I don’t know where to start sometimes. Especially when it comes to writing. I give a lot of excuses for why I can’t write. I’m in the middle of Gilmore Girls. I just need a 15-minute nap. I can’t find my lucky pen.
But it’s not just with writing. I don’t know where to start when it comes to purging my bad habits. For example, I’m a migraine sufferer and all too often, I’m stricken to bed with the pain. Sometimes they’re unpredictable, but I know better. I know I’m not supposed to stress myself out and that I’m supposed to exercise regularly and spend some time doing yoga. I’m supposed to drink a lot of water and eat well, but the thing is, some mornings, I’m too tired to do yoga. I’d rather have lemonade than a glass of water.
So maybe it’s not that I don’t know where to start, it’s that I don’t want to start because I’d have to do hard things. I’ve had people tell me that they can’t stop their bad habits because they can’t find another stress reliever. They don’t sing anymore because their voice is shot. They can’t take up running because they blew out their knee a few years ago. They can’t draw. They can’t write. They can’t go back to church. They can’t pray. They can’t.
And so they go back to the dark places, and so they wake up in the morning feeling guilty and rubbing their eyes from the ache of the night before. I know the feeling. I give the excuses too. Maybe you’re trying to get rid of your own migraines, those things that keep you up at night, those things that leave you crying, and maybe you’re worried like me.
Sometimes I worry that my faith isn’t enough and that even if I start trying, I’ll just fall on my face again. There’s a story in Mark that shakes me from that fear though. Jesus had been preaching in Capernaum to a packed crowd. Four men carry a paralyzed man to the house where Jesus was at, open up the roof and lower the man on the mat to Jesus. Jesus heals and forgives the man.
I want that kind of faith. I want to be able to go through the roof to be forgiven by Jesus. I want to do anything I can to get there.
There are a million excuses that keep me from having the faith to start, but I can’t stay where I am. If you’re afraid to start on your path away from your monsters, you’re not alone in that fear. The key is to stop living in the bottom of a hole and start doing something different. This isn’t a motivational speech. This isn’t a cat clinging to a rope, encouraging you to hang on. This is your kickstart.
That man on the mat could have chosen to stay home that day, but he made a decision to do everything he could to get the healing he needed.
Don’t stay home today. Start.