I have been reading in Galatians lately and on Labor Day this verse seemed to grab me. “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9 NIV).
I have been down in the dumps lately. My friends are all retiring and I am still stuck in the 9 to 5 mode. It has caused me to foeel like my ship has pulled up anchor and sailed off without me! I am struggling to respond to life when it has dealt me lemons and I cannot make them into lemonade. Was this the life I signed on for? Is this where I wanted to be when I was in high school? college? a young mother? I am struggling to know where to turn when the powers that be toss my hopes and dreams overboard and tell me to go on home? My friends are all celebrating their 40+ anniversaries....and I would be too......but things didn't happen like that......things changed.....everything. I know many of you may have met with brick walls....walls you could not scale....you know...where people have told you the following:
You are not smart enough.; You don’t have enough money; Your writing is not good enough says the millionth rejection letter I opened; You don’t have the right credentials; Your past is too sordid, 0r you really messed up a time or two in your life; Your idea is not practical...or they say...it's just plain stupid. I don't know about you.....but I have stood on the dock of my precisely prepared hopes and dreams and watched as all my friends got on the ship that I was dying board--without me. All I could do was put on a forced smile and wish them well, when what I wanted more than anything is to run on that ship and say, “You’ve made a mistake. This is my boat! It was meant for me too! Don’t leave me!” This has happened to me many times in my life and I have learned from these experiences that there are a few things I can do when it does. Many times I simply gave up and went home, or I ran from it. Once in awhile I would do whatever it took to get on board. It was not always easy...but it was worth the fight. I have learned to let go of discouragement and take hold of this God-given dream....you do know I am a pastor....right???? I have discovered in my life that God's dreams for me....are most often so much bigger than my own. I don’t know what your ship is today. I don’t know what God has planned for you . . . but I do know it is something good.
It is so hard to press on in the shadow of discouragement. I tell you it is hard work. Many times I have wanted to wimp out because giving up is so much easier. But it is those times when I find myself keeping on in the shadow of disappointment so that I can experience the sweetness of success. I have discovered I want to live BOLD. I want to climb over the walls I come face to face with. I want to find my dreams that I thought were lost, dust them off, move forward, and live bold. How about you???