Shifting your focus from changing THE world to changing YOUR world isn’t easy when you’re surrounded by a culture telling you to be radical, dream big, and live a grand epic story. But I think there are a couple of mental habits we can practice that will change our behavior in the long run.
Don’t Focus on the Results
In a world of instant gratification on so many fronts, we want to see the results of our efforts immediately. If the results aren’t there we can quickly because frustrated or demotivated because we start thinking our efforts are pointless, our work is meaningless. What we fail to remember is that oftentimes the process of the work is why God has called us to it. He has lessons to teach us and lives to impact through our obedience in the journey. Scripture also reminds us again and again that we plant the seeds, we water the seeds, but God makes them grow – the results are His business, not ours.
Learn to See God in the Mundane
Parenthood can feel very mundane. Very few stay-at-home mom’s wait with anticipation for the next diaper change or mess to clean up. Working in a factory can feel very mundane. Repeating one small step of an assembly process can feel insignificant. Cooking at a fast food restaurant can feel very mundane. Wrapping burgers for 8 hours a day doesn’t seem world changing. But, if we learn to see God in the mundane areas of our lives we will come to see that He is always at work. We will see that He is using our obedience in the mundane routine of life to impact the lives of those around us – He’s using the mundane to change OUR world.
Remember: It’s a Marathon, Not a Sprint
When you’re watching the olympics, the sprinters look impressive. We are amazed at how quickly then can travel the 100 yards from start to finish. But, while their speed is impressive, they don’t cover much ground. Marathon runners are less impressive to watch as they run more slowly repeating a mundane motion of putting one foot in front of the other. But they cover a lot of ground in the end. Long obedience in the same direction covers a lot of ground and makes a significant impact even if we don’t get to see them in our lifetime.