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Seven-Day Practical Faith Blog: Let Your Doing Emerge from Your Being

If you've read my content, you can tell I favor action. I emphasize putting faith into practice. I urge people to leave comfort zones to take risks for God's kingdom.

What's not obvious is that I believe those external actions start from something that has changed internally. We must figure out who and whose we are, then let our action of doing emerge from our state of being.

This is a lesson I had to learn myself. In my book released last quarter, "From Comfort Zone to Trust Zone," I share the story of when I knew I hadn't truly gone all-in as a Christian. The Holy Spirit convicted me, showing me something I already knew but had buried away: that I hadn't fully given my heart to God. I was active in the church, working as hard as I could for God, but there was one thing I lacked, and that was giving over my heart to God, fully trusting and loving God regardless of consequence.

I went on a journey of discerning what it really meant to give my heart to God. Looking back, I can see that I improved at facing difficult situations with more insight, resolve, and empathy than I had before. I became a better person than I had been. As a result, I believe that God is working more powerfully through me as a vessel.

I had to change my "be-ing" before my "do-ing" could be more richly fulfilled.

A viral video shows a 2023 commencement speech by Kelsey O'Connor, a North Carolina State graduating senior (find it at O'Connor is a remarkable example of someone who suffered and as a result re-evaluated her identity and what it meant to her actions.

O'Connor was a college softball player when she suffered a traumatic brain injury that not only ended her career but set her back quite a bit; for example, she acquired a stutter that she overcame. As she considered how she could not identify as a softball player any longer, O'Connor chose to describe herself and others by three measures:

  • A person's attitude

  • How they treat others

  • How they are uniquely beautiful

For example, instead of describing her roommate as an engineer, O'Connor would describe her as a kind, intelligent, adventurous girl who loves her family deeply.

Undertake this exercise: how would you describe yourself by those three measures? How would you describe people who are close to you?

O'Connor also said in her brief but powerful speech, "Who we are internally is the root of what we do and what we produce for the world."

I couldn't agree more. This approach is a core part of my Legacy Tree video series, the first third of which focuses on how we define ourselves before going on to discuss how we provide to others.

So I urge you to consider who you are before you consider what you do. In my blogs and books and more, I'll continue discussing the actions to take in our everyday faith life. But I want to emphasize how our doing emerges from our being.

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