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04 September 2018
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A step in the right direction

Imagine yourself standing at the foot of a very tall ladder. The top of the ladder represents your hopes, dreams and goals for the future. The bottom of the ladder represents the present and in the middle of the ladder there's one step.

Only one step that will take you from who you are today to who and what you want to be tomorrow. But the gap between the top and bottom is too wide. Getting your foot onto the middle step is almost impossible! But it's all or nothing you tell yourself, preparing yourself mentally for the difficult task. But no matter how hard you try, you just can’t reach it. And then a sense of failure starts to rear its ugly head.

This is the picture of many people's lives. They know what they want to achieve in life, but they want to reach their goals in one go! They want to change bad habits and behaviour - which took years to learn - in less than a day. They psych themselves up for the challenge of becoming a new person, but as soon as they step on that ladder a war starts raging within them.

One part of their brain is convinced that they will make it to the top, and the other part tells them just to give up. Popular lines like: "Who are you to change your life?" "You'll never make it" and "You're a loser" creep into the person’s mind. Now imagine that same ladder with 20 or 30 steps between the bottom and the top. Won't that make the trip to the top - your goals, dreams and plans for the future – so much easier? Change is possible, but it takes time.

If you push yourself to change 1% a month, you can change 1% a week, 1% a day and very soon you’ll discover that you can change 1% an hour. Little by little you'll move up the ladder and reach your target. No matter what it is you’re trying to achieve: whether it is to be a better husband or wife, or to lose weight or to start your own business, it all starts with one step. And you will soon notice that the higher you climb towards the top, the smaller your problems will become. "I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus." (Philippians 3:14)

But remember, there are two sides to every ladder. One side will lead you to the top, using your faith as fuel to spur you on and the other side leads you down - when fears, doubts and negativity start weighing you down. On the off chance that things don't go the way you planned or expected, you need to know the difference between being knocked down and knocked out. A person who is knocked out has no hope of ever getting back onto that ladder again. He looks at the top as an impossible dream.

There's only one person who finds pleasure in a knocked-out person's defeat – satan. The person who realises that he has been knocked down, simply stands up, dusts himself off and starts climbing the ladder again - one step at a time. "Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind..." (Romans 12:2) You have the power to change your life, one step at a time. Just make up your mind and take one step closer to a brand-new life.

God bless you all

Marcelo Pires

mp@mpires.org

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