What is Tank Life? This is when you have restricted your thinking to only what you can see, hear, smell, taste and feel. Sometimes, we may even describe it as being “practical,” or “realistic.” I don’t know about you, but that sounds extremely boring to me! Don’t stay stuck in your little tank: escape tank life!
So You Want to Leave the Tank?
Living with a conservationist animal rights extremist has its interesting moments. Like when we had to explain to our, then, nine-year-old that there are critters in America that can eat you, and that we weren’t in England anymore, where the most dangerous thing is a badger. Or when we found a black widow nest in our yard, which prompted a debate on the pros and cons of allowing them to live in a specially designed—by said nine-year-old—shoebox enclosure in our house.
No they can not come in the house.
Because bringing them inside the house would not help them fulfill God’s purpose for their creepy little lives. (And Mom would likely pulverize them upon entry.)
Children think differently than adults. They are still in that phase of life where they believe that all things are possible, that they really can achieve anything (including personal flight, so keep the windows closed), that their dreams can be a reality, that obstacles exist to be overcome, and that vision is not limited by lack or impracticalities. They are masters of thinking outside of the tank. That sense of wonder and imagination is what sets apart the exceptional from the average, millionaires from minions, inventors from wannabes, and victors from victims.
But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”
Escape Tank Life
What does life look like outside the tank? You wont know until you leap! Leaving the tank—that place of comfort and safety where everything is ticking along just fine—to chart a course into the unknown is potentially terrifying. The truth is, though, that many have gone before you and survived the walk of faith.
We have had our share of Christopher Columbus moments. England is a very small country compared to most, and traveling is arduous to us. If we have to drive more than an hour or two, then that requires an over-night stay, and any daily commute exceeding 45 minutes would necessitate moving house!
So, moving country was a huge step into the unknown for us. What enabled us to make that move was a baby step. We knew that God was calling us on this big adventure, but it took a while for our flesh to get brave enough to move in the right direction. Thankfully, God’s grace is sufficient for us! His plans are not so fragile that time, or wrong turns, can shipwreck them.
Beware of Small Tank Mentality
What if it doesn’t work out? What if it’s not really God? What if you aren’t ready? What if you are wrong about this?
All of these are great questions. Normal questions. Tank questions! If you have asked yourself these questions, it doesn’t mean you aren’t in faith. It simply means you are a human being who doesn’t have all of the answers, yet. But if you’re ready to expand into a bigger tank, ask yourself better questions:
Is God big enough to cover our mistakes? (Yes!) Can we trust Him to do what He said He would do? (We can!) Is He our source of happiness, provision, health, peace and protection? (He is!) Do we really believe that He is the God of the impossible? (Yes, Hallelujah!)
A small tank mentality will allow fear to make decisions for you rather than faith. But God has given you a spirit of power, love and a sound mind!
Leaving the Tank
As we move on, there are always those who get left behind because they cannot, or will not, make the journey with us. This is the probably the hardest part of pursuing our God-given destiny. Remember, when the children of God left Egypt, they were all given the opportunity to enter the promised land. Yet, not all of them could see past the giants, and it hindered them receiving all that God had for them. In the same way, we can allow obstacles to cause us to doubt. Unfortunately, this can keep us from entering into the promises of God.
Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.”
Don’t allow others around you to deter you from following what God has led you to do. They may simply disagree with your direction, or even call you crazy. Put limits on what you allow into your heart. If God has spoken, He has spoken. That’s it. I’m not saying to disregard wisdom from trusted, godly mentors. When you are in a solid relationship with God, you will know in your heart the difference between godly wisdom and attacks on His vision for your life.
Advice from a Previous Tank Dweller
- Life is full of unknowns—stick with the one thing that you can know: Jesus always leads us to triumph (2 Cor. 2:14).
- Be moved with compassion, rather motivated by fear.
- Know that God is bigger than any mistakes we have made, or will make in the future. In fact, He knows them ahead of time and picked us anyway!
- Believe Big: God doesn’t worry that you will overcommit Him to a promise of His that He can’t deliver.
Take the plunge today—believe God for something outrageous that only He can do!
It is vitally important to become mindful of the source of your thoughts: the world or the Word. So, it’s time for some Brain Training! Discover what the Bible teaches about the mind, and how to be transformed by renewing yours. Learn how to keep your life from conforming to the pattern of the world around you and to start seeing things from God’s perspective.