by Annwen Stone
I love starting things. I love the process of having a vision and then putting things into place to see that vision into fruition. It happened on the last house we bought. It was a wreck. No-one would touch it. Built in 1926 it had been extended in 3 different places and had received little updating since the 80’s. I walked in on the first showing, naive, full of creative vision and could imagine the stripped pine floors, the log fire burning and the Christmas tree hung with beautiful decorations. Unfortunately I learnt in that process that vision is great but there are A LOT of steps in a remodeling process and getting a house to that place. Steps that involve cost, sacrifice and grit. I realized something in that remodeling journey. I want the finished product but I actually don’t enjoy finishing things. I get bored. I want to move on to the next new thing. I’m one of those crazy people that enjoys change (mostly). I suppose that’s why Andy (my husband) and I could move continents with 3 children and a Jack Russel terrier.
I follow on Instagram a body coach. His page is so inspiriting because it takes normal people who are desperate to lose weight and change their figure and puts them through a straightforward daily plan of eating and exercise that they have to follow. He advocates throwing away the scales and instead taking photos of the change. Honestly it’s remarkable. Some of the testimonials of peoples lives over just a 3 month process are astounding. BUT here’s the thing: it wasn’t the vision that got them the results. It was the daily choice of surrender to a practical, accountable plan. They didn’t get transformation because they believed it could happen; they actually did something repeatedly which brought about that transformation.
In 2 Corinthians 3:18 it says
And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
The call on our lives as disciples is transformation. We are not expected by the Father to stay the same. We are expected to grow daily into the likeness of Jesus.
To illustrate, it’s like I’m the house that needs remodeling. Now I’m completely loved as that broken down house and there’s and no condemnation over my broken places BUT as I contemplate on Jesus, who He is, how He loves and what He does I recognize by the revelation of the Holy Spirit there’s some serious gaps! There’s places where steps need to be in place for change to occur. There are places that need discipline and kindness to bring this about.
Recently the Father showed me that it was the daily “grit” steps that I had put in place that were bringing the healing and transformation that were needed in an area of my life. We hear a lot from Pastor Chad, “Its the boring that brings the breakthrough.” and for a girl that likes new things and beginnings that phrase doesn’t inspire me with joy. However, he is right. About 7 weeks ago the Father asked me to give him the first hour of every day and to walk or run alone with for another hour in that same day. This simple plan has changed my friendship with God and subsequently me. The active discipline of solitude initially was hard, really hard. I could have found 10 excuses daily on why I couldn’t do it. My soul screamed out for company and connection with others (even if just on social media) but as the time has gone on I now honestly feel like I can’t live without it. The Fathers voice has got so much louder. I have no agenda in that time apart from contemplating on Him. Asking him what’s on his mind and being honest about what’s on mine. It’s true friendship. Not rushed, not works driven. I’m no longer just going to him for my marching orders but I have discovered what it means to be a daughter. The daily process can be a grind but it brings beautiful results.