I sat in McDonalds with a friend a few weeks ago.
She’s one of the gold ones. Her middle name is actually Gold, for real, so she’s true to her name.
I can’t remember what we were talking about, or why, but she made a comment about how she loves that I give things a go, even if it doesn’t continue or doesn’t work, that I just put it out there.
And while I always feel encouraged after talking to her, there was a tiny niggling little truth that I knew was in there: I rarely finish what I start.
Like that quilt that still needs the binding sewn on.
Or the knitted blanket that I only got two balls of yarn into, even after I envisioned it covering my entire king-sized bed.
Then there’s the matter of the 42 tiny crochet squares I made, ready for a blanket which needs about 65.
Telling myself my unfinished projects are simply blanket-related would be lying, because there are many that go beyond crafting something cosy. Like that time I told myself I would blog every day for a year but quit after a few months.
Or how I encouraged a friend that we would read the Bible cover to cover starting January 1st this year – she’s still going but I lost my way in March sometime.
Or the piano that sits gathering dust after only a handful of lessons.
The sad thing is that I find it very easy to list off the projects I began without finishing, but incredibly difficult to think of any I’ve completed that would be worthy of a mention.
This weakness in my character has me hesitant to begin anything for fear I’ll lose interest/find it too difficult/become too busy to carry it through to the end.
Today however, marks the end of an 8 week no sugar pledge.
People, I actually finished something!
It’s like a miracle, only I worked my butt off and used every ounce of self-control I could muster.
And the benefits of my sugar-quitting have been so worthwhile: I’ve had clearer skin, more energy, slept better, been more evenly tempered and even lost 4kgs.
But the absolute best thing about finishing eight week journey, is that my self-talk has shifted.
The self-talk that used to ask me why I bother starting new things, or dreaming about new projects or the mean thoughts that would tell me I’ve got no chance of finishing something significant have been replaced with this:
I can finish things, even when they’re hard.
I can start big things because I have the ability to muster up what I need each day to get me there in the end.
I know how to try and keep trying, even when I fail or miss a step.
Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything through the One who makes me who I am*.
Even if who I am is someone who happens to find it extremely difficult to… SQUIRREL…
*Philippians 4:13 MSG.