If you are like me, you have a favorite pair of jeans and at least one favorite tee-shirt. My favorite pair of jeans are faded and the front thighs are worn to the point that they could rip any day now, but they are soooo comfortable. The same with the tee–it’s been worn and washed so many times you can no longer read the writing on the front but it’s incredibly soft. I actually catch myself, a grown man, looking forward to the day of the week that I get to wear them!
Does this sound familiar? I suspect that I am not the only one who is most comfortable in their oldest clothes. In fact, for many of us, our daily lives have become like our favorite jeans–very comfortable. It’s not that we haven’t experienced heartache or loss periodically, that’s part of life, but rather that we have slipped into our routine like our jeans one leg at a time and in doing so have become very comfortable.
Perhaps you are thinking about now that after your tumultuous early years or a particularly rebellious phase, you are thankful for a little routine. There is certainly nothing wrong with routine per se nor being comfortable in our lives. Yet, it’s important to evaluate where we are in life by where we are in relation to God’s plan for our lives not in relation to where we have been.
We generally measure our lives by the yardstick of the past and what we have experienced to arrive at this point. We may have overcome major obstacles to reach what now appears to be a stable life, but according to God’s divine plan for our lives we may still have miles to go (and even greater hurdles) before we can truly enjoy God’s blessings. God measures our lives according to our potential not our past and our potential most assuredly lies ahead of us.
Often times we are so comfortable in the garment of our lives that when we do branch out into something new we simply try to patch it into our old routine. This approach may be holding us back from achieving our full potential. In Scripture, Jesus reminds us when we patch an old garment with new unshrunk cloth the old fabric tears worse.
What does this mean for us? It means that sometimes we have to throw out our old favorites in order to achieve our full potential. It means sometimes the good is actually the enemy of the great. Rather than patching in new cloth here and there, we have to periodically look to change the fabric of our lives according to God’s plan. That’s not to say that we should all upend our lives for the sake of change but rather that we should always prayerfully evaluate our lives and our growth according to God’s will. More often than not, a new greater garment awaits us when we slip into something less comfortable!