Thursday, May 20, 2010

Just When I Had It All Figured Out....

How long do you have to do something before you know there might be a better way? And, when you find that out, how long until you actually try the better way?

As I've mentioned before, I am a fairly capable git'er done kind of girl. I don't usually look for challenges because I figure I'm doing pretty well just the way I am. That has all changed recently.

I was challenged to enter a triathlon. Technically a mini-triathlon, but there is really nothing mini to me about swimming a 1/2 mile, riding a bike for 12 miles, and running a 5k.


Without a nap in between.

In accepting this challenge, I have started training and learning to do things a different way. Like swimming. I always knew how to swim, but apparently there is a right way to breathe so as not to hyperventilate. When I was at the Y trying to swim laps, the life guard was very helpful, telling me how to position my head in the water and showing me a better way to kick. At first the normal "I know what I'm doing" voice wanted to override his advice, but then I realized that he might really know something that I don't.

The same thing happened when I became a Christian, but this time it was the Word of God letting me know there was a better way. I started seeing that my regular way of thinking and doing things might not be the best way, even though learning a new way was not always easy. Like learning a new way to swim, I had to be focused and intentional about the thoughts I was entertaining and the choices I was making. It did not come naturally at first. There are a lot of days that it still doesn't come naturally, when I want to go back to old habits and routines, and I find myself floundering like a drowning girl, wondering what went wrong. It would be silly at that point to insist that my way is best, when clearly it isn't. The Bible gives us everything we need for life and godliness, so that is where I should look for direction and counsel.

So, if I listen to the right advice and train diligently, I might actually survive this triathlon. 'Scuse me. Mini-triathlon. And this thing called Life.

How about you? Spring is a time of new beginnings and fresh starts. What have you decided to do, or what has been decided for you, that will challenge everything you thought you knew? Leave a comment, share your thoughts, let me celebrate your challenges with you. Any opportunity to grow and learn is a cause for celebration, even if it doesn't feel like it at the time.

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