The Myth - and the Truth - About Doing it All
A few weeks ago, my husband and I saw the new movie, Limitless*. In it, Bradley Cooper plays Eddie, a scruffy writer with a looming book deadline, zero words written, and a serious case of writer's block. I could relate. At the time, I was staring down a deadline of my own, and even though I wasn't blocked, I really shouldn't have taken time out to see a movie. But it's so rare to find one that both my husband and I want to see... so there I was, trying not to feel guilty for enjoying myself.
Back to the movie... Through a chance meeting with an old friend, Eddie ends up with access to a drug that heightens his mental acuity. He is, as the saying goes, firing on all cylinders. The plot is full of twists and turns, so it won't give away anything to share this snippet of voiced-over narration: "I finished the book in three days." Oh, and his apartment was spotless and he has a complete makeover: from scruffy to studly in the blink of an eye.
I leaned over and whispered to my hubby, "I want some of that."
Sometimes, we want to do it all. Even worse, sometimes we truly believe we can do it all. So we try. And we try. We put everything we have into accomplishing all we set out to. And often, we fail. Maybe not at everything, but the fact that we failed at anything grates, so we beat ourselves up, then set new, just as improbable goals for domination of our personal world.
Can I get an Amen?
The plain fact is, we can't do it all. Not without help. In the movie, Eddie had a revolutionary new drug. In real life, we have something even better. Something with no side effects and no cost to us other than faith. We have this assurance from God:
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
Philippians 4:13 (NKJV)
Of course, there's a caveat to that. Christ strengthens us, so he's not going to aid us in doing something that will weaken us. Have you ever wanted something with all your heart, but it wasn't happening? Have you pushed and pushed until finally, you made it happen, only to find out it wasn't at all how you thought it would be? Sometimes, those missed opportunities or failed attempts are God's way of protecting us.
I'm going through a situation right now that's got me twisted in knots. I wish there was some way I could fix it. I wish there was a pill I could take to make it all go away. But there's not. All I can do is hold on to the knowledge that, while I'm stressing over this snippet in time, God sees the entire picture. Not only will he get me through it, he'll make me stronger. All the time.
*Limitless is rated PG-13 for thematic material involving a drug, violence including disturbing images, sexuality and language.
JENNIFER ALLEE believes the most important thing a woman can do is find her identity in God – a theme that carries throughout her novels. A professional writer for over twenty years, she's done extensive freelance work for Concordia Publishing House, including skits, Bible activity pages, and over 100 contributions to their popular My Devotions series. Her first novel, The Love of His Brother, was released by Five Star Publishers in November 2007. Her latest novel, The Pastor’s Wife, was released by Abingdon Press in February 2010. Her upcoming novel, The Mother Road, will be released by Abingdon Press in April 2012. She's a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, Romance Writers of America, Christian Authors Network, and the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance.
http://jenniferalleesite.blogspot.com/ - Jennifer's website
http://thepastorswifespeaks.blogspot.com/ - A safe haven for women living on the front lines of ministry.