This weekend I enjoyed the second of my back-to-back week of retreats, with this one being focused on writing. I belong to Word Weavers of Orlando, a local critique chapter of the organization, and each year we get away for a weekend of great instruction and critique time. While the time away challenged and encouraged me, I was reminded mostly of how important it is to give my all in my writing career.
Rachel Hauck was our keynote speaker and something she said gripped me. If we want to succeed, we must not only work hard, but MUCH harder than everyone else. Sounds obvious, right? And yet, what she said grabbed hold of me this weekend and has stuck with me. Yes, a little bit of talent is needed. And we must be willing to take advantage of the opportunities that come our way. But in the end, most people who see their dreams come true work much harder than others to get there.
I heard a sports story about the Detroit Tigers closer, Phil Coke, the other day. He was pitching in college and getting hammered each outing. He called his dad and said he was coming home because it wasn’t fun anymore. His father said, “Okay son, come on home. No one will be upset or disappointed in you. But consider this. You were so close to reaching your dream. If you give up now, everyone else will be okay with it, but you’ll never know if you could have made it.”
I don’t want to ever look back on my life with regret because I didn’t give it my all. That works for my family, my ministry, and my writing. If I give it my all and come up short, that’s God’s deal. He may have had other purposes in mind. But if I don’t give it my all, I’ll never know.
So, how about you? Are you giving it your all? Just do it!