My heart was pounding, small sweat patches were forming around my forehead, the waves were threatening my safety, and I was convinced it was the end.
Josh recently bought us kayaks for our six-month wedding anniversary. Yes, I said six months. When you’re just getting started, everything is a milestone.
After a few practice rides in the calm bay water behind our house, we decided to venture down to where the bay meets the ocean.
We made it to the end of the jetties without much trouble. We watched the seals do nothing, marveled at the beauty of the endless ocean, dodged catamarans, and then started heading back in our tiny manual sea boats. As we began the journey home, the strain in my arms alerted me that we were going upstream.
I began paddling relentlessly, my biceps started burning, the waves seemed to be getting bigger, and I felt like the kayak was drifting toward the ocean regardless of my efforts.
In unfiltered panic I yelled to Josh, “I am getting sucked out to sea!” He calmly replied, “I promise we are taking ground even if it doesn’t feel like it. Look back at how far we have come.”
Today my thought is simple: stay calm and keep paddling. You are taking ground even if it doesn’t feel like it.
Just because it feels hard, doesn’t mean you aren’t going anywhere. God just might be building in you the strength you need so that He can take you where you don’t yet know that you are going. But He does. And the adventure will be worth it.
Don’t let the way the season is making you feel impact the ground you are truly taking. Sometimes the illusion that we are getting sucked backwards is actually the indicator that we are moving forward.
If there are adventures and purposes that God has planted in your heart, you will inevitably find yourself swimming upstream repeatedly. The greatest adventures God will ask you to go on are the adventures that will require the most work. But with every stroke of your oar, God will take you deeper into abundance. Further into fulfilling your fierce potential on this side of eternity.
We must decide now, that we will not give up later. If we don’t prepare our hearts now, the weight of the work will threaten our destiny later. I am more convinced than ever that God needs His people to have a determined conviction for the things He is calling us to accomplish for His Kingdom.
What will give us the zeal to keep moving forward when the waves rise up and the rush of the revelation dies? We must build foundations beneath our motivations. Nobody ever went down an unpaved path without a machete. Just the same, we cannot expect to take new ground without our weapons. Do not wait until you need them to try to get them.
It takes work and commitment to cultivate endurance on our journey. Galatians 5:25 speaks about the importance of staying in step with the spirit through the fruits of the spirit. This fruit is our weapon that will cut down the offense, pride, envy and complacency that will lay silently on the path before us.
When you choose to go beyond what is comfortable, and say yes to the great God adventures, there will be days when we are tempted to let the resistance and the struggle take us out. The moments that our arms start to burn and we feel like we are being pulled backwards are the moments that it is more important than ever to push forward. You will always find Heaven granted authority and fresh ground taken on the other side of a victorious battle.
Never underestimate the ground that God is giving you in the heavenly when you feel like you are moving backwards in the natural.
Today, take a deep breath, look heavenward, and allow the King to remind you how far you have come and where you are going. The ground you will take and the difference you will make are worth every moment that you did not let go. At the end you will look back and realize that the adventure was worth it all.
Kayla is a Texas native, newlywed living in California. She started working at A21 in their Sydney office four years ago. She loves anything outdoors and is determined about the fight against human trafficking. Connect with her on her blog.