We say it all the time: I deserve more than this. And honey, I feel you! I have been down in the valley trying to get home (if you not from Mississippi, you won’t get that joke). The longer my stay in the valleys, the smaller I have become, telling myself what I can do without and what can wait–convincing myself that what I needed was unimportant, and I could take another L for the greater good.
The Bible says (and it is my #1 verse) that:
Wisdom is the principal thing; in all your getting get wisdom. Get an understanding.
And the understanding that I have now is that there is a difference between being unselfish and self sacrificing. God never asked anybody to self sacrifice–even Jesus volunteered (before He ever walked the earth; you need to go to somebody’s bible class). All God asked was for us to willingly walk in His plans for us. And His plans don’t call for us to lay on the altar of life to be slain and miserable. In fact, God’s plan is for us to have more so we can bless others more.
But we have to be conditioned to receive more.
I hear you asking, “How, Sway?” Glad you asked.
First, you must know God. And I am not talking about knowing religion. I personally am really good at knowing religion cuz I’m smart (I have no shame), I like patterns (my personality is rigid and loves patterns), and I LOVE systems (cuz I like stuff to be the same all the time). Religion fits me tailor made, my dudes. Unfortunately, God isn’t religion. You can most definitely learn about God there, but it’s just a stepping stone. Knowing God comes from building a relationship with God–spending quality time with God, going through stuff with God, talking with God–like you do people.
In getting to know God, you get to knowing yourself. Real well. Because God is perfect, God will show you the parts of yourself that are just like God already; but then God will also show you them parts that need to get like God. The broken parts. The ugly parts. The parts that need to be tweeked. The parts that need to be repurposed. The parts that you just need to let of. God will show you all of you; then God will show you how to use it all for God’s glory–and to your benefit. Which of course will benefit others because God loves us all and wants us all to be great.
Anyway, the conditioning starts there. What do you desire? What are you afraid of? What do you think you need? What are you good at? What have you been blessed with? Why are you asking for what you asking for? Somewhere in that jumble of stuff that is you is all that you need. And God is never asking you to fall on a sword. God is asking you to use what Gos created when God created you:
Your mouth. Start speaking the more that you want and why. The word declares that we love by the fruit of our lips. Your words are seeds that you harvest from.
Your hands. One of my favorite stories is when Moses is standing at the Red Sea asking God what to do. God says, “BRUH. Why are you even talking to me? WHAT IS IN YOUR HAND?” Moses had his staff; but God is saying the same thing to us every day: what did God give you to work with?
Your relationships. Issa sticky spot, no? But the word also declares that we are blessed from the bosoms of men. If your relationships always yield the same results, always deplete you, always keep you stuck, always leave you empty, change them joints. And I am not necessarily advocating for you to cut off everybody (though sometimes you may need to); I am saying that maybe you need to meet new people or change the ways in which you interact. Boundaries and expectations are a thing you have a right to.
God wants more for you, but you gotta know that God also wants to co-create with you. Manna don’t fall from the sky anymore because God gave you the ability to do what God does: make manna. You first need to believe that God wants you to eat and feed other people, too. Moses didn’t just raise his hand to save himself. Joseph didn’t just become a ruler in Egypt to save himself. Deborah didn’t just sit and judge to hype herself. Solomon didn’t just ask for wisdom for himself. Jesus didn’t jump on the cross to prove himself.
Okay. Sorry. Back to the topic at hand.
Condition yourself for more. Open up your heart to believing you should have more. Prepare yourself for the responsibility of more. God is looking to use you. But God cannot use someone who is laid up on the altar of self sacrifice. Jesus died once and for all. So there’s no need for you to hop up on the cross!
Beloved. Get down. Love God. Love on yourself enough to see what God sees in you. Then start conditioning yourself receive it.