The confetti had all been swept up. The goals were set. The New Year's hats and horns were all put away. The Christmas decorations were boxed up and already forgotten.
Entering onto the scene is excited Ruth January 1, 2020! After much prayer and consideration, she decided to declare 2020 as her year of breakthrough. 2019 was her “year of me” and she had made some major progress and changes! She was so fired up and ready with so many goals, dreams, ideas, and most importantly, excitement!
January and February were FIRE! She had hit all of her fitness goals. She had laid the foundation for several other goals to fall into place and then, you guessed it…MARCH = COVID = NOT WHAT SHE HAD PLANNED!
Can I get a witness here?? Anyone? Anyone?
I, like most everyone else, was hopeful that it would be over quickly and we’d be back to normal. Boy was I WRONG!! Begin the derailment now…
One of my goals of 2020 was to open the Metro trailer stage more times in 2020 than in any of our other 27 years of ministry! I was ready to say yes to every outreach opportunity that came my way! I was so excited. Little did I know that it would 8 MONTHS INTO THE YEAR before I would open the trailer for ministry ONCE! 8 MONTHS!!!
This is not what my breakthrough was supposed to look like!
I survived quarantine. I survived weeks of online church and online coaching and even online Zumba instructing! I survived the temptation to eat chips and cookies while being trapped in my home (most of the time!) And I SOAKED UP the memories created with puzzles, board games, giggles, movie nights and cuddles with my kids.
But then came August!
I had just celebrated my 46th birthday and realized I had not even come close to several of my goals. Some goals I missed because of COVID and others because of excuses that I blamed on COVID! All of a sudden, like a tsunami drowning me, I was riddled with shame. The enemy began to put a scarlet letter of SHAME on me daily. “You have no more purpose. You have not done anything you set out to do. You have not had breakthrough, only breakdown!” HE IS SUCH A LIAR AND A COWARD! I took hit after hit! I listened to lie after lie! I almost started to believe it!
On Thursday August 27th I was tired of the beating and ready for my breakthrough! Something within me rose up! I sat at a table across from my husband and spilled my pain! I vocalized what I had been internalizing! I took a deep breath and faced the lion! I got face to face with my enemy and served him notice that he will not shame me anymore and that my breakthrough was still on its way!
The gloves were off and I was ready to fight!
Let me break it down for you! Sometimes things don’t turn out like we thought they would. Let’s be honest, most of the time things don’t turn out exactly like we thought they would! We can choose to be derailed or developed! We can choose to give up or grow! We can choose to allow the pain of the past to attack us or advance us! We can drown in our excuses or we can move forward in our expectations! We have all the tools, but they are useless if we don't dig into the toolbox and USE THEM!
Breakthrough comes by BREAKING THROUGH! It comes by digging in and not backing down. It comes by not quitting, even when our spirit, mind, body and soul tell us to quit! It comes by believing that GOD said it so it’s done!
If you know me, you know I am into fitness. I have had a lot of breakthrough moments in my fitness journey. My first ever half marathon was a TOTAL BREAKTHROUGH and it was the beginning of my journey! My feet wanted me to quit. My body told me it was too hard. My mind even tried to convince me at times to give up, but I knew what the finish line would look and feel like so I didn’t quit. I broke through and finished victoriously!
In 2018 I completed a Spartan Sprint race. I was post knee surgery and still to this day struggle with knee pain. This race happened in AT&T stadium and involves climbing hundreds maybe even thousands of stairs. At one point, I came to one section where we had to grab a weighted sandbag before climbing the next set of stairs. They gave me a choice, the 20lb “women’s” bag or the 50lb “men’s” bag. I was insulted at even the thought that they were labeled that way. I said “pfffttt” to the guy, grabbed the 50lb and hiked it over my shoulder. The weight was torturous and the pressure on my knees was indescribable, but I knew what the finish line would feel like so I broke through! It was amazing and the victory was so worth the pain!
BREAKTHROUGH COMES BY BREAKING THROUGH!
Break through is not just given to you! Nobody experiences breakthrough without putting the work in! In warfare a breakthrough is defined as an OFFENSIVE military assault that penetrates and carries beyond the defensive line. Something tells me that a breakthrough like that does not come without costing some lives!
Do you think your breakthrough is going to come without some blood, sweat, tears, and scuffs on your knees from prayer?
Do you think it's going to come without HARD WORK?
If you do then you will NEVER break through!
This is a battle! This is a race! Just like my half marathon and my Spartan, I know what the finish line feels like! Let me remind you….WE WIN!! WE WIN!!! He has won the war, we just have to fight the battles along the way! NOBODY else can do YOUR fighting!
It’s time to get your knuckles dirty! It’s time to pick up that heavy weight. It’s time to take on that mile 9 bridge! (I'll tell you about that some other time. It’s time to break through! Stop making excuses! Stop saying you are weak! Stop blaming anyone or anything else for your lack of breakthrough. It’s time! Dust yourself off! Put on your war paint! Tell the enemy the gloves are off!
2020 is NOT OVER!! 2020 has not been cancelled and neither has your breakthrough
…or mine for that matter!
Break through comes by BREAKING THROUGH and I’m taking my year back!
In the hoping, I will break through!
In the doubting, I will break through!
In the pain, I WILL BREAK THROUGH!
In the waiting, I will break through!