Today, I'm happy to turn my blog over to a fabulous author, JoAnn Carter. When you comment, be sure to wish her a belated happy birthday. Her birthday was on Monday, November 15th.
“In your heart you plan your life. But the Lord decides where your steps will take you.” ~ Proverbs 16:9 (New International Reader's Version)
Have you ever set out with a goal, a good and worthy goal, only to become frustrated to the point of giving up? I know I’ve been there—done that. Here’s a recent example… I had a plan. I was going to jog around the neighborhood (1.5 miles) before I hit my 40th birthday. So every morning, out the door I’d go. Bless my sweet husband, he’d come with me as a source of encouragement. However, no matter how hard I tried, it never took long for me to become winded to the point where I needed to walk. I was so disgusted after weeks and weeks of little to no improvement, I decided to quit. My husband, seeing my broken spirit said, “Do you trust me?”
I wondered where this was going but I replied, “Yes, I do.”
“Good. Then tomorrow, let me set the pace.”
The next day, practically dragging my heels, I followed him out the door. But you know what, a remarkable thing happened. I jogged around one loop without stopping! After the appropriate round of high-fives and smiles I stood amazed. I didn’t need to stop and I didn’t feel ready to pass out—granted it wasn’t the whole neighborhood yet, but I went as far as my husband asked simply by matching his steady stride.
You know what the trick was? Pacing.
Okay, so fast forward a month—I’m almost all the way through the neighborhood at this point (just a little side street left to tackle), the boys are back to school, and it’s time to dig back into my writing. I set my writing goals. I’m going to write 2,000 words a day and finish a novel every three months. I have BIG plans of going GREAT places. Guess what? It didn’t take me long to fizzle out. Instead of enjoying writing, embracing the gift of time the Lord had given me to set aside for writing this year, it felt like a burden, a chore! Then it hit me like a 2x4. My pacing was off! Granted some folks may write like a marathon runner, and have great success, but that won’t work for me. I want to love every moment of writing…explore the journey with eager anticipation…follow God and His stride for my day.
I’d like to throw out this challenge, if you’re feeling tired or burned out, check your pacing. Great things can happen if you slow down to enjoy life’s journey. I have proof—although my birthday isn’t until next week, I been jogging completely around the neighborhood for a month and a half now. If I can do that, I know you can face your own personal mountain! Remember the key is taking steps, even baby steps some days, with your focus on Christ.
*Quick writing update (after I wrote this post)—with these little baby steps, I’ve been offered a series contract for three Historical Inspirational Romance novels through Desert Breeze Publishing. The first book The Floating Palace will be released July 15, 2011. My year and a half dry spell is over. God is so good!
Author of Teacher’s Plans, By the Book, Sweet Rest, Smuggler of the Heart, Daniella, The Hamster Wheel, and Finders Keepers