When the Pursuit of Your Dream Becomes Selfish

his plans

“I went to the conference thinking there was a big pie and I had to get a piece. Then I realized God just makes a bigger pie.”

The author’s words struck me with clarity and I realized I had the same misconception about an invisible pie. When did I start making his work about me?

I felt convicted and relieved at the same time. How liberating to know my God was not limited by my own perception.

There is freedom in knowing I serve One who is not merely counting book contracts and numbers in attendance, but has a plan far higher than I can comprehend. Instead of thinking about myself, I want his plans to be carried out in all their fullness.

When we embrace God’s plans instead of our own, He is able to use us in ways we never dreamed possible.

I realized in the previous months, my dream had become about me. And when my dreams become about my needs, envy consumes my heart. I compare what others have to what I am lacking. Insecurities run high, and I doubt my ability to fulfill what God has for me.

I forget that it’s through my weakness that He makes me strong. I forget his power working in me is what will take me to new places. I become an insecure girl with nothing to give, and am unable to love people the way he desires.

Just one succinct statement about God making a bigger pie made me realize I had it all wrong. I thought about what it truly means to love and read one of the most frequently quoted chapters in the Bible, 1 Corinthians 13.

How often had I read this chapter and simply skimmed over the words, because I knew them so well? But the person who reads the words and does not do what they say cannot claim to love God.

This is what love does not look like:

It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 1 Corinthians 13:4-5

How often have I done these very things? How often do I claim to love Jesus, but harbor envy and grudges in my heart?

I don’t want to be a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal who is merely chasing after some invisible pie in the sky. I want to be a woman who reflects Jesus with my heart, soul and mind.

Instead of being one person in a crowd of hundreds trying to fulfill my own dream, my desire is to be part of a mosaic of people, each working to do more together than we could ever do on our own.

So today, instead of comparing myself to you, I join hands with you. I put my own selfish ambition aside because we are far better together than we are apart.

God’s kingdom is too important for me keep eyes focused only on my work.

His vision is far more reaching.

It is far more glorious.

 

*Linking up with Kelly Balarie & Friends and Holley Gerth to encourage and be encouraged. Come join us.

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33 thoughts on “When the Pursuit of Your Dream Becomes Selfish

  1. Thank you, Abby, for being transparent with your words and giving me something to think on for the future. Your writing is beautiful and encouraging! Blessings to you!

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  2. Thanks so much for your transparency, Abby. We can all relate! I so appreciate this: “My desire is to be part of a mosaic of people, each working together to do more together than we could ever do on our own.” That’s the body of Christ, isn’t it? And I’m so glad to be part of that mosaic together with you! Much love.

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  3. I hear you, sister! God has practically yelled at my stubborn heart “You do the process, I’ll do the results,” but I still pick up His end from time to time and run with it. So grateful there is grace for our well intentioned heart longings. He knows we are rushing toward His glory but get lost along the way. Here’s to reminding one another that God’s got this!! 🙂 Blessings dear friend and so, so glad that we aren’t in this alone.

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    • Oh yes, God has beat me over the head a few times when I didn’t get it. 😉 Sometimes that’s the only way I’ll listen, but I’m grateful he’s patient with me as well. I’m grateful for you, friend, and am always blessed by your heart and words.

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  4. Such a good reminder! Thank you! I loved the pie story, but I also loved this: “Instead of thinking about myself, I want his plans to be carried out in all their fullness.” Oh yes! I struggle with this too…so much! Blessings from #EspressosofFaith via #RaRaLinkup!

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  5. Beautiful, humble words from a lovely heart that wants to serve God most of all. Standing together with you as your words resonate. You are an encouragement, Abby. Cheering you on #RaRaLinkup

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  6. “How liberating to know my God was not limited by my own perception.” So good to hear today. I give up on dreams over and over because I think–I can’t do it. And guess what, I can’t! But how much better would it be to keep dreaming and to dream His heart for my life!

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    • Nope, I can’t do it either, Monika. That is my goal each day, for my dreams to become his for my life. Thanks so much for visiting today.

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    • That is my prayer too, Meredith. It is so easy to lose our focus as there are so many things in this world begging for our attention. But we ARE better together and women like you inspire me to reach for Him. xoxo

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  7. Your honesty is so refreshing. I’m sure we can all relate to this post on many different levels. I just had a long conversation with a couple of friends the other day about the demon of comparison and just how susceptible we all are to it regardless of where we are in our walk with God. Our saving grace as Christians though, fortunately, is that we’re able (usually) to catch ourselves and take those thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ. PRAISE GOD that He loves us so much and is such a patient, compassionate Teacher.

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  8. Reblogged this on Reverent Devotion and commented:
    I read this article this afternoon from Fearfully Made Mom and it really got me. Not only the unbridled honesty of the author, Abby McDonald, but the fact that she touched on so many challenges that we all face as Christians. We all need a reminder from time to time in our busy lives of exactly what it is we’re working towards… Give this a read.

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  9. I have some of these same fears and thoughts at times as well. It’s so good when we realize and remember we are all working together for His glory and revealing His Truth and Grace through the written word. Thank you for your great words of encouragement! You are a blessing, girlfriend!

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  10. Love the title. You’re getting better and better on those.
    Nodding my head on this —> “I forget that it’s through my weakness that He makes me strong. I forget his power working in me is what will take me to new places. I become an insecure girl with nothing to give, and am unable to love people the way he desires.”
    I’m one of those girls, too. Thank God that He is stronger, more capable, loving, and faithful. Good post, Abby. Joining via #coffeeforyourheart

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  11. I think you hit the nail on the head, Abby. Sometimes it’s so difficult to give up our own dreams, especially when we can’t see what God has planned for us. I know He wants to receive the glory and He cannot do so unless He’s the one who does the work. I guess that’s the meaning of the phrase “Let go and let God.” Love, mom

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  12. Abby, I just have to tell you that I have drank in your words at least ten times. Most of the time while in the office so I couldn’t respond. Thank you for giving voice to my heart’s cry. Loved this so much.

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