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I took my daughter to the water park a few weeks ago and I couldn’t help but realize how each element of the water park can be seen as a step towards a BIG goal. Each step has its own joy. Yet, each step also has it own set of traps. If we are are not careful we can fall into those traps and lose sight of the large overall goal we set out to accomplish.
The parking lot
Here is where we hover, thinking “could we” . We wonder if we are capable of joining in the fun, joining in the ranks, becoming all we dreamed we could be.
Here is where we watch up close. We see the activity. We desire to jump in but we are just not there yet.
Still sidelines but we are researching
Book in hand we decide to research. We tell ourselves that way when we take the plunge we will know better how to not make mistakes. So many of us get stuck right here at this stage, never taking a step closer; always researching, always wanting to learn more before we take the plunge.
This is a fear trap, don’t get stuck, give yourself a time limit for researching then whether you feel ready or not jump into the next stage.
More than likely you will feel the ….or not…but push through it…it is a trick of the devil to make you live a less than life.
The kiddy pool.
Slowly slowly inching forward towards the plunge. We get our feet wet.
The splash pad
Here we dip our feet. We dabble in what we desire.We are not fully committed just yet. We tell others we are just having fun with it because we are afraid still of what others might say. They might say our idea is silly, or that we can’t possible do it and the truth is we are still trying to convince ourselves that it is not silly and we can do it .
Push through those voices telling you, you can’t, believe you can, because YOU CAN.
The big kid pool
We are so close now we are in more than we are out. The parking lot is far away. We think to ourselves “this is fun, I am in the midst of it now perhaps I don’t have to go all the way” “here is safe”.
Here we gain access to those that have gone down the road of our dream before. We are not just reading about them we are now meeting them. We might brush elbows with them at a conference or we send them an email and they answer back.
Our dream surrounds us now. It touches almost every aspect of our life but we still have not fully achieved it yet.
The trap of the big kid pool is that it can get really comfortable. We become surrounded by masses of comfortable people. We start viewing those that are behind us with the dangerous thought of “well I have done better than they have”. We start viewing those ahead of us with the goal crushing thought of “that really is just for the super gifted people,, it is not for NORMAL people like me”.
The gentle slide
Very few make it out of the big kid pool, but those that do often get tricked by the gentle slide. The gentle slid requires just as much steps as the plunge…or does it. It leaves out one vital step FAITH. Faith that God really created us to be enough. Faith that He will carry us through to the end of the plunge. Faith that He will guide us. Faith that He has a great adventure awaiting us if we will just take that last step.
We do it. We step out in faith. We have completed all the steps. Done all the ground work, we are finally ready to PLUNGE IN.
So many people never make it past the “observing with book in hand step” others get stuck in the big kid pool trying to convince themselves that is far enough, but the few that make it through all the steps and take the plunge never seem to regret it.
Others skip all the steps and plunge right in, no observation needed, no dip in the kiddy pool to warm up their sense of adventure. I admire those people but being a snail pacer I want to let others of you who are paralyzed by the plunge know it is okay to take it slow just as long as you don’t get stuck along the way.
Because the plunge is worth it. The plunge is what makes life worth living. The plunge is where God meets you, holds your hand and carries you through. Life is never as thrilling as it is in those moments when God holds your hand.
Readers where are you on your journey from parking lot to plunge? Where ever you are don’t get stuck. Keep making progress. Keep pressing on towards your ultimate goal.
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