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Becoming Adaptable to God’s To-Do List

Written by Lora Baughey on

I like to keep my options open, to live in the moment and remain adaptable. You might say I “fly by the seat of my pants.” You wouldn’t be wrong; but somehow this works for me. It’s where I thrive, actually. Adaptability is one of my top five strengths.

So, what is adaptability?

According, to Merriam-Webster, adaptability is “the quality of being able to adjust to new conditions; the capacity to be modified for a new use or purpose”

I’ve built luxury dream homes, been a charismatic public speaker, sung my heart out in sold out arenas, run my own restaurant, beauty salon, and not-for-profit relief ministry. I have been a world-traveling live-off-the-land nomad. I’ve swam with whales, climbed Everest, and hang-glided over the Swiss Alps. I am a world-class daydreamer, through and through. But, when it comes to actually doing the hard work to start and stick with something, I’m utterly paralyzed by an overwhelming fear of failure. Even as I help my four kids find their way, I often say that I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up.

At this point in my life, though, an empty nest warns me of its pending arrival. Soon, it will be just me and my husband (who travels for work) and the dogs. And, I should mention that I’ve been forbidden from adopting any more pets. Long story. So, the time is now for me to settle into what’s next. Why am I here on this earth? What is it, exactly, that God wants me to accomplish?

I was reading in John a few weeks ago when Jesus’s words jumped out at me, capturing my full attention. I’m sure I’ve read them many times before, but on this occasion, I heard them for the first time:

“I glorified you on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do” (John 17:4).

How to Pursue My Clear Calling

Jesus had a clear calling. He knew his full purpose and he accomplished it—all of it. He started his mission, he completed every last task, and then told the Father he was done (John 19:28). Wow. My “to do” list is never complete. As soon as I cross a task off, two or three more things needing my attention crop up. I honestly can’t imagine being completely done with everything at once. But, in just thirty-three short years, Jesus crossed every single thing off his list.

With a touch of ADD, and endless options vying for my attention, I, too, have a purpose. A single mission I’m called to remain adaptable to. God has a specific plan for my life— a “to do” list for me to complete. My tasks may be wide and varied, my earthly titles and positions may vary greatly, but my Father created me for one purpose—to glorify him with each day that I’ve been given. Currently, that looks like starting my own staging and interior design business. But every day, that means loving and serving those he puts in my path and looking for every opportunity to redeem the time by sharing the gospel as I’ve learned it through the Spirit’s comfort and encouragement in my own life experiences.

So, what’s on your “to do” list from the Father? What has stalled your progress or is stalling your progress? Together, let’s purpose to be like Jesus, accomplishing (all) the work that God has given us to do.




Lora Baughey

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