His Grace over my Grind
EntrepReneur: a person who organizes and manages any enterprise, especially a business, usually with considerable initiative and risk.
OK. So it’s NOT a new word. It’s been around since the 18th century. But “entrepreneur” has only been an active party of my vocabulary over the past five years. According to Merriam Webster, the word entrepreneur simply means “a person who starts a business and is willing to risk loss in order to make money.” Whether it carries an additional connotation of “far-sightedness and innovation”? Well, the answer, perhaps unsatisfactorily is… it can go either way.
By the early 20th century, entrepreneur appears to have taken on the connotation of go-getter when applied to an independent business owner. A quality that may also be found in the phrase entrepreneurial spirit, which began being used at about the same time. By all definitions of entrepreneur–I fit the bill. My husband and I have started a church, and built a multi-million dollar business. We have written books and created online courses for people to grow in their faith, family and through their “freak-outs.” That definitely takes a little go-getting.
I’ve often been asked, “How? How do you do it?” And this is where my recent rub comes in. Is it a how or is it who? I’d love to take credit for setting up structural tension, with a path for where I am and where I want to be. I profess the tenacity of filling in all the middle with massive action. I did and do that. I’d love to say that it’s the consistent choice of showing up daily, not sweating the small stuff, staying connected to my WHY and acting my way into feeling on the regular. I did and do that too. But I believe Merriam Webster is right. All that can go either way.
Others have put in the same work, had the same tenacity, applied similar grit, yet their story may not be the same. There is a fine line between self-determined and self-dependence. My determination and my grit enables me to get a lot done. But, God. Those two words are the grace over my grind. It’s impossible for me to take all the credit. The very reason I set out to “go-get” was a stirring and a calling which led in a direction that God designed for me. I said “YES.” But, God. God gave the guidance. I just obeyed. And the truth still remains: life can go either way.
“Glory will destroy all of us. Glory is for God.” ~Havilah Cunnington
As I have been reflecting on the final words of Jesus in this Holy week, His radical surrender does not escape me.
“Then Jesus shouted, “Father, I entrust my spirit into your hands!” And with those words he breathed his last.”
Jesus could have saved Himself. He was not a victim. His death was was not tragedy, but choice. All-powerful, all-knowing, all-tenacity and determination. But, God.
He was entrusting it all to God. He knew that even in death, His life would be in the best hands of all when it was entrusted into the hands of God.
No matter who you are, your history, your hang ups–life happens. And the world hollers, “If you’ll just do this or that, your life will be rich and full, and you’ll get your act together. Plan it out, budget your time, and optimize your life.”
MAYBE. But the power is not within your SELF. Being self-determined is good, but self-dependence is a dangerous and slippery slope. The purposes and plans for Jesus were not found in in what everyone else THOUGHT it would be. He lived His purpose by entrusting Himself to the hands of God–day in and day out.
Is all this “self-help” just self-glorification? Have we really convinced ourselves that we are the architects of this life that GOD created, and that WE control our own destiny? Sure, we can change our habits and make healthy choices, but our souls only change when we encounter God. Does all this self-help prompt us to stop and ask God for help? Or does it leave us too busy pulling ourselves up by our bootstraps to stay knelt in prayer?
I believe in bettering myself with practical, daily action steps. I’m all about goal setting and time management. But I also believe that while I can plan, pursue and persist in this life, it is NOT by might, NOT by power, but by HIS Spirit that I thrive and live and overcome.
I believe the Gospel points my restless heart to that which truly satisfies. The real power for the life you want rests in the nail-pierced hands of Jesus. I must loosen my grip on the pursuit of “improving” my own life, in my own power, and hold tightly to Him instead. He has nail-scarred hands so He can never take his mind off me. This is where your soul will find that which it is searching for. This is the grace over your grind.