As I sit tonight in front of this computer, I have to admit that I am feeling a wave of frustration sweeping over my mind as I check my results for the past few weeks. Frustration is a normal emotion experienced by all would be champions. Greats like Babe Ruth, would often fall into a slump, and experience a moment of frustration, only to emerge from the slump with a bang. Others fall deep into the frustration ditch never to emerge again. What’s the difference? Why do some people explode out of turmoil and others shrink into insignificance under the pressure to perform? Whether it be on the job, in our marriages, or building our businesses, were are guaranteed to experience the burdens of crippling frustration.
For me it is like sitting on a ticking bomb that I know is going to explode someday, and my job is to build a shelter against that impending doomsday. I build and build only to see it crumble as the ticking gets louder and louder. I scramble to make up lost time, and in my efforts I get lazy or sloppy and my shelter topples once again. Tick… tick… tick. The days seem shorter, and the failures seem to build into a big pit that lands squarely in my stomach on days like today. Frustration mounts, and I sometimes start to question my need for the shelter. I start to wonder if I am building the right type. I start to question my plan and the instructions… everything seems foggy. A few days like this can become very disheartening, and I find myself so focused on building that I forget to use the tools necessary to build. I forget that I have a hammer, so I pound the nails with my fists. (which hurts) I forget that I have a saw, so I break the boards over my leg. (so they never quite fit) I do not even read the instructions because I kind of know how to do this (NOT!) Each failure seems to mount, and my once confident shoulders can start to sag.
If you are experiencing this type of frustration, I welcome you to team leadership! Frustration only occurs when you have a goal, and you hear the ticking of the bomb as you lay awake at night. Only leaders get frustrated, because only leaders measure results and only leaders stay while others quit when it gets tough. If you are not frustrated, then you are not trying very hard for excellence. My Pastor made the statement Sunday that “Burdens Birth Blessings!” Only when it is darkest can we see the stars. We cannot have sweet victory without the agony of defeat. We cannot have a monumental win without a try very hard! Only through our trials can we achieve true success. Only the hot flames of our burdens can remove selfishness, pride, and bad attitudes. Those hot flames can cure what prohibits our leadership development. Right on the other side of that refining process are our dreams and goals, and only leaders will endure the process long enough to experience those victories. Just as a delivering mother experiences indescribable birth pains, only to forget those pains when she see her darling baby, so shall you and I forget all of our burdens once we experience the realization of our dreams.
When it seems like you can’t catch a break, and you are at the end of your rope, I want each of you to tie a knot in that rope and hang on. Fight just one more day for your dreams. Each day brings another opportunity to build your shelter,and God expects that we fight the good fight. If you fall down, make sure you fall on your back, because if you can look up, you can get up! Re-visit your dreams, use your tools to build properly, and walk by faith and not by sight. Those who stay will be champions, and if you are experiencing burdens, then get ready becasue your delivery day is approaching if you keep pushing! Those are birth pains you are feeling, so be encouraged!