Faith

Obstacles are nothing but Opportunities

Let’s be real here.

We’ve all faced obstacles! Every single one of us. Some far more than others for sure. None of us are exempt from facing difficulties. Not a one.

How we choose to handle the obstacles is what makes all the difference in our world. Literally!

Your world to be exact.

We always have a choice whether we want to tackle the obstacle at hand or let it stand between us and our future. It’s been said that, if you find a path with no obstacles, it probably doesn’t lead to anywhere…

I have found that to be true.

In hindsight, I know that the obstacles I even faced over the years have led me to unfailingly arrive at the exact place that I’m supposed to be.

Truth is, I’ve found my purpose and my passion through the obstacles I’ve encountered along the way. So can you!

Little did I know that those very obstacles were gifts in disguise. Obstacles may look like failures but I want to challenge you in your thinking for just a minute if I may.

Just bear with me while I share a little backstory…

I’ll never forget the words or the moment that my first husband shared what he loved about “me”…

Sitting around a warm campfire, with all these other “lovey dovey” young couples, singing Kumbaya kind of songs, we were all asked a rather personal yet provoking question about what we loved about our spouses and would we be willing to share…

I, being the hopeless romantic that I was, was ready to hear something poetically romantic. I lovingly gazed at him, heart pounding, waiting for his answer. Until he answered that is. To say that I was rather embarrassed and quite perplexed by his unemotional answer was an understatement. Everyone else’s romantic lullaby answers faded into the background as his words reverberated in my head like a clanging symbol. I remember thinking, surely he’s going to say something more. Yeah…Nope!

However his words DID ring true. Not the words I longed to hear, but nonetheless, true. He said, ” I love Cheryl’s perseverance and persistence !” WTW …You’ve got to be kidding me I thought to myself at that moment. That’s it?!?! I probably turned as red as the embers in our slowly dying fire…pardon the pun!

What I didn’t realize however was how true of a statement that was. Until he left a year later. He loved my perseverance???? My determination? That means he loved my steadfastness in doing something despite difficulties or delay in achieving success…

Helllooooo…..maybe he was trying to tell me something even then. I’ll never know. But what I do know is this. You never really know what you’re made of until you’re pushed against a wall.

The fact is this.It’s in the pushing and pressing into the wall that you find your true strengths.

I found out for myself exactly how to persevere through the worst of nightmares .You now, the kind you’re sure you’re going to wake up from and everything is as it should be. Well, that didn’t happen BUT what happened was this.

I became even more persistent, more determined. I had to in order to survive being totally abandoned with three precious babies. Suddenly. I mean very suddenly, my knight in shining armor rode off into the night with a very young filly, 19 years old to be exact, without me and our three children. Literally, gone into the night and across country. Again, WTW…

I had no other choice but to persevere through the devastation of it all.

Honestly, I have to thank my parents, though they were extremely strict even militant at times, for demanding, not asking, that we do finish every task at hand AND with excellence no matter what. That’s where persistence and perseverance paid off big time. It all started when I was quite young.

Even though it wasn’t the path I would haven chosen, there was no doubt in my mind that I had to turn these unforeseen “obstacles” into opportunities. Both for me and my children. The initial obstacle himself had vanished into the night but the road was now paved with boulders bigger than me. I knew my children deserved so much more than being abandoned by their biological dad. That was a given. I couldn’t fill that gaping void that he had left behind, though I tried. That broke my heart more than anything else. There had to be a way to make this better. There had to…

There is always a way…

What I could do was fill those empty spaces with opportunities. Obviously, they wouldnt take the place of having their Dad, but it did help to fill the void to some degree.I had to find a way around the inmsurmountable obstacles. That’s where perseverance takes over. Did I have the funds to do so? Absolutely not. Did I have the exra free time? No way…

But I had the in between time…AND I was determined!

When you’re in the battle for your life or lives of your little ones, you fight and you find a way! After all,we do serve the Way Maker ,in a big way!

So I hit the pavement. Literally. I knocked on every door, made a bazillion phone calls and chased every opportunity that would be of interest to my children! I became THAT Mom. Being told NO, was not an option. It was not a viable answer. I was determined to provide a way for them even though there seemd to be no way possible. That’s what God always does for us. He ALWAYS makes a way. ALWAYS!

With His guidance, my perseverance and persistence,I found that there is always a way through or around the obstacles! I sought out every scholarship I could possibly find for soccer, piano, gymnastice, ballet,dance and private Christian education, etc. Whatever it took, I was willing to do. At first,I was denied scholarship or entrance into private Christian school for two years because I was “divorced”. That was a bit of an obstacle back in the 80’s…That was a tough one to hear but it didnt stop me. Denied but not defeated. I kept knocking…I was persistant to say the least! You have to be if you really want something. I had my heart set on this particular school as I felt it would provide a Christian covering for my children. Two years later, I marched in and met with the board of that school again. I was then granted a generous scholarship for all three children. They were each granted full scholarships to the YMCA, Crealde Art school and so much more. I even traded doing a woman’s laundry so my children could take piano lessons. If you want something bad enough, you will find a way. If not, you’ll find an excuse.

There is truth in the old saying, “Where there is a will, there is a way!” Always!

The greater your obstacle, the more glory there is in overcoming it! I’m not saying it was easy though. Far from it! My driving force were my children. I knew I couldn’t let them down. I also knew I couldn’t do this by myself. As I leaned into my Rock and trusted Him to pave the way, the boulders that seemed to be impossible to get around gave way to numerous possibilities and opportunities for my little family!

Remember,obstacles are nothing but opportunities! Know that there is, within you, something greater than any obstacle you’ve encountered.

You, my friend, are MORE than a CONQUEROR IN CHRIST JESUS! (Rom.8:37)

You were made for more than your obstacles! Now get out there and conquer!

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