Preparation: The thing you need to do to get to your end result. Most people’s reaction to preparation: booooo [insert emoticon here].
Kristine, Bethany, and the Simply Beautiful team have been working diligently to begin to prepare the very best Simply Beautiful Conference of 2014. But to do that- we have to do some hard work and preparation. Work is often the thing you hate doing but you just gotta do it. For instance, in order to be prepared for school to start, you need to do get your school supplies, get a cute outfit (which, let’s be honest- you picked out on Pinterest the day after school ended), and [deep breath] do your summer reading. In order to plan the perfect party you need to invite the guests, do the food shopping, prep the goodies… you’ve got the idea. If we were being honest with ourselves, most of us would prefer to sleep through the work process and reap the rewards of the end result. We usually act like we are allergic to preparation. I spent a great deal of time in college avoiding my schoolwork like the plague (though I am not proud of it today). I got my assignments done, but the quality was lacking, and I doubt I learned much from the way I worked. It was when I spent the time researching, drafting, editing, and proofreading that I was able to actually learn the information. The difference was my effort and attitude through the preparation and process.
In Galatians 6:9 Paul says:
And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.
Ladies, let’s face it- we get what we give. If we don’t shower for five days, we’re gunna start to stink. If we do our best in school, our grades will reflect our hard work. This is the principle of sowing and reaping- an old school idea that came from agriculture. A farmer will plant a seed and will (hopefully) be able to reap the crop from that seed. But this requires effort- it never just happens magically, like we would want it to. The farmer must be diligent to plant what he eventually wants to receive. We, as daughters of the King, have the opportunity to dream big, have vision, and put forth effort (or preparation) in order to make our dreams become reality. In one of my favorite movies, The Great Debaters, James Farmer Jr. says: “we do what we have to do, so we can do what we want to do”.You see, we humans see work and think it’s awful. It’s hard, timing consuming, and, let’s face it- sometimes boring. But God uses everything. He sees preparation as a way to grow you, shape you, and mold you. He is working while you are. What a beautiful truth. If we do the work now, we can set the stage for change. When we do the things we have to do, God begins to change our hearts. And, friends, as we do the necessary, it opens doors for God to do what only God can.
Let’s bring it on home: Ladies- what do you want to reap at the end of this summer? What are your goals, dreams, hopes, and wishes? If you want to grow in the Lord, you must read Scripture and learn His heart. If you want others to see that you reflect Jesus, you must spend time with Him. If you desire for your friends to come to know the Lord, you need to be having conversations (planting seeds) now. My hope for you is that you don’t waste away your summer. Take the chance to read, journal, serve, and work hard. Don’t let the summer pass without being able to be proud of how you have spend your time. As we are dreaming, wishing, preparing, and planning, for this coming October, know we are doing the preparation needed to be able to honor God and provide a space where you can encounter the great and mighty I AM.
Mandie, and the Simply Beautiful Team