Patience

Another twist in the story this week. My son has decided to come home. He’s still playing tennis, but he sees his future going somewhere else. He realizes his dream to play tennis has been rooted in his heart since he was much younger, but he’s not sure that his future is set in just that game. He made this decision pretty much in half a day, after months of agonizing over whether he should play tennis or not. I am amazed.

I wonder if he even sees what I see from the outside. I’ve tried to tell him for years that God would direct him, but not to count on it happening immediately and not to expect it to be exactly what he wants. That God directs us in his own time and we have to be patient to wait for it and then act on it when He does move in our lives.

My son was tormented. One day he would have a great day and be ready to challenge himself more the next day. When the next day came, he would be tired and have a poor attitude, so he would play poorly and he would go home ready to quit everything and torture himself thinking about what he would do with his life. I can only imagine how he must have felt. Sick with worry; about disappointing his parents, about not being able to provide a living for himself and most of all, about what everyone else will think.

I know that’s a hard thing to deal with, worrying about what others think about you. Believe me, just because you know in your heart that what other people think about you doesn’t mean they are right or that they even know who you really are, you still are affected by what other people think about you. It’s hard to shrug it off when they don’t admire you but rather they condemn you for your poor decision making, or poor lifestyle. You know what it feels like to be judged and so you try your hardest to keep that from happening. Sometimes that judgment can be used for motivation. Not to prove everyone wrong, but to point you in the direction of helping other people who may be going through what you have gone through yourself.

That brings me back to the decision my son made yesterday. I have no doubt he still wants to play tennis desperately, but he feels like he is forcing the issue. If he can remember what it was like to just play because it was fun, then he can do it all. There is no need to put pressure on an activity that’s meant for enjoyment. Yes, I’ve been trying to tell him that for years, too, but as a parent, I’m used to not being heard.

What he’s decided to do is to go to school and learn about nutrition. so he can guide others to living healthy, not mediocre. He’s learned what nutrition has done for him, through his injuries and recoveries, and now with the intense training he’s had over the last month, how it impacts his energy, stamina and longevity. He’s ready to learn more about how to apply the right nutrients at the right time to keep athletes going at their best while minimizing strain and stress on the body. It wouldn’t surprise me if he took it further and learned how nutrition can combat disease without having to rely on pharmaceuticals.

He sounds excited about his decision and I know it’s been on his mind for at least two years to try to help others in this type of way. It’s amazing to see God opening doors just at the right time and to see how He holds doors open for you and you don’t realize they were waiting for you until you decide to walk through them. I’ve always heard that you need to to obey God quickly or else He will find someone else to do the job, but this is one time when I believe God has had lots of patience with someone to help them see His intentions.

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