Friday, 15 October 2010
Done. Done. Done.
I finished my book!
It’s hard to believe such a big project is actually done.
That’s what I want to talk about today. Not just finishing, but believing it’s done. Accepting the fact of the finish.
You’re in the middle of various projects, too. You know how hard it is to put a project down when you’ve been at it for a while. You keep picking it back up, correcting this, adding that, fiddling with it, because it’s still on your mind–especially the flaws. You may have finished, but you don’t feel finished.
Frankly, if the publisher hadn’t defined the finish line, I wouldn’t feel finished. But their process set my course–three long laps then across the line, breaking the tape. Write. Edit. Final Corrections. The day I pushed “send,” I hoped I was done. But it wasn’t until I heard back that I knew for sure.
Approved. That was the magic word that made me know my work was truly done. Now I’m actually not allowed to tinker with it. It’s out of my hands, sent on to the next stage of publication. No longer working on it, my job is to rest. What does rest look like? Satisfaction. Gratitude. And prayer that it will bear fruit.
There’s an analogy here, tugging at the edges of my mind. Jesus’s work of redeeming us is finished. This ultimate finished work sheds light on all our work, projects barely imagined and projects stalled and projects approaching completion.
Talk about a project! This was the project of the ages, planned by Father, Son, and Holy Spirit before the worlds were made. Before the glory of creation. Before the horror of the rebellion. Before any need for redemption existed.
The build up to the project was long and slow. God began to talk about it as soon as the need arose. With the skill of a publicist he pointed to it in prophecy. Hinted at it in symbols. Offered it openly in promises.
Finally, the time was ripe. Jesus’ three-phased work began:
- His Incarnation–Word became flesh. Done.
- His Good Life–Every temptation conquered. Every sin resisted. Every neighbor loved. Every will of the Father followed. Done.
- His Atoning Death–Every sin borne. Every sorrow carried. Every drop of righteous wrath swallowed. Done.
He crossed the finish line and waited. Then came God’s shout, Approved! His resurrection.
Believing It’s Done
What does it look like to believe that Jesus’ work is done? How does believing it affect my work on my various projects? Three thoughts:
First, I believe his work of redeeming us is done because he believes it. He is resting from that work right now. Satisfied. Grateful. And praying as he waits for fruit.
But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God, waiting from that time until his enemies should be made a footstool for his feet. Hebrews 10:12-13
Second, I believe his work is perfect, complete. My work doesn’t add to it, improve it, correct it, or tinker with it.
Third, I pursue my own projects fearlessly– with gusto–because my life doesn’t depend on them. My life depends on his work, not mine.
Do you have a project you’re struggling to finish? What’s holding you back? What’s helping you move forward? I’d love to hear about it.