Sometimes, we just can’t seem to win! We make well-intentioned plans to improve our lives; and yet nothing seems to go our way. So we may wonder: why is it that the business I felt so passionate about can barely get off the ground? Or why is it, that the one person I liked and trusted after so long, betrayed me like all the others? Or how come, after doing everything the doctors told me to, I’m still ill? The recurring disappointments make us wonder if we can go on.
If you’ve ever been plagued by persistent difficulties – in your career or in your relationships – it can make you doubt your abilities; and your worth. Sometimes, we may even wonder if there’s some supernatural force acting against us; a curse of some sort.
Of course, curses exist; but they never work without our acquiescence. In fact, we often curse and bewitch ourselves through our own negative thinking. We lack faith and then claim that things never work out for us. We resemble the Israelites, when God gave them the Promised Land.
God told the Israelites that they could have all the land that they could see. As they approached the River Jordan, Moses sent out twelve spies to investigate the Promised Land. When they returned, while all twelve spies had observed the same land, their reports were vastly different.
Ten of the spies filed an overwhelmingly negative report about the Promised Land. They said that there was indeed milk and honey flowing throughout the land, but there were also giants! “There’s no way we can enter and possess it!” they declared.
Only two spies, Joshua and Caleb, remained optimistic. They acknowledged the obstacles, but also their faith in God’s omnipotence. They said, “Yes, there are giants in the land, but they’re midgets compared to our God. We can take them and the land!”
Yet within a few short days, the ten negative spies had managed to spread panic, doubt and anxiety throughout the camp, so the Israelites went back to the desert and perished. It was to be another forty years before they finally reached the Promised Land.
Many of us are like the Israelites ÔÇô when we come across ‘giants,’ or difficulties, we give up on God’s promises to us. That’s because when we focus on the obstacles instead of our vision, we can’t help but go back to the desert; we must perish!
Sometimes, when things seem to be going wrong ÔÇô for example, we lose our job, or a relationship ÔÇô that’s when things are actually going our way. What we don’t need is leaving our lives and making way for something better. If we can stay focused on what we want, then we must thrive!
No matter how difficult things seem, count your blessings! Zechariah 4:10 reminds us: don’t despise the “day of small things.” Don’t overlook small gains on the way to your big goal. Many times, we don’t appreciate our progress because it doesn’t look like what we expected.
And yet when we embark on a journey from Ghanzi to Francistown, we don’t get to Gaborone and say, “I’ll stop here; this will have to do.” We never turn around at Palapye because we doubt we’ll ever reach Francistown. Instead, we pass many towns along the way and see them as signposts of our progress. We stay focused on our goal; and reach our destination.
The same is true of your other goals: before what you want arrives, you will see many signs of progress. Just as before Columbus reached America, he saw “signs of land” – he saw twigs and birds which indicated to him that land was near. If he had given up, we wouldn’t be talking about Columbus today.
Creating a great legacy is a process, not an event. We build our legacy every day, in incremental steps. Appreciate every step in the journey; don’t settle for less than what you want. Don’t drive back to Ghanzi before you reach Francistown.
Sometimes in life, we may fall prey to naysayers, just as the Israelites did. If you want to be successful, don’t allow the peanut gallery to talk you out of your destiny. Think positively about what you want and it must come to you!
Consider this story of a bunch of frogs, who arranged a running competition. The goal was to reach the top of a very high tower. A big crowd had gathered around the tower to watch the race.
No one in the crowd really believed the tiny frogs would reach the top of the tower. They said: “There’s no chance they’ll ever succeed. The tower is too high!”
Surrounded by negativity; and an apparently insurmountable challenge, one after the other, the tiny frogs collapsed. But some were climbing higher and higher.
The crowd, overcome with doubt and, in some cases, jealousy, continued to yell: “It’s too difficult! No one will make it!” So more tiny frogs were discouraged and gave up.
But one frog continued to climb higher and higher. This one just wouldn’t give up! While all the other frogs dropped out of the race, one frog, after a big effort, reached the top!
All the other frogs clamoured around her. “How did you find the strength to reach your goal?” they asked.
It turned out, that the winning frog was deaf!
She couldn’t buy into perceptions that her goal was too difficult. And she didn’t let the other frogs’ experience jade her, or contribute to negative, self-defeating thought patterns.
If you want to succeed in life, become like the tiny frog ÔÇô deaf to suggestions of failure! If you don’t give up before you win, you must reach your Promised Land!
*Join us for the ‘Power of a Positive Mindset’ Workshop on 6 October 2012, from 3-5pm at Bluetree. TICKETS NOW ON SALE at Riverwalk Information Desk; and Spar shops in Kgale, Broadhurst, Molepolole, Mochudi, or online at: www.webtickets.co.bw. Cost: P350.