Striving is that constant pursuit of more. It’s more than goal setting. It’s an internal drive that propels you forward in spite of yourself. It’s a bit of a paradox. It has it’s positive side. It pulls you up when you fail. It reminds you that there is more. It helps you climb the mountain even when the terrain is rugged.

Striving also has a negative side. The pursuit of more can pull you off track. It can drive you in unnecessary directions. It can push you to look for more when more isn’t needed. It’s more than simply dreaming about a career change such as my desire to be a behavioralist like on Criminal Minds. Let me explain.

My striving looks like this, “Maybe I should pursue another degree? Maybe this certification will head me in the right direction? If I attain this level, then I will have what I need.” On the surface these don’t sound negative. What makes them negative is what is underneath it all, my motivation. You see under these pursuits is another voice in my head. This voice says, “Maybe another degree will get you recognized, maybe this certification will allow others to see who you are, maybe if I reach this level I will have value.

Yep, my striving centers around not feeling valued, not feeing worthy. I tell myself that another degree might allow me to do more, a certification might give me validation of what I know, My striving is so others will see me as valuable. These are lies that I have believed long enough.

11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosperyou and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:11-13 NIV).

God shows me that striving His way has purpose. His way reminds me that my value is intrinsic. He created me with value and I don’t have to seek it through others. When I stay close to Him and His purpose, my value is felt and known.

How does striving impact your life? Is it God’s way or is it filled with lies? How do you stay close to God’s purpose for you? Share your experience here and breathe life and bring hope to others.

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