Do you keep fighting?
I have read book after book and blog after blog encouraging me not to give up on my dreams. Keep pushing. Keep fighting. Keep praying.
Get this social media account AND that social media account.
Write a blog.
Get a podcast.
Get a YouTube channel.
Send email blasts.
Don’t give up!
Seriously, I’m exhausted just typing all these things we must do every single day to never give up.
But here’s a question to ponder?
Have you ever considered that maybe you should “give up?”
I know this is going to be a hard post to share, but what if it is time to “give up?”
Hear me out…
I just finished reading an amazing book by Tim Tebow called Shaken. If you have not read this book, I highly recommend it. You will be blessed.
If you are unfamiliar with Tim Tebow please take some time to learn about him. The short version I will share is, he was born to missionary parents, the youngest of five, was homeschooled, was a high school football star, played quarterback for the University of Florida where he won two National Championships. He won the Heisman Trophy in his sophomore year of college. He is a godly example. Works very hard. Highly competitive. Yet – he only played in the NFL as quarterback three years and was cut three painful times by different NFL teams.
In Tim Tebow’s mind it does not make sense for him to not be playing football. He’s only in his mid 30’s right now and could still realistically be playing football in the NFL had God not directed his life differently. In his book Shaken he shares his pain, his questions to God, his self-pity and doubt. But he also shares how amazed he is how God has used him in a mighty way to bring others to Jesus Christ. Tim Tebow has reached so many people through his amazing foundation that brings joy to children, his prison ministry where he has led death row inmates to Jesus Christ, his speaking, and through his books.
As hard as it has been for Tim Tebow to come to terms with not having the football career he dreamed of, he is grateful that God has used him in a mighty way regardless.
I have always wanted to be a speaker. Prior to becoming a Christian in my early thirties, I wanted to be a motivational speaker. When I asked Jesus Christ to be my Lord and Savior, fifteen years ago, I figured that’s why I was never a motivational speaker, I was supposed to be a Christian speaker, sharing Jesus Christ through my speaking. Yes, that’s what held me back or at least that’s what I thought. For ten years, I have tried almost everything I could think of to launch a speaking ministry.
I paid for profiles on speaking ministry websites, I contacted churches to share my message. I advertise myself on social media. I have written on my blog. I wrote for Christianity Today. I have very popular articles with Christianity Today where I advertise my speaking through my bios on those articles. However, for ten years, I have probably had a total of eight – you heard me – eight speaking opportunities! Not even 10…Not even one per the past ten years!
Last year I finally felt like the time had come! I had three amazing opportunities to share a wonderful message on value to women. Using the story of Hagar, I shared a powerful message on how God sees us, loves us and values us as women. These three messages last year were all back-to-back and I knew it was finally the time. I just had to be patient.
I shared this message to a group of 300 women at a Christmas dinner at a very large church in my city. It was amazing. I received outstanding feedback. This message really touched the women who were there.
I had concluded that God had not opened other doors because I had to believe in myself and that’s what was stopping me before. The Christmas speaking dinner to 300 women grew my confidence like crazy!
I spent weeks after that Christmas dinner sending beautiful bio sheets to women ministry directors sharing this amazing message about Hagar. (In fact, I had purchased a Christian business ministry book that taught how to write beautiful speaking bio sheets and even encouraged sending the bio sheets out to churches) I sent hundreds of letters out directly to women ministry directors. It took me hours and days to do this, but I was confident this was finally it!
These letters were personally addressed to women ministry directors by their name. I even personalized some things about their church to make it as personal as possible. I was so excited about this Hagar message! After weeks – and months – of sending hundreds of letters out – I did not receive any response. Not even a response thanking me for reaching out.
The only responses I did receive were from churches where I actually knew someone on staff, however, nothing ever materialize from that – but as far as the other hundreds of churches…
Me and my husband prayed and spent time asking God to bless this effort. We prayed and asked God to open more doors.
It didn’t make any sense to me.
Every time I shared this message, I could feel God’s presence. I could see women respond. I saw tears as I was standing in front of them speaking. This was a powerful message that truly moved so many women to believe in themselves.
I was so baffled at why God would not allow this message to go further.
Not to mention I took speaking seriously. I would pray and pray and sit in my closet and pray some more. I would rehearse for weeks asking God to revamp the message to speak directly to a different audience. I endured spiritual attacks like crazy every time I was about to speak. When I arrived at one church, a director told me the message must be a powerful message because they had endured nothing but spiritual attacks prior to my arrival.
I knew this was a message God wanted me to share.
However, like the past ten years, my efforts have not produced the dream I had hoped for.
What do you do when you have tried, and it seems to fail?
Yet you try again – and fail again.
Only to see the same results.
What do you do when you have a dream, a passion you feel God gave you…and it doesn’t seem like that dream will come true?
Please don’t misread this post. I am not having a pity-party here, rather – a revelation of His goodness. Do you want the same?
To be continued…
Saleama A. Ruvalcaba, MATS
Do you know Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior? If not email me today and I will pray with you.
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