“All the world’s a stage” Shakespeare writes. I think of it optimistically, like a playground waiting to be discovered. But life doesn’t always turn out that way, does it?
There is another line that resonates with me more than Shakespeare’s. It’s the first line of Rick Warren’s The Purpose Driven Life. He reminds us, “It’s not about you.”
The phrase ping-pongs through my mind during the tough times.
My son has boundless passion and genuine curiosity-a steadfast purposefulness that will make him into the man you can rely on to get a job-any job-D.O.N.E. He’s the child who will one day be the kind of man who is not easily swayed by culture and who stands up for what is right but whose heart bleeds for the burdens of others. But today, he runs amuck and my nearsightedness crumples me. I wonder if the training and the praying, and the teaching-and all the ways I fail him-will ever end.
When the evening comes, I collapse into the nearest chair and rest my head in my hands. I hear it again. “It’s not about you.” If I'm focused on an overnight result to prove myself I will fall short every time.God's concerned with my stewardship, but the results are always up to Him.
This morning, I have to call my husband after he has left for the day. I want to explain that I was up all night with all 3 boys-that I’m frazzled by weariness. I want to tell him all my excuses for this morning-about why I was so impatient and unreasonable-and demanding-to explain that I was spent. He should own up to his part too-to come to me first and apologize. To just be sensitive enough to see that I am exhausted and show me grace.
As I dial, the Holy Spirit reminds me, “It’s not about you.” And when my husband’s voice connects on the other end, I simply say, “I’m sorry I snapped at you, that I was impatient and frustrated. I should have handled it much better and talked calmly so we could find a good compromise for us both. Please forgive me.” It's not about changing my husband-my role is to work on the places within my own heart that need refinement. And there is more than enough there for me to focus on.
When I go for my routine checkup and the doctors tell me that they need to send a sample to pathology…”cancer”…and I try not to consider the “What if?” I ask myself, how can I spend the next 3 weeks waiting? How do I gulp down FEAR and the worst case scenario?
Then it whistles through my thought-life weaving and dodging in between fear and resilience, “It’s not about you.” My life was never my own. Bought with a price. I can be still and know that He is God.
It’s a fallen sinful world. We will have trials here. But this is only the preface of our story. And although we each have a stage and lines to say, the plot is never about us.
We are a foreshadowing of what is to come-little lights pointing the way to the Star of the show. Trust the script that you have been given. The ending is one of victory, hard-fought for and won. And even though it’s not about us, though we scattered and ran when the villain appeared, God brings us onstage after the curtains drop and He urges us to take a bow. Undeserved. Unmerited. Unconditionally loved. The ultimate plot twist. One that empowers us to keep doing the right thing. Training our kids up in righteousness, humbling ourselves before others, and trusting God in our most fearful trials.
Remember the ending, friends, and play your part well.
Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price. Therefore glorify God with your body. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
For I know what I have planned for you,’ says the Lord. ‘I have plans to prosper you, not to harm you. I have plans to give you a future filled with hope. Jeremiah 29:11
YOUR TURN! Do you also become fearful or frustrated when the scenes of the play of your life don’t go the way you want them to?
If this post blessed you, please SHARE it with others! I love to hear your comments!!
Follow me on Facebook for more inspiration and discussion! Find me on Twitter: Amber Lia and Instagram: MotherOfKnights. Start pinning on Pinterest as well! View an Exciting Reality Show Life By Design, A TV Project with Lisa Leonard, Holley Gerth, and Dee Kasberger!