell out “boat” or “airplane” to anyone passing by and stops to show his truck to the constant flow of beach walkers at the edge of the water where he plays.
Baker’s truck captures his heart.
It has his full attention.
Except when a sandpiper shows up.
When the sandpipers arrive on the scene, everything gets abandoned and Baker chases them.
The way he runs is different than the way he runs after anything else. He runs with delight. The smile on his face is curious and elated, simultaneously convinced that he will catch said little sandpiper.
He obviously never does, but he never stops trying.
A little boy with an excessively expressive face not once does disappointment flash across his face. Instead, an ear-to-ear grin takes up most of his face.
When the bird flies away, he stops dead in his tracks. Looks up to the sky, reaching out with his hand, calling after the birdie to come back, and, most impressively, without losing any giddy-up, he redirects his attention to the next bird to chase.
The unwavering enthusiasm for this sport of chase is marvelous to watch. In spectating, I lose myself in his delight. It transports me back to a place of my own childhood. It feels magical and innocent. A wave of peace envelops my heart, and through merely watching my own son, I am filled with his delight.
Delight is contagious.
As I follow him, deepening my footprints in the sand, walking circles around the same few hundred feet of beach, I feel God imprint something deeper in my heart.
The delight Baker feels and expresses as he chases sandpipers requires an absolute state of presence. He is there, on the beach. The birds and how he wants to catch them is the only thing capturing his attention. His focus in clear, and so the flow of delight can be expressed.
His joy isn’t contingent on his success. It’s the classic story of how the journey is more important than the destination.
Matthew 6:34 ESV
“Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.
Philippians 4:8-9 ESV Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.
Lord, God, thank you for delighting in us. How marvelous beyond our feeble human understanding are your works. That you would create us so uniquely and so intently. We stand in reverence for You, for calling us Your children. We praise You, for you are a good, good Father. It’s who you are, and we are loved by you, and deeply grateful for the peace that our status in your kingdom gives us.
Forgive us for our worry. We confess that worry is our misplaced effort to do things that You have already done for us. Let us not be distracted or burdened by that which we cannot control or change, for You have told us over and over again, that we have Your full permission to be present and to delight in the day that the Lord has made. So we proclaim today Lord, that this is the day the Lord has made, we will rejoice and be glad in it. We trust You because we trust Your goodness. We honor your sovereignty. Thank you for the freedom and gift You give us by removing our responsibility for worry.
We crave peace and fullness, and yet, we have it available to us, right here, right now. Give us practical wisdom and insight this week in our daily lives to know exactly how to step out of anxiety and worry and into the peacefulness of Your care. We confess it scares us, to let go of control and to trust Your provision; forgive us for our lack of faith and embolden us to be brave as we step forward with full confidence in You, in Your care for us and that you are for us, not against. Oh, what a gift we have in Jesus, who gives us this grace and peace through his sacrifice … that we might never be separated from our source – our Father – our creator and provider of joy, breathe, life and hope. Thank You Lord – and hold our hands as we chase the life and calling you have put on our hearts …. that we might chase fullness and the fulfillment of our purpose without being discouraged along the way. Help us master the delicate inner balance between anticipating the future with hope and delighting in the the presence without distraction, yet with forward pressing towards what you’ve called us to ahead. We trust You Lord and thank You for the adventurous story You are writing with our willing hearts and in our lives.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.