- Sarah Nicholson
- Malindi, Kenya
- This blog used to be about me and my new husband starting our life together in Brookhaven, Georgia. Now, 8 years, 3 children, and 1 trans-continental move later, I'm writing for me; to document the emotional and spiritual journey I am on so that I don't forget the paths I have traveled in my heart and mind.
Thursday, March 9, 2017
I wrote this on February 26, right after attending If: Nairobi.
I think I am going to try a little experiment on myself. This past weekend I went to the IF:Nairobi conference, and it was AMAZING. I learned so much, was encouraged until my cup overflowed, and met some beautiful women. As I sat and processed everything I had learned, I also did a little reading in the book "Nothing to Prove" by Jennie Allen. Two thoughts continued to swirl around in my head: 1) I want to stop striving for BIG noteworthy accomplishments and just seek out small acts of kindness in the name of Jesus, but I never seem to know where to start. 2) I still struggle so much with wanting to find my identity in something I can be good at or recognized for, or just to say, "Hi, I am Sarah, and I am a __________."
And then it hit me- these two things are related. One is causing (or preventing) the other. What if my striving for identity and notoriety is preventing me from hearing the Spirit speak to me, saying, "Sarah, just start here, this person could use a friend."
I prayed this prayer: "Dear God, I want to do the small things for you, I just need you to nudge me in the right direction. I'm not an initiator. I don't see opportunities all around me like Chris does. I can't see the forest because of all the trees in the way. Please show me grace and give me nudges and clues in the right direction. I know that any good deed done in your name brings you honor, but I am overwhelmed at the need around me. Just please, narrow it down for me, Lord."
Then I continued to read and this line hit me: "The degree to which we believe and embrace our identity as a Spirit filled child of God will be the degree to which His light shines through us."
What if I stopped looking for ways to find identity and worth? Would I have an easier time seeing the opportunities God has put in front of me to be a light for Him? My hypothesis is that yes, I would. So I am going to put that hypothesis to the test.
Every time I notice someone else's talents or accomplishments and find myself wishing I was good at that or had accomplished that, I am going to say this to myself, "Whew, I'm so glad I'm not good at that because I might be tempted to put my identity in that instead of in Christ." And then I will carry on living my life and looking for small ways to serve Him- I sure don't want to do anything big, because my identity would then shift to that thing which would sooner or later pass away.
No, I will do the small things and leave the big things to God. He can take my loaves and fish and feed 5,000 and nobody, including me, will think it was me who did it. And that is just the way it should be.