Wednesday, January 2, 2013

What is your strategy?

On my personal blog and in my real life, I'm all about having "more passion and less fuss". It's the tagline of my blog and it's the way I live every day. It's all about finding little pointers and "work-arounds" that free up my time and my spirit to do the things I love most. I don't want to spend my hours doing things that don't bring life to me, my family, or the people I'm called to invest in.

To put it simply, these things are my strategy. I have strategies for most everything I do. I don't live by lots of rules or red tape or should do's or guilt. But, I do work to know what works for me, what doesn't work for me, and what gives or takes life. I want to practically roll around in the abundant life God promises us, making the things that aren't life-giving less and less a hassle. To me, that's freedom.

I don't do it all. I don't even do a lot that people would expect me to do. I don't even do a lot that I "should"do. But, I do make sure to move in the way the Lord nudges. I try to make sure that I'm not overdone and frazzled and up to my eyeballs in stress because I'm working and living in ways that aren't fruitful for my family or my mental/physical/spiritual health. I want to be sure to be available when He says "move".

I think of the holidays, about how important it is to build in time to stop and really see the beauty of what God did. I think of how, if we let it, the tiny things become the BIG THINGS. The presents, and the busy, and the parties, and the stress, and the running around become the focus and burden of the season. We have to actively work at making sure the first thing is the first thing.

And that is how I see strategy, too. We already know our first thing, to make much of the Lord. But, what is your second thing? What is your third thing? What are the things that give you life instead of steal it?

Your strategy, then, would be to minimize the life-stealers (maybe that's Twitter, or packing lunches, or having a high upkeep wardrobe) in order to focus on the life-givers (maybe that's writing your heart out, or making sure you're home to see your kid get off the bus, or traveling overseas).

You can have a grocery shopping strategy that saves your hard earned cash, doesn't take you 3 days, and allows you to shop with your kids in tow (I have such a strategy). You can have a budget strategy that allows you to be debt free and adopt a heartful of kids. You can have a laundry strategy that keeps your dirty pile of clothes from running your life and causing massive guilt (I do NOT have such a strategy).

All that to say, strategy doesn't have to be about making money or keeping up with other people online or even having an online presence at all. Having a strategy is just a way to get from Point A to Point B with the least amount of you save that energy for the BIG THINGS.

Say, you feel the Lord tugging on your heart to move to an urban area. Well, you may want a plan--a strategy. Maybe you save money for the move by selling one of your cars, since more things will be within walking distance. Maybe you'll be involved in an urban gardening initiative to stave off longings for your own plot of land. Maybe you'll intentionally move into a neighborhood to work out what it means to live in community.

Say your husband feels led to leave his job and head to seminary? Maybe you'll both work part-time to make ends meet. Maybe you'll save for a year before he leaves his stable job. Maybe you'll move closer to family in order to have support.

We're about seeing you succeed in the things God has put in your heart to succeed in. We would hate for you to look back on this time and feel like you've frittered it away. We also know that the Lord isn't leading everyone in the same way, and we would never dream that success looks like a cookie cutter. In the Network, we aim to help you recognize what looks like success to you in this season. And then we hope to resource you to find that success.
Success may look like managing to stay sane with 4 kids (I'll let you know how that goes for me!). Success may look like finally finding a like-minded community. Success may look like making a dent in a social need in your community. Success may be documenting your family's moments and stories. Success may mean working to support your family for a season. 

Ultimately, where the Lord directs you will be sweet success. We just aim to come alongside you and make the ride a bit smoother, if we can. We want you to bask in freedom that can come from maximizing what the Lord is already doing in your life and minimizing the small things that can distract.
We are so honored by the women who are joining this community, and invite you to jump in with a monthly or lifetime membership.

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