On May 21, 1927, American aviator Charles Augustus Lindbergh emerged from a single-seat, single-engine monoplane called The Spirit of St. Louis after completing a 33.5 hour non-stop solo flight from New York City to Paris. While many others attempted this feat prior to Lindbergh, it was the first time that such an endeavor was ever successfully completed. Lindbergh’s famous first words after his amazing flight were simply, “Well, I did it.”
And though I haven’t procured a pilot’s license (Although my husband has! Way to go, Sweetie!) or completed any transatlantic flights, I have done exactly what I set out to do since my last post just three years ago. So I am feeling a little Lindbergh-ish as I ironically declare from my Laz-y-Boy that I have indeed made some necessary changes and am currently reaping and enjoying the rewards of a much healthier lifestyle.
I am also blogging again. Miracles truly never cease.
Now I could bore you with the nuts and bolts of my weight loss journey, but I’m not going to do that. I have learned that when most people ask about your own personal weight loss, what they are hoping to hear is that it involves a bizarre yet intriguing ritual of cupcakes, vodka, sex, and maybe hula-hooping. We all want that magic bullet. We want the easy-out. I witness this every time I burst someone’s bubble by telling them that weight loss indeed involves some sort of semi-starvation and/or brutal physical abuse. A dazed and distant look settles in on the listener, and he or she eventually finds something else more interesting to focus on in the room: a paint chip; a dust bunny.
I am no different. Yes, I was able to drop a few pounds, and for some strange reason I am one of the weirdos who actually does enjoy exercise. But there are things in my life that I would just rather snap my fingers and make happen. I don’t want to have to work hard for absolutely EVERYTHING. Case in point: Blogging. You see, I have a dream. I want to write. I want to write a bestseller, and go on a book tour, and do a speaking circuit. If I lived alone on a mountain top in Tibet, I could probably accomplish this goal. Although the WI-fi might be a little iffy. The sheer number of interruptions I experience during a single blog post composition would BOGGLE YOUR MIND. And so I wake up. And reality sets in. I have four kids, ages 10 and under, who haven’t eaten yet today. I have laundry piles that nearly reach the ceiling. I have no idea what we’re eating for dinner tonight. I haven’t been able to consume anything today except a Coke Zero. Also, I haven’t yet brushed my teeth today. Hey, something has to get sacrificed if I am going to write this blog post!
Most of the time we put off what we know we need to do today because we see where we want to be in 5 years, and it feels overwhelming. The road looks long, hard, and ugly. Many times it even looks tedious and boring. And I think this is what trips me up the most. I can handle hard and ugly. I have delivered four children au naturale, after all. It’s the long, boring, and tedious that I just cannot stand. Will the sweaty, fumbling workout I do today really make a difference in the long run? Will this one measly little blog post gain the attention of an editor and get me that long-awaited book deal?
Most likely, no.
Thomas Edison once said, “There is no substitute for hard work.” This is a truth we all know deep down. Human beings aren’t afraid of hard work. He also said, “Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.” And “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” Want another one? “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”
We may not always love hard work, but I don’t necessarily think we are afraid of it. What we are afraid of is failure. Working hard for no return. Spinning our wheels only to find ourselves stuck even deeper in the mud.
And so, we give up.
I don’t know what the future holds, but I know the One who holds the future. I know that we have been given Today as a gift. Time and space are ours today, our gift from God. What are we going to do with it?
Thinking too much about the road ahead makes us weary. We will stumble and fall under the enormous weight of it all. We are too weak to carry that burden. If we look at how many pounds we have to lose, instead of how many we’ve already lost, our perspective gets skewed. We get discouraged. We give up.
Today, I’d like to encourage you to pick it back up, whatever “it” is for you. One. More. Time. Because maybe, just maybe, this one small, seemingly insignificant step will be a catalyst for great change in your life. It’s been said that big changes start with small steps. And we will reap a harvest if we DO NOT GIVE UP!
The present is God’s gift to us. Let’s open it and see what’s inside! Make that phone call. Finish that workout. Write that email. Craft. That. Blog post! Do whatever is on your heart to do today, so that when you lie down at night to rest you, too, can confidently say, “Well, I did it.”
I just did.