12 SEP 2017

Just Keep Swimming

Though it may be cooling down in other parts of the country, here in Central Arizona, it is still hotter than most people experience all year. This seemingly endless summer offers us one (and possibly only one) benefit: a protracted swimming season. This summer, my husband and I have been swimming laps in our pool before we get to work and now that September is in full swing, we have noticed that the pool finally isn’t bath-water temperature in these early mornings any more. It’s a welcome early sign that cooler weather will come.

This last week, I was particularly tired. I’m not a morning person to begin with, I haven’t had my tea and I hadn’t slept well the night before. Nevertheless, we swam every last intended lap, but I felt I was slower than usual, especially on the turns. Upon the final arrival at the wall, I said to Tim, “I’m sorry I was so slow today.” My sweet man, in his typical “it doesn’t matter how full the glass is, it’s always enough for me” attitude said, “Sweetie, you did great! You were tired, but you just kept swimming. You didn’t give up.”

This kind of encouragement made my heart flip-flop for this guy all over again, even as I wearily responded between breaths, “Is that really all that matters?”

“Yes,” he whispered in my ear. “I’m so proud of you.”

The last few months have been an exciting challenge for me in my ministry. There are days I’m flying high and days I feel like throwing in the towel.

But I never do.

I just keep swimming, no matter how slow or how discouraged I am.

This is not to toot my own horn. I am sure there are others of you out there feeling like throwing in that towel right this very minute. Don’t do it! Remember why you started and keep obedience to God as your benchmark of success. Your Abba is thrilled with your determination despite the onslaught. He is excited for what He has ahead of you. He is cheering you on even when His voice feels drown out by your own straining cries.

Hear His tender voice whisper in your ear, “Don’t feel bad about how tough this is. This beautiful offering of obedience to me is all that matters. I’m so proud of you! Just keep swimming.”

“… straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:13-14