Good Progress

Several years ago, my dad and I were traveling across the country on a drive to Los Angeles. Driving from northeast Texas to California is a long haul, but my dad was confident that I could help him drive it. In mapping out the trip, he decided to take the route less traveled, so we trekked through Wichita Falls, then Amarillo, Albuquerque, New Mexico, and finally Flagstaff, Arizona, where we spent the night. My dad woke me up early the next morning because he didn’t want to be driving through the desert in the heat of the day.

I’ll never forget, traveling down I40, with the sun coming up over our shoulder, seeing a mountain in the distance. My dad said to me, “on the other side of that mountain is Barstow, California.” I got excited, because after all those hours, our destination is in view.

After about an hour or so, I dozed off to sleep  (which is quite normal for me), looking at that mountain. When my eyes opened, I looked up to see the same mountain, still in the distance. I glanced at the clock, to see that an hour had passed. “Did you stop to take a nap?” I asked my dad.

He said, “Nope. Been driving the whole time, and making good progress.”

That simple experience taught me a few lessons, that I periodically have to remind myself.

  1. Progress is a steady, and usually slow process. It is highly unlikely, that you will make a quantum leap towards your destination. You have to submit yourself to the process, no matter how long it is.

  2. Progress doesn’t always feel productive. Traveling down that highway felt like driving on a treadmill, and many times, life feels the same way. We continue to push the gas, but it feels like we’re spinning our wheels. Don’t allow your feelings to discourage you, because many times they aren’t accurate. If you have submitted to the process, and are consistently doing the work, you are making progress, regardless of your feelings.

  3. The distance ahead feels further than the distance behind. It’s the trick of the mind, especially when you can’t see what’s on the other side of the mountain: the closer you get, the further you feel. But you didn’t come all this way to give up now (see #4). Don’t allow the comfort of knowing where you’ve been, to keep you from where you’re going.

  4. You’re closer than you think. Just keep going! (see #3)

  5. Trust the one who’s diving. I could not have made it to L.A. alone, because I was too inexperienced. However, with my dad, I was sure to get there. My father was alert, and aware. He knew where we were, where we were going and how long it was going to take to get there; so I was comfortable enough to close my eyes, and trust him to get me there. We must be the same way with God. He knows where you are, He knows where you’re going, and He is fully aware of how long it will take you to get there; so rest, and enjoy the ride.

Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary (Galatians 6:9, New American Standard Bible).”

© 2016 Derek J. Murphy Enterprises, and I AM KINGDOM Publishing, All Rights Reserved

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