It’s the beginning of a new year, and I don’t have a word, a detailed plan, or written goals. I’m more confused than I was three weeks ago about next steps in my life. I’m praying about what I should do today and am overwhelmed and exhausted.
Are you like me, praying for guidance, direction, and the revelation of next steps? Like you, I want to be obedient to God’s will for my life and expand His kingdom as I walk out His plans for me.
But the voices of anxiety creep in and sound something like this:
- What if I miss my next step?
- What if I don’t live up to the full potential God has for me?
- What am I doing that makes any real impact, like her?
- What if I’m missing His plan completely?
- What if I’m letting fear dictate my actions and I don’t even realize it?
I’ve been praying about what to do, when instead I should have been asking Jesus to help me become who He created me to be.
When I am who God tells me I am, then I can be and do His will.
He doesn’t need me to do anything for Him, only with Him. He gives clarity and direction at the perfect time. God doesn’t want any response to His love that isn’t rooted in love — like comparison, hustling to be the first or best, shying away from my calling, seeking to make a name for myself, striving to save the world, or anything done out of fear.
The One who holds today and all the plans for all our tomorrows wants us to be with Him — to follow Jesus so closely, our breath is on His neck. You won’t be a able to tell when His footsteps end and yours begin. When He pauses, you can pause too. When He rests, you need to rest too. When He gives you a look of confidence that pours courage into your heart, you can do the unthinkable thing — big or mundane — He asks of you for the kingdom.
You don’t have to be prepared or educated or have a detailed plan; you can be filled up with God’s Spirit. In Acts 4, “Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them. . .” who Jesus really was. Then the “members of the council were amazed when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, for they could see that they were ordinary men who had no special training. They also recognized them as men who had been with Jesus” (Acts 4:8-13 NLT).
I want to be recognized as a woman who has been with Jesus, my life overflowing from His presence alone. Then, others will be amazed by what God is doing as He uses me to expand His kingdom, and God will be glorified. Isn’t that what we really want as His daughters?
It’s easier to have lists and goals than to have our life and identity be an open-palm process. We can move in Jesus, waiting on the Spirit’s leading, stepping into obedience. This kind of life is always in season, bearing fruit and being pruned, full of adventure and patience, longing for the miracle and telling stories of God’s wonders.
If we could focus on who — the Jesus in us and who He’s making us into — then the do will come without having to wonder or figure things out. A beautiful life will unfold that we don’t have to push or pry or agonize over. Then, who we become will be all about Who did the work in us and through us: Jesus.
Let’s be human beings, more focused on our identity and whose we are, not on what we do.
Jesus calls everyone to turn from their sins and be saved.
Jesus empowers us by the Holy Spirit to be disciples.
Jesus teaches His disciples to be fishers of people.
Pray to be filled up to overflowing by the Holy Spirit. Allow His presence to take over. As His Spirit then flows over into the world out of you, then you’ll see you are who He says you are as you do exactly what He wants you to do.
I know the Lord is always with me. I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me. No wonder my heart is glad, and I rejoice. My body rests in safety. For you will not leave my soul among the dead or allow your holy one to rot in the grave. You will show me the way of life, granting me the joy of your presence and the pleasures of living with you forever.
Psalm 16:8-11 (NLT)
He doesn't need me to do anything FOR Him, only WITH Him. -Stephanie Bryant: Click To Tweet Leave a Comment
Becoming Who God Created You To Be. says
Whoosh! I loved loved loved this. Thank you for sharing Stephanie!
Stephanie Bryant says
Thank you, Bomi! I love the “whoosh!”
Bev @ Walking Well With God says
I want to be following Jesus so closely that He can feel my breath on His neck. I want to be recognized as someone who has been with Jesus, abiding in His presence. I want to be a fisher of men/women. Less focus on the doing…more focus on the being still WITH Him. I needed this!! Beautiful!
Bev you need to listen to Stephanies podcast the Jesus led adventure! It has explained what happened to me the journey, Cambodia, a masters with distinction, the scholarships everything it’s all Gods work not me. I’m waiting for the next step for God to show his hand and for Jesus to lead me to my promised land. Please let me know what you think!
Hope your well, Jas xxx
Stephanie Bryant says
Hi Jas!! Thank you for being such a big cheerleader for my own Jesus Led Adventure! I’m incredibly humbled that God is using me to help you on your own adventure with Him.
Kathleen Burkinshaw says
Thank you so very much. I needed to read this today. Your words of faith spoke to my heart and felt like a gentle hug for my soul. I can exhale when I remember WHO it is for and that it is not through me,but Jesus. ❤
Stephanie Bryant says
Big exhale, right? So glad you can take a deep breath, Kathleen. Let Him fill you and lead you.
Kathleen Burkinshaw says
Yes, indeed.Thank you ❤
Beth Williams says
Such a rally cry. Society is always looking at what & how much we do. As Christians we should not be concerned with that or man’s applause. We need to focus on who/whose we are. Our prayers should be Lord what do You want me to do? How can I bring you glory in everyday living? My focus is on being the best person I can while showering this world with the light of Jesus. We won’t miss His plan for our lives if we simply stay in communication with & focusing on Him. Keep using the talents He gave you for His kingdom. Don’t worry about man’s applause. You should be waiting to hear “Well done thou good & faithful servant”.
For He will show me the way of life. Thank you so much for sharing your heart whiles read Gods I received a peace in my heart.
Such a timely reminder. I had just been thinking about finally getting around to my ‘must do’ task of seeking direction for the way ahead, having no clear idea at all and anxious that I don’t! We spend so much time striving and worrying, when every moment is a gift and invitation to just BE with God.
Stephanie it’s so obvious to me God has blessed you with a talent for writing and leading. For a long time He has spoken through you to me. It’s opened up a deeper understanding a different way more than just going to a church. It’s deepened a yearning for being in the flow of Gods plan. Partnering with God and Not just praying to him. It’s handing it my life, future, health, mental health too over to God. It’s harder to do this than just saying it.
But I feel safe. I feel loved. I feel ok with myself. Of course I still have anxieties, doubts thoughts of whether I’m worthy but after all said and done God and Jesus have met me where I am. Faults and all they still want me. Not because of what I can offer but because of who Jesus is.
God is using you. I’m following my Hesus led adventure and many here can attest to what miracles have happened for me. I’m in a season of waiting again, a pit stop to learn more. Patience has not been my strongest point however when God moves boy is it grand!!
Keep churning out these posts and your podcast I honestly glean so much from them!
Stephanie Bryant says
I’m going to print out your comment and hang it up in my office!! You bless me so much, Jas!! Thank you for taking the time to share these precious and much needed words with me.
I’m finally slowing down..enjoying my days. my life is still super busy daily but it’s all how you handle the journey !! my kids are happy..my home is clean and I’m able to just go thru it a little slower paced.
God changed my life around a few years ago and at the time I had no idea how to handle it…years later it was a blessing. he often simply puts us where we are to be..and that’s enough .
Linda Shukri says
This is exactly where I am! And what I needed to hear from someone else for the encouragement! To do things the way I should do them and not try to be like others. To first be Christ-like, and let Him lead and direct my endeavors. Thank you so much!
thanks for this…I was starting to think I was the only one who didn’t have “the WORD OF THE YEAR”! 🙂 I’m sure it works for many…even the non-Christians around seem to be intent on the idea. But my life seems to need more definition than one word will cover!
Thank you for this message today… It’s my Birthday today & I didn’t have any resolutions for the beginning of the year, & that’s ok. The word came, to ABIDE in Christ. That is my word for the year.
Lord, thank you for today. Help me live so I can be a reflection of you in me.