My husband and I have a goddaughter, Eden. We had the pleasure of attending an African dance summer camp recital for her that she had been participating in most of the summer. Of the participating youth, Eden was probably the youngest.
What was so exciting about this recital was not knowing what to expect. We did not know how Eden was going to perform. She had not shown her mom any of the dances, so her mom did not know whether she really knew the dances. We were a little bit apprehensive because, unfortunately, Eden had to miss six weeks of the camp because of her mom's travel schedule. If you could see the complexity of the dances, you would understand why missing six weeks was a big deal. This could have turned out one of two ways.
It could have gone the way it actually went...Eden did a fantastic job! If memory serves me correctly, she was in three of the dances, and she knew the moves perfectly. And...she has rhythm! Okay, let me say that's a good thing because all the years we were dancing around in my living room, that was not evident!
The second way it could have turned out was Eden could have had the mindset of "You know what, I've been absent most of the summer. I haven't been there with my friends. I don't know all the dances and I haven't had the benefit of learning all the other stuff. I can't catch up." She could have had a terrible attitude, but she chose to respond differently. She knew what she had to do before leaving, and when she got back, she put in the work. She learned the dances and she was able to perform. She got out there and knocked it out of the park!
Now, as adults, this is where the lesson comes in because, too often, we opt for option number two. We get caught up in the idea that we're behind. We haven't had as much training as the next person doing what we want to do. The doubts creep in. "I can't catch up. I'm getting too old." When I was 39 years old, just a few weeks from 40, I remember heading to my car and feeling this overwhelming sense of "running out of time." All I could think was "I'm about to be 40 years old, and I have not done nearly all the things that I thought I would have done by this age. I'm not going to be able to do it." I was in such a mental state at that moment, you would have thought I was going to die tomorrow.
Well, that did not happen. I am still here!
When those thoughts come, here is what we have to understand. God is a restorer of time, and if we have the desire, God will open up those doors that we thought were closed. When those feelings arise, we have to do what Eden did. She understood the reality, even at age 5. After missing six weeks, she was going to have to play catch-up. She was going to have to put in the necessary work.
That's my challenge to you. What are you willing to do to get out of the negative mindset of "I don't have enough. I'm behind. I'm getting too old?" We have to shift that mindset and start to focus on "What is it going to take? What do I need to do to ensure that when the time comes to perform, I am able to deliver?"