Despite What THEY Say 6


Perhaps you should reconsider.

On vacation in Puerto Rico, the plan was to ring in my 40’s with an adventure. As I made arrangements for waterfall repelling and zip lining, the subject of weight came up. They wanted to know who in our party was over 200 pounds.

Oh, that’s me.

She paused, then explained how she doubted my ability to handle the rigors of the experience. I shared I was a runner and quite fit. She wasn’t convinced.

Undaunted, I stuck to the plan. But her words left a mark. I woke the next morning terrified of what might happen, and doubtful of my ability.

What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail?

Many versions of this question spread around the country via coaches, motivational speakers, and pastors. They tell stories of the “unlikely.” The unlikely are folks who overcame insurmountable odds and accomplished what they said was impossible. Suddenly, a pipe dream became the floor of the monument they’d build upon the rest of their lives. The potential for failure is now a check mark, achieved by the unlikely.

Who are you to desire greatness?

Rather than using achievements of the unlikely for momentum, we often choose to agree with fear. Well-meaning folks who decide it’s their duty to help us avoid disappointment. We entertain them until it sounds like our own voice.

But how exactly does that work? Is fear-motivated thinking a fair exchange for hope? It would appear that disappointment is okay, as long as it’s not at the expense of our own time and hands. Not true.

Who are “they” to dull your shine?

Granted, we love “they.” We believe in their good intentions and pure motives. However, when it comes to vision and goals, we should treat certain responses as hostile. For example, loving attempts to protect you from rejection can shield you from being accepted. Suggesting you fit in hinders you from shining, standing out to lead a movement.

When “they” are enemies or so-called pundits, it’s easier to to ignore the shouts. But it takes courage and resolve to ignore whispers of people who genuinely love you. Get quiet and listen for the ones who question, “Who are they?” Hold them close.

Shine on!

The time is now. Choose to live like the unlikely. Aim high. Try new things. Give it your all. Decide to have faith in being God’s handiwork, created to do good things prepared just for you. There will always be voices yelling from the sidelines. Tune into the cheers and block out the rest.


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