When You’re Undone by Unfinished Business

For months on end I’ve been bound by the unfinished.

Projects, post, prayers, maintenance, medications, ministries and ideas… They pile high on my table, spill into list form in my planner and sound alarms on my phone for fear that I’ll forget to complete something.

When I do accomplish a task it feels so good to check it off as finished- whether it’s organizing the cabinets, rearranging furniture or just replying to an email.

But when I fail, it’s like I stall out under a cloud of defeat. Berating myself for my lack of ability to achieve and searching to soothe my soul with even the tiniest seed of a small success.

In this frenzy of needing to feel accomplished I signed up for an online class to teach me how to “Create + Complete” a project that matters – hoping to reignite the art of writing that has lain dormant this winter. And though the content has been nothing short of life giving and inspiring, I’m still stuck on the next to last module and the finale looks awful fuzzy from where I stand.

Some days, if I let them, the frayed edges of unfinished business aggravate me even though the psalmist said:

You [Lord] hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me. ~Psalm 139:5

As much as we bristle at the thought, some days we have to purposely choose unfinished before we come unglued.

Paul pressed on through the undone though he had a very real reason- prison- for not being able to complete all the work he felt called to do. He saw how Christ blessed him with a different mission field despite his chains.

Can you work from your wholeness rather than your dysfunction? ~ Emily P. Freeman

We will never be finished or perfect until Christ comes again. And once we stop wandering in the weeds that obscure our path with “you should” or “you could” we’ll be free to walk unhindered- even just the slightest step forward.

Our idea of finished is fractured.

The real goal is forward, not finished.

Finished isn’t ours to figure.

Regarding this holy work of image bearing, it was Jesus who said, “He who has began a good work in us will complete it.” {Philippians 1:6}

Perhaps it’s not an issue of finishing at all but rather one of patience – God is saying hold on, wait for it, but we just want to check it off and be done.

We are God’s work in progress, layer upon layer and step by step he is creating in us His masterpiece.

It cannot be rushed.

We are never finished until He says so and Revelation reveals He has the final say. Until then, we’re to just keep on growing, lesson to lesson. Strength to strength. Glory to glory.

There’s no end to growing- there’s always more to learn, do and become. There is no finish line or level to complete in Christ’s service. The sun is never finished rising or setting. It carries on day to day- whether it was spectacular or not.

And we know He will make us complete even when we’re forever tripped up by our loose ends.

Whatever unfinished business is binding you, just do the next right thing in love.

Write the letter.

Kiss your people.

Pray the prayer.

Finally frame that simple page from a Beth Moore event…

Just follow the faithful Savior to the finish.

When your patience is finally in full bloom, then you will be ready for anything, strong in character, full and complete. ~ James 1:4

Tell me what unfinished business you’re up against? I’d love to pray for you! And if you haven’t gotten your set of scripture cards, won’t you go and put your email in here?

Sometimes I link up with these lovely blogs

22 thoughts on “When You’re Undone by Unfinished Business

  1. You know, I’m finding that the time we estimate something to take shape, get rolling or gather momentum is absolutely irrelevant to God’s timing in our lives. Who are we, after all, to think that we should know {from our very puny positions} or even try to dictate a timeline for events, purposes and even the simplest days of our lives? Only God can bring something to pass and I am completely in awe of his timing when I set my expectations aside and just bask in the wonder of his work. I feel like a tiny ant {and that’s probably what I look like from God’s perspective, reigning over the heavens!} toiling away trying to make things work MY way.

    YOU, Heather, have discovered the secret that he will make us complete in himself, and oh — it will be so much better than any of our ideas, plans or work! Cheering you on in just doing the next thing right in front of us! ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think I can sum it up with, “If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans…” 😉 It does help to look back and see all the places where His timing was perfect– I experienced that just last night as I went to a Casting Crowns/Danny Gokey/Unspoken concert with gals from church and each one of them had something to say that lined up with things I had written yesterday… Chills! Thanks for the encouragement as always my friend ♥♥♥


  2. I used to feel so bad or as you said “failed” until I realized things happen that change my plans and my to-do lists and that’s helping others, taking care of grandchildren or just having lunch with a friend.

    Yes, He will make us complete.

    Beautiful pictures.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes if we can reframe it to see God’s hand in it, what a difference— for instance our taxes –which I totally dragged my feet on this year only to be blessed to find out the husband was getting a revised W2 because the original was wrong! Procrastination for the win this time…!


  3. This has SO many good lines and I’m too tired to be reading. You did the right thing. You took the course. (I’m curious what that last step was.. and finale) or was it a Final?? Yes, do the next thing and you did and you framed great, pure thoughts for the rest of us. love, sue

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ♥ Hoping to have some fruits of the finished project that stemmed out of that course to share you lovelies soon! It’s one step at a time, no matter how slow, right? Hope you got some sleep young lady! xx


  4. Okay, I know your list is long (i just read your post) but I sometimes miss reading bc of how it comes in my inbox – it says: WordPress.com (New Post) When You’re Undone…

    can you instead put your title and your beautiful banner ? by title I mean: Recollected Design – bc it’s a lovely title and so is your banner. So instead it could come in my inbox: Recollected Design “When You’re Undone by the Unfinished”

    I’m in your corner. I wouldn’t know how to do it either! Let’’s pray for a tech person for you to show you.

    My last newsletter last Sat wasn’t much better, so my person created a template for me to write something more splashy and it will arrive SAt. Are you a subscriber? If so, you’ll see (hopefully!) – that is if I did it right – something more personal.

    Your writing is worth reading. So there. night. s. >

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Gonna have to pray for that tech person to consult…!!! Google wasn’t cutting it– thinking I may need to upgrade to self-hosted to achieve…. yikes. Father be merciful…
      And I need to go see if I’m subscribed or not– don’t want to miss any of your wisdom! ♥


  5. Oh. My. Word. You and I may just be kindred spirits! So much of this spoke to me. As I was walking out the door this morning to get my boys on the bus I noticed a knitting project I started many (MANY) moons ago. Unfinished. And I started feeling bad about it. But I love how you said our goal is forward, not finished! And that the sun keeps on rising and setting regardless of whether or not it is spectacular. WOW! Thanks for these words… I’m going to keep reading! Blessings!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Girl!! Yes!! I think we are— just yesterday I was swooning over your jewelry and your posts on dreams are singing my song… I think we may be doing Sue’s series together as well! We should definitely “hang out” more at least virtually 🙂 Happy and humbled to have you here Liz. ♥ Thanks for leaving your sweet comment!


  6. I agree we are never done growing and learning. We keep moving forward with what He puts in our hearts to do and become a good steward (which is also a learning process). Praying for you, friend!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes! The more I ponder it I think it’s God’s plan for us to be lifelong learners ♥ Thanks for popping over and leaving your thoughts Kelly! xo


  7. I love this healthy perspective. As a compulsive list-checker-offer, I often beat myself up for not making it to the bottom of the list. This is really helpful. Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I too am bound by the unfinished. I need to get comfortable with that feeling. Even as i study the Bible I get this overwhelming feeling of not knowing enough. I know it is a process and we will always be learning. I just need to get comfortable with that.

    Thank you for your fantastic post!


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey there Maree! I totally get the overwhelm– the struggle is real in almost every area of our lives– to do more, be more, have more. We are certainly a big ol’ work in progress and that takes time– nothing but grace for you here 🙂 C’mon back anytime.


  9. Heather, thanks for this encouragement for those of us who’ve been in seasons where there’s just far too many loose ends. There is hope. I love the whole idea of just doing the next right thing.

    Yes, that we can do.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Oh, yeah. How many drafts have I piled up and unchecked tasks on my to-do list.
    We’ll get there. And God does not require us to be perfect to serve Him.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. This post Heather – so good – you hit the nail on the head. Yes there is Gods method in what we see as our madness. His plans not at all to do with our lists of what we must do or accomplish. The goal not the finish line but the journeying with Him. Love your words . Beautifully timed as always. God bless xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello dear Tracey! Sometimes it takes a special point of view to see His message in our mess but it’s there alright. 🙂 I heard an interview with Laura Story today where she said it’s not so much what am I trying to accomplish as it is What is God trying to accomplish IN me? Amen! Happy Easter my friend! ♥ Thanks as always for your sweet comments!

      Liked by 1 person

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