Take baby steps. Step out of your comfort zone. Have courage. You never know until you try.
I wonder if you have heard or said these exact phrases to yourself. When you say these words out loud have you wondered whether you actually believed the words you were telling yourself?
I believe in modeling what I strive for in my life. When I practice the art of going first, I pray my moving forward will bless someone else.
By going first, you set the stage for others to step out of their comfort zone. You model how, why, and when to pave the way for them to try on their own.Going first is an act of love, sacrifice, courage, and legacy. Stepping into a new beginning may even change the trajectory of your family story. The Art of Going First Click To Tweet
What Does Going First Look Like?
When I was growing up, I believed I had the ideal family. Mom and Dad shepherded my four brothers and me well. We knew love, comfort, safety, and forgiveness.
But outward emotions were lacking. Mom and Dad’s actions showed love, but I longed for the words.
Hearing the words, “I love you” meant that all of the other outward signs were true. I could carry the words in my heart and pull them out when needed.
When I became a mom at age 27, I knew that words mattered. Telling my newborn son that I loved him was going to be part of his everyday vocabulary.
Those three words pack a punch and remembering how much I wanted to hear them as a child spurred me on to change how I would raise my own kids.
What does going first look like for you? How have you replaced a family narrative in your story?
First Steps Make Take More Than One Try
In the art of going first, I find that some people are not receptive.
Maybe, it is the subject matter. Perhaps it’s because people aren’t willing to talk about certain topics. Or maybe they aren’t ready to hear about my journey.
If you have experienced pushback in your own life, it doesn’t mean you stop and never try again. So many factors collide when talking about topics such as mental health, grief, abuse, divorce, etc.
Delicate subject matters require a gentle approach. Trying to make a new way for your family by breaking generational ties is going against the tide. Even Jesus was not resistant to naysayers who questioned Him at every turn.
The Art of Going First According to Jesus
Jesus took many first steps in his short life of ministry. Every move was intentional and meant to show us the way after He was no longer with us.
Deuteronomy 31:8 tells us:
The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”
We can trust God to guide us. He is with us wherever we go. God’s presence is the beacon that shows us the way.
Jesus’s willingness to step into a culture of dissension and darkness is our key to new life. When the end of His life was but days away, Jesus continued to teach His disciples and those who followed Him.
In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus asks Peter, James, and John to keep watch with Him as He prays. He told them, “My soul is crushed with grief to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me” (Mark 14:34, NLT).
Jesus didn’t stop pointing His disciples to what was about to happen. He was trying to prepare them. Jesus was also trying to protect their human hearts from what was to come.
This is the art of going first. It may look like taking the unpopular next step. It may mean sacrificing what you know for what is best. Or, it may look like asking your friends to stand with you when things around you begin to crumble.
Here’s what I’m learning:
Your brave step is needed. Your sacrifice is noticed. The next generation is watching. Embracing the art of going first has the power to break generational ties and steer your people in a new direction.
Together we can change the narrative that feels comfortable but does not align with God’s story for us. Together we can hold hands and walk into a new chapter that will bless those following behind us as they make their own way.
In the art of going first, let’s remember to look to God for the way we should go.
And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus (Phil. 4:19, NIV).
Empowering and equipping women to live life well!
Here’s another post you may like to add to the conversation. Click HERE.
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