The greatest failures in life are often followed by the greatest successes.
In 1972 there was the story of the plane that crashed in the Andes mountains. The people survived for two long months by becoming cannibals in order to stay alive, they began to eat each other as the people died in the plane crash. When rescuers finally found them, the survivors were shocked to realize that they were only six miles from a resort hotel where the plane had crashed.
What is the point of this story? I think one of the points of the story is that too often we stop too soon, we give up!. We stop at where we are and get discouraged and disappointed and it’s bitter and we don’t like it and it’s distasteful and we stay there. The message is — Don’t Quit!
The question I have for you is, How do you get from discouragement to being in your sweet spot? How do you get from the place of disappointment to the place of delight?
The answer is, You just keep on going. Keep on going! Moving ahead, trusting God. When I was a pastor I would have people come to me and say, “Pastor, I don’t feel like praying. I don’t feel like reading the Bible. I don’t feel like going to church. I don’t feel like tithing my money. I don’t feel like getting involved. I don’t feel like trusting. What should I do?”
My answer was simple: You keep on praying. You keep on giving. You keep on serving. You keep on trusting. You keep on reading your Bible. You keep on going to church. “But my heart isn’t in it!” So what?
If you were to wake up tomorrow morning and call your boss at work and say, “I know that you want me to be whole hearted at work. You want me to feel gung ho and put my whole heart into it. I just have to be honest with you. My heart’s not in it today. I really just don’t feel like coming in. Because I know you don’t want me to be a hypocrite, I think I’ll just stay home and watch tv today. I don’t feel like going to work, so I think I’ll cover up with a little cover and get a good book and take it easy, eat some potato chips and relax. When I feel like it, I’ll be back. Ok?”
The fact of the matter is, most of what gets done in the world is done by people who don’t feel like it. Maturity is living by your commitments, not your feelings.
One morning I woke up and said to Julie, “Julie, I don’t want to go to church today.” She said, “You’re going to church!” I said, “Why?” She said, “Two reasons: 1) You’re 37 and, 2) you’re the pastor.”
You just keep on going. Don’t give up!