Yesterday morning I as listening to a podcast recommended by a friend and the speaker said something pretty powerful - it really should have been included in Step 1 but here it is:
"The faith to step out is worthless without the faithfulness to stick it out". (Steven Furtick)
Isn't that powerful? Read it again, let it sink in.
Now - it sort of goes with Step 2, as well, in that in my opinion the next super important thing a person needs to do is stay plugged in. What does this look like? What does it even mean?
If you are married, staying plugged in means regularly spending time together building the relationship...date nights, getaways, notes to each other, dreaming together about your future, reading books and/or listening to podcasts about building a great marriage, spend time with couples who are committed to one another, etc. Life is busy, work is often stressful, then there are money issues and struggles with parenting and before you know it, you are unplugged and things begin to fall apart. I don't believe anyone enters a marriage planning to divorce but if time and energy are not invested in the relationship by staying plugged in - oftentimes that is what happens.
Staying plugged in when I was a consultant in Mary Kay meant that I regularly attended sales meetings and company events. It was important for me to spend time around people who had already walked the path I was headed down. It was important to hear how others set and achieved the same goals I was working towards, how they overcame obstacles, and what it was like on the other side. Just hearing the stories once wasn't enough. I needed to be regularly reminded that the journey was worth it in the end!
If a person sets a goal to lose weight or get in shape or quit smoking, it is important to stay connected to others who are working through the same challenges...or better yet, someone who has worked through the same challenges and came out successful on the other side! You can do this by building personal relationships, reading good books on the subject or listening to podcasts about building good habits but if you set a goal to develop a new habit and never remind yourself why you set the goal in the first place, it will not take long before you are right back where you started walking out your life with the same daily habits.
For me, listening to that podcast yesterday reminded me that in order for me to fulfill all that I believe God has called me to, I need to stay plugged in to God's Word by reading good books and regularly listening to podcasts or services on-line. It reminds me of my goals, it reminds me of the person I want to be, it reminds me that I am not in it alone, it encourages me and helps me learn and grow in new strategies.
What does staying plugged in look like for you? How can you continue to feed the passion and fuel the commitment that you experienced in the beginning?