You know that treading water feeling? That feeling of being stuck, in spite of being perfectly able to swim, knowing what you need to do, but with that hesitancy of moving forward. What is that? You're surrounded by knowledgeable people who are great at what they do, receive their instruction, follow their teaching, their advice, but go to implement it and your gut says, "nah." It just doesn't feel genuine to you. Not that they are not genuine, but their process doesn't ring true for you.
There's a shift, call it a change in beliefs and alignment, that happens in our spirit as we move up in rank; rank in your church, rank at your job, rank in your business, even the rank within your own self as you begin to actively pursue your own purpose and calling. You look around and think, "Something is off here." Sometimes it's a tingle, sometimes its a solid NOPE. In reality, the relationship between your subconscious and your conscious is getting more solid. You can't successfully reach for something that requires two hands when one is tied by beliefs. This process is a natural one facilitated by the Holy Spirit, a bringing of limiters to your attention so that they can be dealt with. An awakened Christian is a force to be reckoned with- but we have to get off the milk.
My observations in both religion and business are stunningly similar. From birth, we have milestones to graduate from one phase to the next, from one label to the next. Don't we all start with fetus, ascend to infancy, progress to toddlerhood, advance to children, stagger up to adolescence? Always falling under a category: elementary, junior high, high school, higher education, employee, management...how lovingly we cling to those labels to justify our place in life, our pay grade...our worthiness. And yet, in all of those "works," we believe that grace is ours simply by believing. Or do we truly believe that? Surely we have to do to prove that we are worthy of it?
We seek out leaders to learn from, to emulate, to follow- to duplicate. Is there not a method in religion as there is in physical growth and business? Come, let's pack our bags of individuality- they are not good enough. Only pull a little bit of you out if it fits the model. Shove the rest in the closet because that guy knows what he's doing. This chick is rocking it. It works for a while, statistically it has to. Something always leads to something, and so it seems as if we are on the right track. We rise. We move in bigger "more important" circles. Oh, now we have to do this and be that for this expectation. We have to earn our place at the table, right? That subconscious desire - the programming - to seek something other than Him is so that if we fail, we have someone else to blame it on. Think about that. Where does seeking the Holy Spirit come in and following God's plan for you? Do you not trust what is His is good enough for success?
As we learn more and grow more and seek more, that core truth, the original program, knows what you were truly made for. Anything not in alignment with that cannot succeed. There comes a certain point in your advancement where your internal clock screams, "IT'S TIME!" It's time to pick your purpose (which we see by now, it's more like realizing it). Is your purpose glorifying a method? Is it glorifying a product? Or are your actions glorifying a leader? Ouch. At some point, you have to make a choice. At some point you have to decide if you are going to be true to God in you or are you going to be true to a distraction? I'm going to tell you, anything that makes you feel "less than" is a distraction. Humility is a fruit of the spirit; humiliation is a fruit of the enemy.
Everyone has heard that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting the same results. You know why we cling to insanity? Because it comes with instructions. The difference between working smart and slaving for method is the heart behind it. Do you see the faces? Do you seek to help? Do you focus on the goal more than the service? "Just do this, this, and this, and you'll *insert goal here* in no time!" Are you more in alignment with rank or financial goals or with God's? You will slam back into that truth wall again- remember, we're off of the milk now. That elevated place is for exactly such a time as this. A time when you get to use that glorious free will to be the hands and feet of Jesus. Jesus's hands and feet didn't pitter patter to fraternize with demons, His hands and feet ministered to people and set them free. It boils down to, "Who are we to offer freedom that we are not partaking of?"
I'm going to tell you a secret: It doesn't change your spiritual rank, your reputation or who you are to gracefully step out of a leadership umbrella and into the Holy Spirit nor is it as uncommon as you think. It would be scary if it was a rarity! Those negative voices aren't even you! They're spirits assigned to keep you from even reaching.
Pride tells you that you should be able to do what they are doing and succeed.
Mockery tells you that you that you are not working hard enough.
Religion tells you there are steps for a reason.
Lack tells you that your truth isn't good enough.
Insecurity tells you that you may as well not dream.
They are all filthy liars that you need to give permission to go play in traffic. You know why? They are purpose stealing thieves who pull you back as soon as you reach for your calling. They're the quicksand telling you that your big steps of faith are not getting anywhere. This misguided loyalty to masquerading spirits of "want" has got to stop if we are truly going to receive as we believe.
You are still valued.
You are still a leader.
You are still seen.
You are still important.
You are still heard.
You are still loved.
You have always been all of those things- your identity in Christ has never been determined by your method, who you sit under, or your company. It has always been in who you follow: Jesus. The only thing we have to lose with holy alignment is want, lack, poverty of spirit, and abandonment. Go ahead and take that revelation of who holds the ultimate authority. You know what you have when you lose the former? The best parts of you:
Your full presence.
Oh, and one more thing that maybe you didn't have before: peace.
"Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love."
Ephesians 4:14-16 NLT