I woke up Saturday and Sunday morning greeting bleak skies and a thin blanket of ice delicately masking trees and grass. It’s the kind of weather which drives me to retreat under covers (as long as our daughter Nai will let me) and grab hold of leggings and boots.
And, well, friends, these last few years have remained full of challenges and disappointments. I sometimes struggle with gnawing depression and doubt, yet each time these feelings threaten to obscure my vision, God sends a word either through a song, conversation, preached word or a physical sign (mine is deer) I pray to see daily.
Wisdom from an Email
Yesterday, I heard this message loudly after clicking on a link from an email sent by Jonathan Morrow, renowned blogger and social media strategist: “keep going, pushing, no matter what…”
The longer I ingested his words about following your dreams relentlessly and shutting out negativity, the more determined I became to start blogging again. Yes, school took up lots of time this past month, but let me stand in some truth with y’all. I hit a creative slump.
I could post on Instagram for the blog, but somehow I couldn’t push myself to write here. Frankly, I spread myself thin, and all I craved was sleep or escape in those rare spare moments.
But if this is what I love doing (and I do), being present, communicating and interacting with you all in this space has to become a priority, too. Writing, for me, is a lifeline. And when I am shut off from it, part of me begins to wither.
Circumstances Do Not Define Us
Jon has a neuromuscular disorder called Spinal Muscular Atrophy, which makes his body weak; he cannot move from the neck down, and yet, he founded a successful blog (On Moneymaking), sold it for five figures and is an Associate Editor of Problogger, one of the most popular blogs in the world.
Consider this… He speaks his thoughts into a machine because he cannot type them out. This didn’t deter him from excelling in blogging, social media strategy and developing courses to help his fellow writers. And oh how these words resonate deeply:
Because listen … I know it’s horribly cliché, but if I can quit my job, risk the government carting me off to a nursing home because I can’t afford my own healthcare, convince my poor mother to abandon her career and drive my crippled butt 3,000 miles to a foreign country, and then make enough money to support myself, my mother, my father, and an entire nursing staff using nothing but my voice, then what can you accomplish if you really set your mind to it?
My guess: pretty much anything.
No, it won’t be easy. At some point, I guarantee you’ll want to quit. I guarantee people will treat you like you’re insane. I guarantee you’ll cry yourself to sleep, wondering if you made a horrible mistake.
But never stop believing in yourself. The world is full of naysayers, all of them eager to shout you down at the slightest indication you might transcend mediocrity, but the greatest sin you can commit is to yourself become one of them. Our job isn’t to join that group, but to silence it, to accomplish things so great and unimaginable that its members are too awed to speak.
After I reached the end of his article, I thought, what the heck is stopping me? Me. I am! Maybe you are, too? Far too many of us allow fear of failure and suffocating feelings of inadequacy to stifle our dreams.
The good news?
You and I can get out of our own way.
When the negative thoughts and words come (as they will), counter each one with affirmations, begin to speak the language of possibility, call those things not as though they were (Romans 4:17).
Keep pushing. Keep going.
Victory is already yours.