Have you ever found yourself going through life, day after day just going through the motions? You sense inside that you were meant for something bigger and greater, but you just haven’t gotten around to it yet. Maybe you’ve dabbled with the ideas for a while: a blog, a new career, a healthier lifestyle, a fulfilling relationship. Perhaps it’s time for you to take the leap and go all in!
I sometimes like to find new places for my prayer times. Being outside often helps me feel somehow more connected to God. I was exploring the campus of a nearby Catholic college for such a prayer-place and came across a cemetery for the Jesuit priests who had served faithfully at the school. The dates went way back into the early 1800s and as I walked among the grave markers, it felt like such sacred ground. Looking more closely at the tombstones, I noticed that instead of simply engraving a birth year and death year, there was a “middle date” or in Latin – Ingressus.
As I thought about it, I quickly deduced that this was the date they entered the priesthood. I thought about how at this moment in their lives, everything changed. They left their old life behind completely to enter into the life they were created to live – a life in service to God and others. This was no flippant decision, no small choice. It was an abandonment to immerse themselves into this life-choice. It was clearly the defining moment of their life – memorialized on their tombstone for generations of people to see.
How about you? Do you have a defining moment? Would you have a “middle date” that was so important it would need to be inscribed on your tombstone? What’s keeping you from going “all in”? Obviously, I’m not talking about going into the priesthood. (Unless, of course, that is your calling!) I’m talking about you making the decision to become your best self, to not hold back any longer, to abandon yourself to become everything you were created to be, using your gifts in service to God and others. Perhaps you’ve dreamed of a life like this, but you are just waiting for the right moment. Well, here are a few things I’ve discovered about the perils of waiting.
- Indecision often leads to no decision. William James said, “There is no more miserable human being than one in whom nothing is habitual but indecision.“
- Hesitation often leads to missed opportunities. What are you waiting on?
- Procrastination is the worst enemy of today’s possibilities and tomorrow’s successes. – I love what Karen Lamb said, “A year from now you may wish you had started today.”
To help you decipher what’s holding you back and how to move forward, answer the following three questions:
- Why am I waiting? Often, unfounded fears are floating around in our heads. Writing them down in a list is the first step to dealing with with indecision. Seeing them on paper (or your computer screen) often helps us to see that these fears are not insurmountable.
- What is the worst thing that could happen? Look at your list. What is the worst thing on it? How likely is that to really happen? Often, when we say it out loud, we realize it might even sound silly! Even if it did happen, could you overcome it if you had to?
- What is the best thing that could happen? This is the real key. What will you miss out on if you don’t “go all in?”
I love what Paul has to say about this: “Make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that…Each of you must take responsibility for doing the creative best you can with your own life” (Gal. 6:4-5, MSG). But don’t think I’m encouraging you to simply live selfishly, exclusively fulfilling your own desires. This is ultimately a question of service. Choose to make your life matter – abandon yourself to the calling to serve – using your God-created passions, giftings, and dreams to serve God and others. Go and make a real difference in the world.
My question to you is could today be the defining moment in your life? Is today your “middle date?” Don’t put it off any longer!
How about you? What helps you to move past points of indecision toward big-impact change?
Rodney Mills is a leader of leaders and founder of Centrifuge Leadership, offering the best in leadership development services, events, and coaching for executives and ministry leaders. His mission is to inspire, equip, and coach servant leaders that change the world. You can find out more about Rodney and Centrifuge by clicking here.