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Sunday, my pastor, Rev. Byron Thomas spoke about how we can have what is great rather than settling for the good. His text was taken from Nehemiah 7: 6-66. God promised the Jewish people that they could return to their homeland after 70 years of exile. Once allowed to return, only 2% returned. I wanted to know, why only 2%? The reason is simple and similar to what many of us do today—they had grown comfortable in their exiled land. Often we become so comfortable in our surroundings and  circumstances that we forget to grow or stretch to get to the next level.

I challenge you to push past the comfortable or what you consider good to get to the great! Think about the life of Nelson Mandela. He certainly could have opted for good by taking the deal to get out of prison in 1985 by compromising what he believed and fought for. I’m certain he wanted to be with his wife and children. However, he fought for the great and was later released in 1990 without compromising his beliefs.

Pursuing what is great typically involves being a little uncomfortable for a period of time. But isn’t that what growth and maturity is all about. The definition of growth is a gradual increase in size or significance (adapted from www.dictionary.com). Remember that growth is synonymous with change. Change does not take place until we are uncomfortable. Consider further, “he who is not busy growing, is busy dying.”

I believe moving into your greatness involves three things:

Pray boldly—Instead of praying that your rent/ mortgage is paid this month, pray for financial understanding and growth to meet your financial obligations.

Listen and obey—Once you pray, be willing to listen to what God says about your requests and his plan for your life. Then, obey what He tells you. Here, especially, is where you grow and the loss of comfort begins.

Live confidently—Even though you may not see the greatness, you still want to live obediently and confidently in what God promised you. You typically will not recognize the greatness that you are living, but others around you will in time. You are the choices you make.

 You get to decide. How will you choose to live—good or GREAT?