Today a recurring nightmare that I’ve had became my reality. Any time that I have a flight to catch, I have nightmares about missing the flight. Today that happened. I am fully aware that in the grand scheme of things, a missed flight is trivial. There are many other nightmares that would make for a much worse reality. And yet, there were still tears. There was still panic. There was still that sick feeling in the pit of my stomach. When you are the one leading a leadership retreat, getting there well after everyone else is not ideal!
What has struck me the most, as I sit here in the airport during a four hour wait until the next flight, is how far I have come. That may seem strange to be thinking about on a stressful morning. I was thinking back a few years to when I first started flying to MOPS events. I would be wracked with anxiety every time. Just trying to check in my bags felt like an ordeal. Getting on the plane and finding my way around an airport had me shallow breathing and shaky. Now today, I was able to move past the stress within minutes of arriving and securing another flight. I sit in peace and have been able to calmly make arrangements for what needs to be covered until I arrive. Sometimes we don’t recognise the growth within us until we look back and compare.
It can be so easy to focus on our failures, our weaknesses, all the areas that we still want to grow in. Today, let’s look at how far we have come. Take a moment to look back over the past few years. Don’t look for all the ways that you have fallen short of your ideals. Have eyes to see the growth, the strengths that have emerged and the wins along the way. Can you see them?
None of use is the same as we were even a year ago. Life has a way of stretching us and transforming us whether we want it to or not. The only question is whether we will use that stretching and transforming to grow us in healthy ways or in bitter and hard-hearted ways. Do you know that you have a say in that? The choices we make in our day to day lives have a direct impact. Are we tuning in to the good? Are we disciplining our minds to positive thinking patterns? Are we exercising our faith? Are we building our relationship with God and with others? Are we being intentional with learning and developing who we have been uniquely created to be?
Take heart, dear friend. You are a work in progress. You are growing and transforming. You are strong and able to rise from whatever circumstances you find yourself in today. I believe in you.