“For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands.” — 2 Timothy 1:6, NIV
My son recently received a recruitment brochure from the U.S. Marine Corps which contained the following phrase, “You have to want it.” As I read that statement I realized that it is true about anything we desire to achieve in life. Talent, timing, and opportunity are not enough. You have to be passionate enough to persevere when the odds are stacked against you, response is minimal, and no one else seems interested in what you have to offer.
As a new author, I was recently reminded of this very fact when only one person showed up for a long-awaited book signing at a prominent local bookstore. Although I’d experienced a low turnout at previous book signings, I had hoped that the attendance at this particular event would be better, especially given the popularity of the bookstore and all the effort that had gone into marketing the event. Yet I knew that when all was said and done, God would have the final say and the results would be in his hands.
It is easy to give up a dream when we focus only on what we want. But God will give us the strength and passion to persevere when what we want is also what He wants. I know that God desires for me to share his message of hope with those around me and that he has gifted me with the words to share his truths through the devotionals and books I write. When I cease measuring my success by the number of books I sell or the people who show up at book signings and focus instead on the message God has given me to share, then hearts will be encouraged and lives will be impacted, if only one at a time.
If you are using your gifts to serve God and minister to others, do not be discouraged if success appears elusive. Instead, rest in the assurance that God knows your heart and your passion, and he is doing behind the scenes more than you can imagine. As you live to make a difference in the lives of others, that one person you encourage today will in turn encourage another with the same message of hope. Do your best, persevere with passion, and leave the results to God.
If your passion has fizzled out, remember: “It only takes a spark to keep a fire going, and soon all those around will warm up in its glowing. That’s how it is with God’s love, once you’ve experienced it. You spread His love to everyone; you want to pass it on.” (Kurt Kaiser)
Copyright © 2011 by Dee Dee Wike. All rights reserved. www.deedeewike.com