My favorite leadership expert is John C. Maxwell. In his book, “Failing Forward,” he says that in order to move forward you have twenty-four hours to get over successes and failures. I have experienced getting stuck in the successes and failures. I also understand it’s time to get over the successes and failures and move forward into what is next for me.
In 2002 I ran the Motorola Marathon in Austin, TX. It was one of the most challenging things I have ever done in my life. The six month training in order to get to the starting line was an experience in pushing through physically and mentally. In 2003, I decided to participate in the Danskin Triathlon. I had to get over the success of the marathon in order to train for the triathlon and have another goal to challenge me. That wasn’t an easy thing. I like success. I like having the pictures and metal from the marathon on my office wall. I’m really not sure who doesn’t. I also realize that God is more concerned with my character then how I feel and my list of successes and failures. I’m not always going to “feel” successful, but I am loved and accepted by God. Knowing that gives me confidence to get over successes and failures and move on to the next thing in life. Romans 8:35-39, “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
When I say “get over it,” I mean get over you; the past hurts, disappointments, successes, failures, and relationships (personal, ministry, business). God has so much more for you then to be stuck in an emotional spiral over people and circumstances you have no control over. You have control over your emotions and the things you choose to expend your emotional energy on. In my own life, in order for me to get over some things, I’ve chosen to be vulnerable: going to a professional counselor to sort out my thoughts and feelings, confronting and being confronted by individuals I’ve hurt their feelings or they’ve hurt mine, being honest and raw with my emotions when spending time with God, and having great girlfriends that I can confide in and truly be myself (the good, bad, and ugly). I encourage you to be self aware about your emotions, but also not to get stuck in them.
I had a one on one meeting with my personal trainer, Kratai Albert. It included being weighed and measured for the next season of her Power of Six (www.kratai.net) fitness program. I didn’t meet the goals I wanted to in the past three month session. I wasn’t focused on the physical (exercise and nutrition) part of me. Instead of being stuck in the last session, I made a choice to move on to the session that starts on Monday. I set new goals and have a new plan of action. I also have someone to support, encourage, and keep me accountable. It’s important and strategic for me to have Kratai to be my cheerleader, coach, and tell me the truth. I want something different, so I have to do something different.
An important thing that I have learned to get over is past relationships. It’s crucial to get over past relationships in order to be open to the opportunities set before you for possible new ones. A couple of years ago, I was in a relationship with a man that was also in ministry at the same church I am on staff at, Shoreline Church. We served side by side in one another’s ministry before and during our relationship. When our relationship ended, it really stretched my emotional awareness and changed the dynamic of our ministry partnership. I knew that neither of us was going anywhere. I had to learn to get over it quickly in order to continue to do what God wanted me to do and still have interactions with an ex-boyfriend/ministry partner. Believe me, it was easier said than done. Today, I am in an incredible relationship with a man that attends the same church as me. I also have a casual friendship with the ex-boyfriend/ministry partner. God’s healing and restoration is real.
I have decided to start every day fresh with a clean perspective in every area of my life that includes an attitude of mercy toward myself. Lamentations 3:22-23, “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his Compassion never fails. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”
Stacy McVane is the Executive Director of Lift Student Ministries at Shoreline Church, Austin, TX. You can follow her on Twitter HERE and friend her on Facebook HERE. Visit her website at www.StacyMcVane.com.