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Stick With It

In our instant/have it now society it is sometimes difficult for me to work at something long enough to make it happen.

We have become so spoiled by microwave ovens and on-demand television and movie stations that waiting for something we want has become something we ‘re not used to.


We’ve heard it said the most rewarding things in life take work and I believe that’s true. They take practice and persistence. Becoming good at something requires us to keep at it even when we don’t feel like we are making progress and especially sticking with it when it’s not easy.

I don’t know about you but I struggle a lot with chasing after dreams I have because they take too long to come true. Do you share my struggle?

I was thinking today about a couple of dreams/goals I have for my life. They seem so far away and actually quite unreachable. When I’m honest with myself though I realize that in my quest to get to the goal line I can’t seem to be content with the mile-markers along the way I forget that each mile-marker gets me one step closer to the finish line.

Sometimes I find myself becoming so frustrated and discontented that I actually turn around and go back toward the starting line. It seems silly to put that into words for anyone to read, but that’s the reality I face.

This morning I was getting down on myself in this department, feeling like I can’t see anything through to the end or wait for the fruition of what I’m working on when in the midst of my pity party I started looking through the seed catalog.

I love to garden and know if I plant seeds properly, water and weed them and keep the woodchucks and other varmints away I will be rewarded by luscious fruits, vegetables and beautiful flowers. I will patiently wait all spring and summer, tending the gardens to reap the reward at the end.


Suddenly I was encouraged and admonished at the same time!!

Why does it work with gardening when it doesn’t seem that way with other things in my life? Because I have experience in gardening! I know from my past how things will turn out in the end. That’s not to say it has always been easy. I have ruined plants with too much water, watched them shrivel up and die from a lack of water, and stunted their growth by allowing weeds to choke them out. But I learned from each error in order to become more successful the next time.

I know that I have to stick with it.

Sometimes we don’t know what a goal is going to look like exactly. It can be hard to chase a dream because we don’t have a clear or complete picture of what it will look like when it comes to fruition. And oh it can be hard for me to chase after something when I don’t know what I’m going to end up with in the end!

I’m encouraged when I think of Moses and Joshua. Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt to a land God promised was filled with milk and honey. Moses had never seen that land but he believed what God said was good and true. He continued leading a tribe of ungrateful, complaining people around in the desert for 40 years, trusting that what was ahead of them was good.

When Moses died, Joshua took over. They were at the edge of the Promised Land but still were not sure of what was ahead of them. He must have been filled with all kinds of emotions from excitement to fear as he met with the Lord. These are the words God had for Joshua:

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.  Joshua 1:9

We may not feel like we are on the way to take over a new land but when we are chasing a dream that God has put in our hearts that is exactly what we’re doing. And I believe He gives us the same promise as Joshua to be with us wherever we go.

As we begin a new week, join me in sticking with it….whatever your it may be. Even if we can’t see the finish line, move toward the next mile-marker and not away from it for our own promise is waiting to be fulfilled.

blessings and peace to you today!

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Sorry Dad…

My dad’s been living in Heaven for 5 years now, but I sometimes find myself apologizing to him. There were things he taught me to do that he was very specific about and when I find myself not doing them “his” way I often blurt out an apology to him.

For example, Dad had a thing for mowing lawn. There was a specific way it had to be done, always blow the grass toward the grass you’ve already mowed, go past the end before turning down the other side in order to keep the lines straight, and never, never drive horizontally through a vertical line you’ve just mowed. He was VERY picky and it didn’t matter how many years of experience I had, if I didn’t do it his way (the “right” way) he was out there telling me how to correct what I had done wrong. The other day I was backing up on a section of lawn I’d just mowed and went really, really crooked & wavy. As I looked at where I had been I found myself saying, “sorry Dad” and then chuckled to myself. I’ve come to appreciate how Dad felt about mowing lawn, but even more than that how he never gave up on believing that eventually I’d get it right.

I have been very blessed to have two parents who always believed in me and never let my failures and mistakes keep them from loving me. I’m not saying they never got angry with me. Sometimes it was scary to admit my wrongs to them and wonder what the repercussions would be, but their anger or disappointment never made me question whether or not they loved me. Through the childish fights with my sister in our emotional teenage years and through countless times of messing up (even putting a Bobcat bucket through the wall of the barn) they always forgave me and helped me move on to make a situation right or find success in spite of my failures. I realize this is a blessing many people don’t experience.

This sense of security and unconditional love didn’t always carry over to my relationship with the Lord. When I gave my life to Him as a young child I worried that He would stop loving me if I messed up. Every sin I committed made me drop to my knees, not only asking His forgiveness but asking again for His salvation. I was afraid that if I messed up enough I would not be allowed into Heaven.

The Lord is gracious and compassionate, 
    slow to anger and rich in love.

The Lord is good to all;
    he has compassion on all he has made.

Psalm 145: 8-9

The bible speaks of God being slow to anger at least nine times – three of them in the Psalms. God is compassionate to us. It’s hard sometimes to believe that no matter how may times we mess up He is still waiting to forgive us. He never stops loving us and will not sever His relationship with us because of something we’ve done. However, it is up to us to go to Him and ask forgiveness, accept that forgiveness and draw close to Him once again.

Do you feel far from God? Does it seem right now that you can’t do anything right and your failures are bigger than your successes? 

I encourage you to set aside your feelings and look for the truth of God’s word.

Here are some examples:

“The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” Deuteronomy 31:8

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9

“I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.” Jeremiah 31:3

It seems almost too simple. To believe that every time we mess up – no matter how big or small we believe the sin is, all it takes is for us to say, “sorry Dad” to God. Through the incredible love He has for us he will forgive us every time.

He promises.

Take this promise to heart today. Let the truth of it bring joy to your heart and peace to the puzzle of your life today.

Blessings and peace to you today…