Take another step


“How long will you wait before you begin to take possession of the land that the LORD, the God of your ancestors, has given you?” Joshua 18:3
“What are you waiting for?” That was basically the question Joshua was asking. They knew what they had to do but were motionless, even when they had a promised a better place, a bountiful land. Stillness was their answer.

Oftentimes we know exactly what we need to do and just do nothing. There are many reasons for that, but the main one is fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of failure, fear of not having the skills, fear of fear itself. But when we are all by ourselves, we know what we need to do. We know that action is the only option, but we choose to stay put, we choose to do nothing. Probably it is because we are comfortable where we are in life right now and making a change is inconvenient. Or maybe fear has become our master. Can you imagine that? Being controlled by a thought that extrapolates and creates mental circumstances and events that in the majority of time never happen? Fear constricts perception, thinking, and motor processes, but faith and love promote action. That is why repeatedly we find God reassuring us and telling us not to fear. “Do not fear, for I am with you” and “perfect love drives out fear”.

You might have been drawn into a situation that most likely you did not create. Or be in a position today you drifted into because of your inaction. Regardless of what or why you are where you are today, you need to move. The best way to break a series of bad decisions is, you guessed it, make one good decision. It sounds simplistic and obvious but when you are immersed in a streak of constant inaction, thinking of making a change, even when it’s a small one, seems an unsurmountable task. One act, ons step, that is what it takes.

Here are some suggestions of how to start making changes that I found helpful:

  • Rest: Yes, it sounds like an oxymoron, but when you are well rested your body and your mind are renewed, you think better you’re more productive, alert and more prone to move on.
  • Eat well: Take control of your diet and make small changes everyday. Drink water before eating, it will make you feel more full and therefore consume less. Ask for help to make a balanced diet and don’t be hard on yourself.
  • Exercise: Even a small walk around your neighborhood will make you feel better and alert.
  • Analyze who are your influencers: “The people that you listen to, are the preview of the future you.” Jeff Henderson. When we consider the lives of those we regard and seek their advise, we should notice the result of their lives in the area we are seeking advise on. Are they modeling well? If I am asking financial advise, are they an example to follow? In relationships? In work? If not, change your sphere.
  • Ask for help: If you cannot make changes on your own, seek advise of others. Look for people that have different ideas than yours and pick their minds. Sometimes one word or one phrase is all that you need to start moving.

Storms in life and menacing waters may be ahead of you, that’s life. But you are not a quitter, you are courageous and you embrace the future with hope. Every obstacle is just a building block for your character. As Franklin D. Roosevelt said, “A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor”, if you never quit and you take that first step, you will be on you way to your promised land. Steven Curtis Chapman described this beautifully in his song “Take Another Step”. There’s a paragraph that says:

If there’s an ocean in front of you

You know what you’ve gotta do

Take another step and another step

Maybe He’ll turn the water into land

And maybe He’ll take your hand and say

Let’s take a walk on the waves

Will you trust Me either way

And take another step

Take another step

So you know what needs to be done. What are you waiting for? Take another step.

“BREATHE expectantly, LIVE confidently and MOVE Boldly”

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© Copyright Danny Maldonado, 2014
Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

A view from the bottom


When life hits us with a storm of problems, the first thing that usually gets impaired is our view. We usually only see the immediate, the here and now, the critical issue that needs attention. Problems are all we see; it is in most cases our first reaction. We get immersed in the situation and our view becomes focused on that particular item. Health, finances, relationships, whatever it is that is hitting close to home, takes center stage and it seems to come to us with a vengeance. We look around and the only thing we see is a hopeless bottom.

Isn’t it curious that we can one day be at the top of our game and seem that we can conquer the world and then suddenly, we are thrown to our knees begging for help because we can’t see a way to even conquer ourselves? Life is hard. For some, it’s harder than most and we cannot understand why, or even make sense of it many times. It is in these moments where an uninvited guest usually knocks at our door and without hesitation strolls in. Regret mines our mind and accuses us continually. “Why did you say that?” or “Why did you do that? If you hadn’t gone there, or If you hadn’t bought that everything would have been different.” That list can go on and on. Regret points us even further down to the bottom, whispering to us that this is a permanent place for us and that we blew it.

But the bottom even as hard as it might be, has another vantage point, UP. You see, being at the bottom is sometimes a good place to be to look from. Everything looks different, you see life from a different perspective. You appreciate life in a deeper more profound way. We can decide to continue to roam and resign ourselves to live in the low places, or we can scout the bottom for a step to move up. King David penned it best in Psalm 121; I lift up my eyes to the mountains—where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.” A beautiful view from the bottom.

The bottom is a reminder for us to look up. To raise our voices and focus our view to higher, greater, bigger places. I know that the feeling at the bottom is sometimes a constant angst, despair. A place of loneliness and shame. But it also can be if you decide, a place of hope and new vision. When our inner eyes look up, our outer circumstances will follow suit. A place of despair can become a place of hope. A place of tears can become a place of joy. A place of sickness can become a place of healing. A place at the bottom can become a place to look up.

A place at the bottom can be a vantage point. A place to look up to our Heavenly father, that in the midst of your current circumstances is waiting for you to look to him. You might not know your next step, and even thinking of taking one is frighting because you fear it will make your stay at the bottom permanent. But the great thing to remember is that He created the heavens and the earth and knows and created every path imaginable on your trek up the mountain. And if there is none, he will make one.

No more tears, no more regrets. Lift your eyes towards the mountains and take the next step. Your Heavenly father awaits. And you have the best view right now, a view from the bottom.

“BREATHE expectantly, LIVE confidently and MOVE Boldly”

Want this inspiration of coffee by email every morning? Enter your e-mail to subscribe at the top right of this page under the box for “Subscribe”. Like this writing and want share it? Just add your comment below on “Leave a Reply” or share it on Facebook, Twitter, or by email using any of the buttons next to “Share this:”

© Copyright Danny Maldonado, 2014
Scripture quotations are taken from The Holy Bible: Today’s New International Version. 2005. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.