Thriving vs. Striving
"What do people get for all the toil and anxious striving with which they labor under the sun?" -Ecclesiastes 2:22
I remember being in grade school trying to beat all 6 of my classmates (small school is an understatement) by getting through my coursework quicker. We were working through our phonics books, and it was down to me and the last guy. Once he saw he was going to lose by a long stretch, he gave up. I kept on going to finish, but at that point it really didn't matter anymore. What was working through a phonics book as quickly as possible going to get me anyway? I really wasn't learning that much more by going through it at a ridiculous pace. In fact, I was absorbing less!
So much of striving in life relates to a life of faith. When we're striving, we're busy - and B.U.S.Y. equates to "Being Under Satan's Yoke." Do we fear not having enough provision? God is our Provider. Do we fear other's thoughts of us? God should be the one we care about pleasing most. Do we fear we won't measure up? God has given us our own identity -- unique to anyone else. Do we fear success or failure? "Love never fails." (1 Corinthians 13:8) "Then you will have success if you are careful to observe the decrees and laws that the LORD gave Moses for Israel." -1 Chronicles 22:13
Another case in point: In singing, if you try too hard and strain your voice, you can do irreparable damage to your vocal chords. But, if you learn to use the natural range of your voice and free it from the rest of the muscles in your throat, you can have a lot of success in singing. Most of singing is freeing your vocal chords from the tension of the muscles surrounding them, while training your vocal chords to land on the right note.
Are you striving in any area of your life? Ask God to help in you in that area and give it to Him.