Be All You Can Be—Part 2
From the Roadmap series
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Besides having faith in God’s plan for each of us, we need to rid ourselves of mindsets that limit us and keep us from becoming all God wants us to be.
Born to win
Limiting mindsets and defeatist attitudes can hold us back from reaching our full potential. Some of these mindsets are:
“I’ve tried it in the past, but it didn’t work.”
“It’s never been done before.”
“There are others who are more qualified and who can do a better job.”
“What if I make a mistake? What if I fail?”
“It’s too much work.”
As long as we think like this, we won’t be able to overcome obstacles to fulfill our calling.
Norman Vincent Peale relates this story in his book, Power of the Plus Factor:
Once, walking through the twisted streets of Hong Kong, I came upon a tattoo studio. In the window were displayed samples of the tattoos available. You could have a tattoo of an anchor or flag or mermaid or whatever. But what struck me with force were three words that could be tattooed on one’s flesh: Born to lose.
I entered the shop in astonishment and, pointing to those words, asked the Chinese tattoo artist, “Does anybody really have that terrible phrase, Born to lose, tattooed on his body?”
He replied, “Yes, sometimes.”
“But,” I said, “I just can’t believe that anyone in his right mind would do that.”
“The Chinese man simply tapped his forehead and in broken English said, “Before tattoo on body, tattoo on mind.”
Once our minds are “tattooed” with negative thinking, our chances for long-term success diminish. We cannot continue to function in a manner that we do not truly believe about ourselves. Often I see people sabotage themselves because of wrong thinking.
We need to ask ourselves, “What limiting mindsets do I have about myself? Have I put myself in a box?” When you think or say, “I could never do that,” are you limiting the Lord? What if the Lord wants to stretch you and make you grow in that area? You could be stunting your own growth through mindsets that limit you and hold you back from going further than you have gone before.
“As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.”1 How you see yourself, what you expect of yourself, your own self-image and self-talk have great power.
“With God, all things are possible.”2 We need faith, and then we have to fight for what we believe the Lord wants us to accomplish.
George Bernard Shaw said:“People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are. I do not believe in circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and if they cannot find them, they make them.”
If we want to progress, we need a personal plan for growth. Here’s a word from the Lord on this point:
To get anywhere you need a map, a plan, and a vision or a goal of the kind of person you know I want you to become, and then work toward gaining the virtues and removing the vices that will help you to get there. Seek Me about what I want you to do with your life. Think of someone you admire, or a career in service to others that you would like to have. Ask Me what it takes to be that kind of person, to excel in that career, to abide in that calling, and I’ll lead you. Then you’ll have something to strive toward.
Being all you can be means becoming what I know you can be. You have special talents, and beyond that, a special purpose for being on this earth. But to find it, you don’t sit and wait for Me or others to put you in front of the door and say, “Here, walk in,” but rather you do all you can to develop your potential and prepare for the plan and purpose I have for you.
I challenge you to grow. I challenge you to make the difficult choices of forsaking certain things, and adding other things to your life, even if it’s difficult.—Jesus, speaking in prophecy
Here’s more on developing a plan for personal growth. This is from the book Developing the Leaders Around You. Author John Maxwell says:
People think personal growth is a natural result of being alive. Well, it’s not. Growth is not automatic; it does not necessarily come with experience, nor simply as a result of gathering information. Personal growth must be deliberate, planned, and consistent… I want to emphasize that personal growth requires a plan. You have to create a plan and follow it.
Practical steps for personal growth
Set aside time daily for growth. There are two important concepts in this step. First, time for growth must be planned. Getting sidetracked is one of the easiest things in the world to do. Growth time that is not strategically planned into the day soon disappears because our lives are busy. People must find a time that works for them and schedule it into their calendar. Then they must guard that time as they would any other appointment. Second, the time set aside must be set aside daily—for no fewer than five days a week. Educators report that people learn more effectively in shorter regular sessions than long, infrequent blocks of time.
Besides having a daily plan, I also recommend going through materials during times that other people normally consider wasted time. For instance, whenever I travel I take along books that may not be as meaty as my daily reading but that have good material.
Apply quickly what you learn
Simply knowing a thing will not make it part of you. To do that, you must apply it. Each time you learn something new, it’s good to ask yourself, “Where, when, and how can I use this?”
Grow with someone
I have a number of people around me who share things with me and whom I deliberately share things with. When you share what you are learning with others, it increases your insight, builds your relationship with them, gives you a common vision, and holds you accountable. It also creates worthwhile conversation.
It is helpful to think about how you can change things in your life to bring greater fulfillment, fruitfulness in your work and service to the Lord, and progress for God’s glory!
Roadmap was a video series created by TFI for young adults. Originally published in 2010. Adapted and republished on Anchor January 2020. Read by Simon Peterson.
- Living in God’s Word
- God’s Healing Balm in Times of Grief
- Hurry and Worry
- One Thing Before All Things
- Faith Like Gold
- Learning About God’s Mercy
- Trusting Through the Silence
- A Life Well Lived, Today and for the Future
- How God Gave Me a Home
- Setting Our Affections on Things Above