Setbacks are hard. They come disguised as layoff, unemployment, debt, break-up or divorce, etc… These can make us feel like a failure. Setbacks can make us do things we wouldn’t otherwise think of doing. However, in spite of their setbacks, proFAITHsionals move forward!
My recent setback
I had to do something I didn’t want to do. Worst off I didn’t want to admit it either.
I am reluctant to say I was/am moving (back) to Cincinnati. The last two years I’ve been working with my mom on the family business in Cincinnati. Meanwhile, during this period of 24 months I’ve paid for a glorified storage for all my furniture and belongings in Houston: an empty apartment. I’ve been living in Cincinnati while paying rent in Houston. I didn’t want to let go of my housing in Houston because my time in Cincinnati was/is suppose to be temporary.
But as my lease in Houston was expiring and so was my car’s registration, I had to make decisions. I had to do something. The things I didn’t want to do included emptying my apartment and picking up my car. Doing so meant I might be moving out of Houston.
Honestly, I am not yet convinced I’ve moved. Yes, I emptied my apartment. Yes, I drove my car back to Cincinnati. But, I don’t believe I’ve moved yet.
How did I get here
Summer of 2016, I had started and launched an agency (MediaPurposed). I had a good number of leads and potential clients. I am fortunate to have an awesome network of people. Things looked promising. Then, things started shifting. Suddenly, I was not getting call backs. Consequently, everything went quiet for me and my business. The end of 2016 started a downward spiral for me. My business idea started to look like a failure.
Moreover, in December of 2016, my mom had a few staff members leave her. This caused some serious stress on the overall operations of her business. She needed help.
As a result of my situation worsening and my mom being at a loss, we knew we needed to make some tough decisions.. I prayed. I asked what should I do. The answer I received was “Go help mom.”
After that, on January 17, 2017, I arrived in Cincinnati to work with mom. I left my apartment in Houston fully furnished and decorated. I thought I would only be in Cincinnati for 1 month, or 2 months at most.
Now, fast-forward to December 2018. Two years later. Here I am. In Cincinnati. Still..
My most recent transition in and out of Houston looked like a disappointing situation. In a matter of days I gave away everything. Gifted all my furniture. Donated all my clothing. Donated all my shoes. But let me be the first to tell you I do not feel disappointed.
Reading helped keep my emotions in check. Since I knew going to Houston to empty my apartment might be tough, I took a book to inspire and motivate me: “Traveling Light: Releasing the Burdens You Were Never Meant to Carry” by Max Lucado. I might as well say this book is now the story of my life.
I was struck with perspective as I read the following paragraph:
“Or we can follow the example of the apostle Paul. His goal was to be a missionary in Spain. Rather than send Paul to Spain, however, God sent him to prison. Sitting in a Roman jail, Paul could have made [the choice to let his wounded heart consumed his life], but he didn’t. Instead he said, “As long as I’m here, I might as well write a few letters.” Hence your Bible has the Epistles to Philemon, the Philippians, the Colossians, and the Ephesians. No doubt Paul would have done great work in Spain. But would it have compared with the work of those four letters?”Traveling Light by Max Lucado
The phrase that gave me much to think about was: AS LONG AS I’M HERE, I MIGHT AS WELL…
Paul’s life took an unexpected turn. He had plans to travel. Instead, he was sent to prison. I can’t ever compare myself to Paul! Yet, his life gives me hope.
My life took an unexpected turn. From Houston to Cincinnati. I had different plans and expectations. Yet God sent me here instead. Now, I am more convinced than ever that for as long I need to be here, I will continue to do things with purpose. Until my assignment is over, I will not forfeit. After all, I am a proFAITHsional moving forward.
Discerning where you are
Now I turn my attention to you: Where are you now?
And I don’t mean where are you physically reading this. I mean in life.
Where are you in time and space?
And I don’t mean geographically. I mean can you discern this season of your life?
Have you stopped to reflect on the season you’re living now?
Maybe you’re experiencing a great success in this season of your life. Congratulations. But then maybe, just the slightest maybe, you may be living the consequences of a disappointment. And if that’s your case, how are you coping with this disappointment?
You might as well move forward
Allow me (and Max Lucado) encourage you. You may not know how long THIS season will be. However, do what Paul did when his life took an unexpected turn: Give your season purpose.
“As long as I’m HERE, I might as well ____________________________________.” How will you finish the phrase?
The word HERE has a personal definition. Your “here” will be different than my “here”. For some it means a place. To others it means a situation. A few may see it as an emotion. Here could even mean a relationship. But, regardless of what it means to you, what matters is what you decide to do.
You won’t be in THIS season forever. You won’t be “here” forever. And as long as you’re here, what will you do as you move forward?
Be a proFAITHsional who moves forward.