I love success stories, but the older I become the less intrigued I am by the eventual worldly “success” in these stories. The success part is great, but the unwavering perseverance to do, be or become something is what speaks to me.
The staying of the course, rain or shine, is the real story in the story.
No doubt you have heard of comedian and TV personality Steve Harvey. His rise from nobody, to somebody, to a Christian somebody, is one such story.
Before Steve had any real success, he was a broke no name comedian traveling from town to town for stand-up comedy gigs. Much like a not yet famous musical band traveled from town to town, but he was traveling alone.
During this lonely stretch he lived mostly out of his car, sent every dime he made back home, slept at rest stops, fished out of people’s road side ponds and not for fun, but for food.
Not a glamorous time in his life but here is the part that speaks to me….
He didn’t just have to show up for work and quietly do “a job”, he had to show up for work, stand on a stage, and be funny! He had to be funny when nothing around him was easy, or funny. That had to be hard some days, but he did it anyway. Rain or shine.
Hold that thought but let’s change people….
Several years ago, like Steve Harvey did at some point, I gave my life to Christ. After almost 46 years of living I told God that I would dedicate the remainder of my life to Him.
God said that’s great, I want you to write and I want you to boldly share your faith. Wait, what?
Buy a Jesus sticker for my truck, go to church “most” Sundays, keep my faith quietly to myself, be a good person, die one day and go to heaven was more of what I had envisioned.
God said that’s fine, if that’s all you want. You can be on the team and sit the bench, but you have repeatedly asked for my “plan” for your life, and for now that’s it. So, you want the ball or not?
I chose the ball. By early 2016 I was both writing and sharing my faith through a blog that God sent a man to build for me. I did this, with consistency, for about a year and a half, and God blessed the effort.
He built a platform for The1SixProject and assembled an ever-growing group of people to support and promote it. As the writing platform grew, so did my faith, and as my faith grew so did my writing. They complement each other, I never saw that coming.
The project rolled along until one day, I all but stopped writing. Why? Because it started to rain.
What started as I’ll write tomorrow, became next week, then the next. The calling to write never left me, I just ignored it. There were more pressing things in my life that required my attention, or so I thought. I basically, just left the game and took my seat on the bench. God never said a word.
I stayed true to my faith, I just stopped being obedient to God’s call on my life.
Somewhere around the end of last year I read Steve Harvey’s story, and it stuck in my mind. Specifically, the part about him having to show up and be funny, no matter what, rain or shine. I began to see myself in that story except, I was not showing up at all.
Inspired by Steve’s commitment to work his gift, regardless of circumstances, I made the commitment to be obedient to God’s call and write 52 stories in 2019. Rain or shine.
So, ponder this… What is your gift? What is the “thing” that you felt led by God to do, or to put to work, when you got in the boat? What is it and more importantly, what are you doing with it this very day?
When you identify your gift and put it to work for Christ you open a huge conduit for God to speak to you and work in your life.
When you share your gift, then you become the conduit that God works through to speak to and work in the lives of others. That’s how it works.
If you haven’t put your gift to work yet, take a deep breath and start, even if it is just a little. If you have put it on the shelf, pick it back up and put it back to work.
Either way, get in the game and stay in the game…. Rain or Shine.
Get in the boat. Do your part!
From Nose to Toes.
Shane / #16