Challenge

I’ve recently found myself taking a new perspective on challenges.

I kind of like them.

I even get excited about them.

I’m  not talking about an especially hard math problem or a hard-to-beat game. I’m talking about some big, life-altering challenges.

I’ve heard it said that people are creatures of habit, that we don’t really like change. Though this may be true, I can’t say that I really fit into this category. I enjoy change. I like things to be different than they once were. I like to do new things, go new places, and re-arrange my living room quite often. But, despite all that, it can be hard to bring new changes, and new challenges, into our lives. We get set in what we believe and how we live and to even think of another possibility sounds, well, exhausting.

So why bother?

Conviction. I have found that a challenge born out of conviction is worth tackling. It is worth getting up earlier or going to bed later. It is worth changing the way you think or the way you live. It is worth the weird looks and whispered remarks of people who don’t understand. It is worth it all, because Christ has called me to do it.

I can remember in the past when I felt a twinge of conviction on a subject that I wasn’t very fond of, and I just ignored that conviction. Surely God would understand that I cannot make such a drastic change in my life. I would even avoid articles and conversations on such topics so that I could stay “ignorant” on the issue.

Not anymore.

I believe that the best place to be is in obedience to God. I read in another blog the other day (sorry, I didn’t save it and I don’t know who wrote it) that any motive that isn’t obedience to God is a sin. So if God is calling me or my family to something and we ignore it, even for a “good reason”, we are still in sin.

So when I feel that twinge of conviction, I work hard not to ignore it. I pray about it and instead of saying “I could never do that” I say “with Christ ALL things are possible.”

My next few posts will be about some of the challenges and changes we are facing these days. Please understand that my heart is not to offend anyone. These things are what God has convicted our hearts on and I do not judge you for not making the same decisions. I do, however, want to encourage you to have an open mind. Don’t be so quick to assume that you can’t do something just because it is difficult or unpopular.

Many of the things we are still working on, or just beginning to work on, and I know the challenges before us will be hard and we may even falter in our convictions.

I also know that there are bound to be many more challenges come our way and I pray that I will always have an open mind, and open heart, to the conviction of the Holy Spirit.

Even as I write this I struggle with the conviction to even talk about some issues. It would be easier, after all, to not talk and not risk offending or hurting my friends. Yet it was through other people’s testimonies that God brought conviction to my heart on many of these issues, and so I feel I too should share what God has taught me.

I know your minds are reeling to know what challenges I could possibly be talking about.

Well, I’m not going to tell you…just yet.

Ok, I’ll give you a short preview of my next post.

It is on the challenge of being fully “Christ-like” during holiday celebrations (like the most recent, Halloween).

And just so you don’t think I’m going to tell you we never celebrate anything of the sort…

Emma and Paige dressed as bat girls and Olivia as a monkey.

So, are you ready to face some ideas that may challenge you? Do you feel up to some thought-provoking, life-changing convictions? If so, stay tuned! I’m excited (and nervous) about writing this Challenge Series.

Oh, and one more thing. These are my convictions, my thoughts, my words. If you want a more reliable source to base your decisions on, read the Bible and talk to God.

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