Growing up, my family always went on vacation to the beach in the summer. Always. In fact, for years at a time, we stayed at the same resort…except for that one summer where my mom thought it would be “fun” to do something different and we ended up at a hotel called the Rockin’ B Resort. Oh, the memories. Back to the beach. We would leave out really early on a Saturday morning and stay for a week. It was glorious. Many of my favorite childhood memories were left in the sand on the beaches of Panama City Beach, Florida.
Fast forward from my childhood to married life. Guess what my husband and I did for the first five years of our marriage?!? Yep. You guessed it. We went to the beach. We went in the summer from Saturday to Saturday because that’s what you do for vacation, right?
I remember the moment like it was yesterday. I was planning our summer beach vacation and it dawned on me:
We don’t have to go to the beach in the summer for a week.
In fact, we don’t have to go to the beach at all.
This sounds so simple, but for me, it was extremely profound and utterly freeing. You see, going to the beach in the summer was an unwritten expectation that I had placed on myself. I just thought this was how it was supposed to be, because this was the only reality I had ever known.
What about you? Do you have unwritten expectations?
I really want you to stop and think. Are there traditions, pressures that you put on yourself just because you can’t imagine life differently?
4 Simple Steps To Gain More Clarity
Honestly seek God and ask Him if this is what He has for you.
Evaluate your motives.
Take a look inside at your heart and ask some hard questions:
Is this God’s best for me?
Am I doing this out of a sense of obligation, fear, or pride?
Seek wise counsel.
People walking ahead of us can give us great wisdom. Ask someone who is walking with Jesus for his or her opinion or biblical guidance.
Change your perspective.
Stop and think about the big picture. Think about the world as a whole, not just the corner where you live.
Letting go of going to the beach seems really simple doesn’t it? I can not tell you how freeing it was. Layers upon layers of burden began to melt off of me as I discovered, not just what I would do for vacation, but who I was and who God wanted me to be. He didn’t call me to recreate my childhood for my children. He has called me to be the best wife and mother that I can be with the skills that he has given me, for His glory. You know what I discovered? My family really likes hiking. I mean, we really like it.
Please know, if God hadn't used this experience to reveal to me some things about my life, I'd still be sitting on a beach
every summer. That would be fine, but it wouldn't be the best life God called me to live. The joy wouldn't compare to the joy and experiences we have today. What about you?? Are you sitting on a beach somewhere because you think that's what you are supposed
to do? Let go of expectations and start living the life God has called you to live!
Jennifer and her family live in the South. She and her husband, Fred, have three boys ages 13, 10, and 7, and one unruly dog named Dash. Chaos2Peace is a blog designed to bring peace in the midst chaos by providing organizational tips, menu planning, simple recipes, and a whole lot of laughter. Join us on the blog today as we do life together, one step at a time.
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