As I was paying bills, it happened again. Another online company wanted me to upgrade my account. Translation: pay more money for a few more services.
Ah, upgrading. The DIY shows focus on upgrading the home, particularly the kitchen. Fun to watch and imagine how I might do the same. Some day.
As a writing coach, I constantly research new ways to help my clients with their projects.
The latest publishing tools, best practices for a book launch, effective marketing solutions.
Help them upgrade and update their quarterly goals.
But what are some of the deeper ways we can upgrade and find more hope?
Be willing to change. An upgrade in remodeling requires change. So does the upgrade in life.
We learn, grow and stretch in ways that force us to embrace more hope.
Especially when life is hard.
Stretching those faith muscles and believing for better days helps us feel more empowered. Faith feeds and nourishes hope. But sometimes, we first need to change.
Changes are often uncomfortable. For example: Jorge Soler recently changed from being a Kansas City Royal to playing for the Atlanta Braves. A move for his family. A change in different policies within club houses. New faces to learn.
But now he wears a World Series ring and he became the MVP with that amazing three-run homer in the sixth game.
Changes can sometimes produce lovely results.
Be open to other opinions. When we stay within our comfort zone of being with the same people and doing the same activities, we can begin to rust. It’s easy to hang around friends and family that never challenge us.
No upgrading happens when we stay in the same mental and emotional space.
But when we force ourselves out of that comfort zone, we learn to truly listen to others’ opinions. We consider how honest debate can teach us.
Stretch us toward a more hope-filled upgrade. Hold fast to our beliefs yet consider how they might broaden and expand to include greater values.
Being quick to listen, but slow to speak — controlling our anger (James 2:19).
Become a student again. Life-long learning keeps our brains active. We read a book that encourages us to research more about a topic. Watch a documentary about another part of the world and learn to be grateful for what we have.
Cross reference a Bible verse. Check it in different versions. Google it in the original Hebrew or Greek.
Sometimes our faith needs to be upgraded into a broader interpretation. Sometimes we need to seriously examine some of the false teachings we were once taught. Then let them go.
Upgrades can be a good thing. They can make life easier and add beauty to our lives. With caution, of course.
The physical upgrades need financial boundaries. Waiting to upgrade the kitchen until the bank account has sufficient funds.
The emotional, mental and spiritual upgrades also need healthy boundaries. Time to reflect on possible changes. An inward search of our raw places and why they need a re-do.
Confession. Forgiveness. Repentance.
But an upgrade in our souls to a more compassionate and helpful place is always a good practice. And when it strengthens our hope, then all of us can live in a better place.
©2021 RJ Thesman – All Rights Reserved
The latest upgrade to my writing craft is a book of encouragement, practical tips and devotions for single moms. Check out Just for Today: Hope for Single Moms.