Where Does Growth Come From?

How on earth do you and I grow?  I know what you're thinking, I grow physically by pigging out on pizza, regular pop, and chocolate.  All foods I can no longer have due to a new food allergy/intolerance.  Let's not focus on such harsh realities as giving up CHEESE!  Instead, let's focus on our own growth spiritually and emotionally - where does that growth come from? 

You may have noticed I haven't been blogging as regularly.  Mostly because life has been crazy and I'm having trouble focusing on the message.  In the last month, I went to the doctor and was told to start the elimination diet to see what my system may be reacting to.  Turns out it's my two fave foods....gluten and cheese, I mean dairy, I mean CHEESE!!!!!!!  Phooey! 

In the midst of all this, I SOLD my house!  Can you believe it?  Just when I was starting to think that God had other plans for me and my housing journey, a young couple fell in love with my house.  Rock on!  

I'm not gonna lie.  Selling your house is kind of pain.  The inspection happened and it all went downhill from there.  There are some electrical issues.  And some hand railing safety issues.  Not to mention the radon.  Needless to say - there are some repairs to be made.  My time has been spent calling electricians and handymen and radon mitigators.  Who knew there was such a specialty?  

I'll let you in on a little blogging secret - most bloggers plan their posts in advance.  There are worksheets and printables for all of us bloggers to use.  But when it comes down to it - I'm more of a free spirit.  I tend to get my inspiration from God himself.  What is God doing in my own life?  How does it relate to walking in fearless faith and life coaching in general?  

All this to say - there has been way too much going on to process for one blog post.  

That is, until recently.  Recently our church announced a building expansion project with a hefty price tag.  Our church is proposing a financial campaign to get us started.  Pastor/boss man introduced the project with this short quote, "Growth only comes when we are outside of our comfort zone."

Huh?  Is that so? 

I don't know about you - but I would rather grow in other places.  You know the places that are comfortable and familiar.  The places that don't require new thoughts and attitudes.  The places that feel more like sweat/yoga pants and less like high heels.  Are you with me people?  

To be honest, pastor-boss man only touched on it.  He had other things to say.  But I wanted him to camp there a little longer.  What exactly was going to be out of my comfort zone?  And just how was God calling me to grow through our churches vision?  Where was God calling me to trust him when it seemed impossible and unfamiliar and more like high heels with my big honking bunion?  

I will confess to you right now that I would be perfectly content to hang out with gluten and cheese, where my house needs no additional work and would sell for top dollar, where I don't have to meet 3000 new people in one day (a NIGHTMARE for us introverts), and where income is overflowing instead of eking in like just in time planning in logistics. 

BUT.  That's a big but - we don't grow inside our comfort zone.  We aren't challenged and stretched when everything stays the same.  Our faith doesn't grow when we aren't forced to trust God for the impossible.  Our heart for God doesn't grow when we aren't forced to depend on Him for every provision.  

The question remains: where are we willing to be uncomfortable for God and our own growth? Is it the food we eat?  The friends we make?  The job we work?  The income level we achieve?  The place we live?  These are mine, but feel free to chime in on yours. 

You see, the bravest thing we can do is to willfully trust God and step out of our own comfort zone.  To step out of the boat when Jesus is calling.  To trust God with what seems impossible or at the very least, improbable.  To decide the crazy thing is the obedient thing because God is calling. 

And when I reflect on my own life, I realize my best times of growth do not come from times of status quo and comfort, but from times where I was forced to trust God.  Times when life was hard, but God was good.  Times when I didn't have to have it all figured out to move forward. 

Those are hard lessons and yet so rewarding when we grow in love and faith for God.  When we realize that when it comes down to it, we have a choice.  Do we love our yoga pants more than we love God?  

For me, I want to choose God every time.  I want to know that I want more of God and less of comfort.  I want to know that I'm willing to be uncomfortable to grow in my faith and experience more of God.  I want to know that the comfort of yoga pants are nothing to the safety and security of walking with God outside my comfort zone. 

One foot faith doesn't choose comfort over God.  One foot faith steps out of the boat onto the water one foot at a time and trusts.  Just trusts.  And knows that anything we give up by stepping out of our comfort zone will replaced with a love and experience of God that cannot compare to gluten and cheese. 

I'd love to pray for you as you step out of your own boat.  Where is God calling you out of your comfort zone?  Comment here or on my Facebook page! I'd love to journey with you!