Thursday, December 29, 2011


A Devotional by Margot Cioccio

Hebrews 2 (AMP)

 1SINCE ALL this is true, we ought to pay much closer attention than ever to the truths that we have heard, 
lest in any way we drift past them and slip away.

I wanted to talk about drifting. The currents and the pulls of the carnal world are such that if we are not consciously moving towards God and his kingdom we are likely drifting away.  I like to watch people and I sometimes see subtle changes and choices being made that in the moment seem irrelevant but over time will spin them off down the path of least resistance.  People who at one time walked together towards similar goals and plans,  little by little one small choice at a time find themselves going completely different directions. One day they will wake up and scratch their heads and wonder how did I end up here. This is something that is often easy to see happen in marriages. It is not usually one big thing that is the straw that breaks the camels back. It is the subtle shifts of direction and purpose. Quite often if you are not spending time in the word and in prayer seeking God for his direction then you are likely grabbing at straws and thinking here's an opportunity lets give that a try, maybe God will bless it. When perhaps we should be asking will this choice bring me closer or farther away from God.

As you are moving towards the New Year when everyone seems to be making grand proclamations and resolutions to change or fix some part of their life.  Many will resolve to loose weight or quit smoking only to find after about 4- 6 weeks that they somehow lacked the resolve to really make the change. (Just a quick side note - that is where a coach comes in really handy. You decide where you want to go and a coach helps keep you accountable. I am available and I do have room to add some coaching allies. Some folks need help discovering the direction they want to go - I can help with that too.)

I guess my thought is that you take some time to examine what it is that you value and to take some time to make sure that you are heading in the direction you want to be heading. Perhaps you have made some subtle shifts over the last year that are moving you towards a destination that is far from your intended course. Perhaps you have never given much thought to your intended course.
Take a bit of time and consider during your prayer time what God's direction for you life is and what choices it will take over time to arrive at that destination. It helps if you spin things out 3-5 years into the future.  I have an exercise that I do with some of my coaching clients called the Interview. Here a peek into it. 
The reporter has heard about you and how you now thrive at work and at home. So she thinks you would be perfect for the story. To prepare for the interview, she has sent you this list of initial questions that she would like you to answer before your interview.
Allow yourself time to think and dream as you respond to these questions.
Answer them in the way you would LOVE to be able to answer them... as if your wildest dreams have come true. Let your heart dream... let your imagination go... become a kid again... and have fun with it! Don’t let practicality take over... and don’t limit yourself.
At this point... it doesn’t have to be “realistic.” You don’t need to know HOW you got there at this point. Right now... it’s all about dreaming BIG!
So free yourself from any of that responsibility.
Just dream... think... pray... vision... and get creative!
See where it takes you! 

It asks you to describe your work space, and your ideal day, the types of people who are in your life. My favorite is question 7 It says " As I have dug into your story, it sounds like you made some small but significant shifts towards doing more of the things that you love to do about five years ago and that has made a big difference for you. What are a few things taht you would want people to learn from making this intentional shift towards doing more of what you were created to do?

These are great questions to help you discover what it is you would really like to be doing, the types of people you would like to be doing it with, and the kind of environment you would like to be doing it in.  So rather than a making some grand resolution take a look at what you love to do, what makes you happy, what are the things that make you say " Now this is what God created me to do and be". How can you do more of those things?

The path of least resistance is a great tool for moving in a direction - just make sure it is the direction you really want to be heading.  You need to be able to hold the reality of where you are currently and the vision of where you want to end up in your mind simultaneously.  It creates a structural tension that will help move you towards your destination it in a sense sets up the tracks or the rails to move you to where you want to go.  I believe that if you take the time with the Lord, He will help you to set the rails to move your life in the direction that will bring you satisfaction and fulfillment.

So as you head into the new year, I challenge you to make some protected time alone with the the Lord to talk about His plans, purposes, calling and direction for your life.  Are there some areas of "drift" where you have stopped being intentional in your daily walk with the Lord. 
Ask the Lord to help you lay the rails or tracks so that in the coming year you are moving more and more towards things that are part of His plan for you. 

Finally what are some of the things that bring you the most joy and satisfaction? Think about how you can do more of those kind of things in the coming year. 

Dear Lord, 
You know the plans that you have for each of us. I know that they are good plans to give us a hope and a future. Help us to see where we are drifting away from you and help us have the courage to make some subtle but significant shifts so that we are heading where you would have us head in the coming year. Lord help us to see that small things done with love can change the world. Help us to see the small changes that we could make that will impact our lives and the lives of those around us in a profound way over time.

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