unfinished2

So far in this series we have talked about inspiration and being in the hills and valleys of life – we cherish the good times on the mountaintop and traverse the valleys while we learn and grow in Him.  But what about the other times – the in between times?  Those times when we are chugging along, carrying out our day-to-day tasks, and wondering if there is more to our lives.  Asking ourselves and God, “Why am I here? What is my purpose?” ….. feeling like you’re here to make a difference but just aren’t sure how.  Feeling like your life is somehow unfinished……..

unfinishedThere are times in my painting journey where I haven’t finished the assigned painting in the allotted time or I have “finished” it, but it isn’t reflective of the picture I had in my mind – in the moment, I feel like there are some details that need refining or need to be added.   I’ll step away from the painting for a day or two and re-evaluate.  Sometimes when I look at it again, I’m satisfied – I can look at it from a different perspective and see the beauty and uniqueness of my offering.  Sometimes, though, I want to make changes (touch-ups) or it is obvious (like this painting) that there is more work to do.

Just like in my painting journey, I sometimes feel the same way about my life — it’s an unfinished canvas and my life is half-written.  There are times when I either feel like I don’t have the guidance I’m seeking on which path to take or I’ve started a project or task given to me by my Heavenly Father, but I haven’t completed it – fear or insecurity or busyness or uncertainty seem to get in the way.  What about you?  Do you ever feel like your life is unfinished?

_Because he loves me,_ says the lord, _I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my

Fortunately for my paintings, there is an SOS class where I can bring it back and finish it with the help and assistance of the experts.  The “real” artist will provide guidance and actually step in sometimes to provide hands-on fixes.  This support and one-on-one attention is so helpful and gives me confidence that over time my painting will become a work of art touching other’s lives.

So the question is, how can we get an SOS class for the unfinished areas of our lives?   

 

| “…. let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:1b-2, NKJV)

We need to turn to the “author and finisher of our faith” for that support, love, and guidance — through prayer, reading His Word, fellowship with believers, and in many cases, moving outside our comfort zone to step into obedience to His direction.  I’m working through that right now — I want to be obedient to His guidance related to starting a business and a ministry, but it’s scary and I doubt that I have the talent, experience and reach to make it happen.  But what I have to remember is that “the reality is that the Lord never calls the qualified; He qualifies the called.” (Henry T. Blackaby).   I need to allow the “real artist” to guide me and by doing so, I can trust that “He who began a good work in [me] will carry it on to completion”!

Camping

Isn’t it wonderful that the “real artist” of our lives, Jesus Christ, provides guidance and support as we navigate through life’s journey — as we seek Him and abide in Him, He will help us finish (or keep moving toward) our calling.   

Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. (Proverbs 3:6 NLT)

He renews my strength.  He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name. (Psalms 23:3, NLT)

As we seek Him, we may be making minor touch-ups to a painting (refining) or we may be completing large areas (major steps to finish a task) — and even though it may not be easy and it may be scary, we can have strength in the knowledge that He is with us along the journey, helping us to create a masterpiece — impacting lives in a positive way and growing in faith and trust.

finished

I am working on touch-ups and some major overhaul on the masterpiece of my life – through more daily abiding in Him and stepping out into the unknown with my new venture.  Sometimes I wonder if I am too old to be starting a new business/ministry, but my life isn’t finished so neither are the tasks that God has set before me — as long as I have breath, I am serving God in whatever way He leads!

 

While my life isn’t finished, I can have such joy that Jesus followed through to completion.  We’re coming up on Easter when Jesus gave His life for us to wipe away our sins and bring those who believe into his family forever.  His last words upon the cross were “It is finished” (John 19:30) – while we know our journey to become more like Him and walk as He walked won’t be finished on this side of heaven, we do know that because He finished His task, He will be with us “until that day” and we will be with Him for eternity!  What a comfort and encouragement!

What task from Him are you finishing?  What help do you need?  What  has helped you?    Share with the community so we can encourage and build each other up…..

Remember, our tasks may not be easy, but “He started something good and He’s gonna complete it” — as you finish up, take a listen to Mandisa’s story and her song “Unfinished” about a time when she felt unfinished and in need of the “real Artist” to complete her masterpiece!

Mandisa’s “story behind the song

 

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