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My Part in Spiritual Growth

Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth. (2 Timothy 2:15 ESV)

I long to abide—to stay in deep fellowship with my God.

The thought of  holding on for a lifetime is wearying, but there is great, sustaining grace!

I teeter between devotion that fuels me forward for a while, followed by despair that my efforts didn’t take me further.

Do my best.

The trap of comparison strangles. If I spend too much time thinking I should be this or that—or her—I become paralyzed with all I am not.

I don’t need to be a full-time missionary, have gone to seminary, or homeschool my kids to be approved.

I am only to do my best. Right here. Right now.

God doesn’t expect me to be something I am not called to be. He only wants me to do my best—not someone else’s best—right where He has placed me.

Present myself to God.

What great and glorious grace I have been given! Thousands upon thousands of mercies He has extended me.

Oh, how I want to give all of me to thank Him!

And so, dear brothers and sisters,  I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice – the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. (Romans 12:1 NLT)

Every day—every moment—is an offering to Him.

Rightly handle the Word.

His Word is living. His Word is active. My bread and water for each day—an abundant source of life.

Read it. Study it. Know it.

Meditate on it.

These are the prerequisites to handling it rightly.

The longing for approval.

I long for approval—to hear those words: “Well done.”

So, I will do my best right where He has called me. I will live each moment as an offering of thanks.  I will strive to know and understand His Word which will guide the way forward.

I will be approved.

20 replies
  1. Ashlie
    Ashlie says:

    Katie –

    I love your heart. I so relate to this…the deep desire to grow and dig into Him but also the comparisons and what if’s that seem to pummel me. You’re right, it’s only what HE gives us and calls us to and just present ourselves as a living sacrifice – yes! I’m often guilty of longing for the approval of others more than His approval. His word always realigns!

    Thank you for sharing your heart! Love it 🙂 Visiting from Write It, Girl.

    Reply
  2. Nancy Franson
    Nancy Franson says:

    “Present myself to God.” The beauty of this command is that I don’t need to worry about getting my act together before presenting myself to Him. He knows me, with all my particular sins and temptations. He knows the areas of my life that continue to need His healing and cleansing work, and He meets me there.

    Reply
    • Katie
      Katie says:

      SO glad I don’t need to clean myself up to come to Him! He is so good to meet us where we are. Thanks for stopping by!

      Reply
  3. Rosann
    Rosann says:

    Do my best. Powerful words for me as lately God is tapping me on the shoulder daily to remind me that perfectionism is not what He expects from me. Yet for some reason I feel I won’t be accepted unless I’m perfect, so I continue to strive toward it. In fact, I went to a women’s retreat this weekend where God really put that reality in my heart. And now I feel compelled to rewrite the mission and purpose of my blog. Ha! Because it’s all about striving to be perfect, like the Proverbs 31 woman is or appears to be. But somehow I lost the true meaning behind her daily mission which is more about her characteristics rather than the specific tasks she accomplishes. I’m a daily work in progress… Lol!

    Reply
    • Katie
      Katie says:

      Oh, Rosann, I so get it, this struggle! Love the way you put it: “the true meaning behind her daily mission which is more about her characteristics rather than the specific tasks she accomplishes”

      Reply
  4. Alia Joy
    Alia Joy says:

    That He would be the only one we strive to please. I wrote this in my letter to my daughter but it’s something I am trying to commit to Him. What a struggle. That my approval and acceptance would be based in His pleasure of me and not of others. There’s freedom in knowing my best will never be good enough and that’s ok, because His grace fills in the broken cracks and holes and makes my not enough, more than enough. Thanks for being so honest and sharing your heart. You bless me with this site.

    Reply
    • Katie
      Katie says:

      “There’s freedom in knowing my best will never be good enough and that’s ok, because His grace fills in the broken cracks and holes and makes my not enough, more than enough.”

      Love this!

      Reply
  5. Our Family for His Glory
    Our Family for His Glory says:

    Yes, yes! The battle for the approval of others is so strong… but how much greater is His approval. Each day, every moment, offering our best to Him (I love how you said it is not someone else’s best!).
    I appreciate you & your heart, & I am so excited to be going through Focused15!
    Jessica

    Reply
  6. Brooke Espinoza
    Brooke Espinoza says:

    Beautiful post, Katie! I can relate to want you said about if you spend too much time thinking about what you should be you can be paralyzed with what you’re not. I’m glad God has already approved us. 🙂 At times when my attention is on what I am not, I am just so amazed that Jesus still sees me perfect in Christ. I loved your decision and determination to do your best right where God’s called you. There is such peace in knowing you are doing exactly what God’s called you to do. There’s no higher calling than that! 🙂

    Reply
  7. Kristy
    Kristy says:

    Katie, you so speak to my heart! All the time. You always encourage me in my passion for God and His Word. Thank you!
    I just bought the Focused 15 study, it’s waiting for me on my IPad! I went to Amazon and clicked the “Look inside”, and read what you said about moving on from devotions…many of us need to hear that. Me included!
    I can’t wait to dig in!

    Reply
  8. Stacey
    Stacey says:

    “Every moment is an offering.” And I’m thinking, why would I want to offer Him someone else’s offering instead of my own?

    But, I do and I’m learning to fix my eyes on Him and keep my hands to the task only He has set before me.

    love you sweet Katie!

    Reply
    • Katie
      Katie says:

      “why would I want to offer Him someone else’s offering instead of my own?” we’ll, when you put it that way it seems pretty silly doesn’t it?!

      Love you, friend. Thanks.

      Reply
  9. Trish
    Trish says:

    I have this verse on a card, front and center on my refrigerator (amongst all of my family photos)! I was actually reciting it in my head when I was preparing my smoothie for breakfast this morning!! 🙂 A big shout out to Tracie Stier Johnson for linking me to your blog, books, etc. God’s timing is impeccable!!

    Reply

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