I read a novel last week that told the story of three people – two of them betrayed the third. Even after the betrayal, they continued in each other’s lives for the next fifteen years. Silence, distrust, anger and hate dominated their lives. When one of them dies at the end, the remaining two finally look at each other and realize that they have wasted the best years of their lives and that their anger and distrust robbed them of the chance for happiness for many years.
Since I finished that novel, I’ve wondered what in my life is holding me back? Whether consciously, as in the novel, or subconsciously, we all have things that are holding us back from being the person that you want to be. Maybe we are looking at the wrongs that some have done to us, like the betrayed woman in my novel. But consider what we’re taught about holding grudges: “And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.” Mark 11:25.
Maybe we are having a hard time forgiving ourselves, as the two betrayers did in my novel. Thousands of years ago, the prophet Isaiah reminded us that we are forgiven: “I, even I, am the one who wipes out your transgressions for My own sake, And I will not remember your sins.” Isaiah 43:25. Forgiving yourself is often harder than forgiving others but it is so much more important. Change must begin with forgiving yourself for mistakes you made in the past.
There are many more things that can hold us back…impatience, fear, self-doubt, procrastination, and just plain laziness to name a few. Think about what you want to do and come up with a plan. If you really want to change, that plan may include taking massive action. Make the plan. Then take the first step in implementing that plan. All great change in life begins with a single step.
Christy Crow is an attorney with Jinks, Crow & Dickson, P.C.