Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Finding success by inches

This week's quote is:
"By perserverance the snail reached the ark."
~Charles Spurgeon~

Some of the most frustrating victories I've won in my spiritual life are those that I've won by inches.

I write each novel page by page, sometimes agonizing and praying over each word on that page to be sure I get it just right to get the message across that God intends.

By inching along page by page, I write the story God lays on my heart. Some days I want to quit because 60,000+ words is a lot of words. I don't feel like writing, the well of inspiration feels dry, I have tons of other things more pressing to do at that moment. But as I labor along page by page, it gets done.

I'm on a diet right now and I'm agonizing over each pound - I'm sure many of you have been there too! It took years to add them all - there's no way to short cut the process of taking them off again.

Some days I don't think I can face another salad or getting on my Gazelle to do the necessary exercise, but I do it just the same, pushing myself inch by inch toward my goal of a healthier life.

During a period of dark depression, I kept praying God would just take away the pain, but He had some very important lessons for me to learn in the day-by-day recovery time. The healing process hurt, but the little victories along the way gave me hope that I would be depression free someday - and 4 years later, I was.

OK - you've got the picture - we all fight battles. It's part of our spiritual lives to fight that good fight of faith. There's no way around it. But rather than getting bent out of shape or frustrated by how slow those victories seem to add up, we can change how we view them.

1. Look at the lessons learned rather than how hard it has been to learn them. As I struggle with each pound, I need to focus on what I'm learning about healthy eating - to ingrain those habits into my life. God wants me to learn these lessons well so I can be a better steward of my body.

2. Keep looking forward. When things are moving slowly, the scenery around me doesn't change very fast so I need to keep my eyes focused on the goal rather than what's just happened. Okay, I have the proverbial writer's block. I can either groan and go back to bed or keep on praying and trying to write. It's my choice.

3. Rejoice over each victory, no matter how small. When I lose 1 pound, it's still 1 pound! When I feel like I can't write and I manage to get 10 words down on paper, I have accomplished a lot. I need to celebrate that as a victory because it is! It's a step in the right direction. Every day I wake up and feel the Son shining in my soul, it's a good day.

Be the snail. Keep inching forward until you eventually reach the safety of the ark. And remember - you might experience some rain, but God will hold back the torrential downpours until you get to the ark because He loves you.
This week, Debbie is hosting "In 'Other' Words" at her site, Chocolate and Coffee . If you'd like to participate, simply blog about the quote on your site, then visit Debbie and leave your URL in the Mr. Linky box. Be sure to leave her a comment while you're visiting there.

If you'd like, visit the blogs of the others who are participating and read their takes on the great quote Debbie has chosen today.


MiPa said...

Thank you for this. What a blessing you are!

Susan said...

Bonnie, this was awesome...

I really needed to read this today.

I love your take on this quote.

Blessings to you my friend♥

Laurie Ann said...

Very wise words. May God bless you as you persevere toward your goals in life. Thank you so much for sharing your heart today.

Denise said...

This was such a good post, be blessed.

~ Mhay ~ said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts BOnnie. It encouraged me today :)

God bless!

Chris said...

Very encouraging post-real life can be a bummer if we look at it in the flesh-keeping our eyes on Jesus, the author and finisher of our race-that is they key-and praise God He delivered you from depression-AMEN!!

LauraLee Shaw said...

Incredible wisdom and advice. So glad I stumbled upon your blog. What a beautiful person you are!