One step at a time

Posted By: Dieuner Joseph | Friday, September 20, 2019

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Galatians 6:9

One of my favorite sayings is “the journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” This saying originated from a famous Chinese proverb found in chapter 64 of the Tao Te Ching credited to Laozi (although it is also erroneously credited to Confucius). The original saying in Chinese is “A journey of a thousand Chinese miles starts beneath one’s feet.”

Spiritual transformation and personal improvement do not occur all of a sudden for most people. The caterpillar does not become a butterfly instantaneously. It takes between 28 to 38 days for that metamorphosis process to be completed.

Life is a journey of a thousand miles. We should rejoice for every positive step we take. Let us, therefore, not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. If you want to quit smoking, gradually reduce the number of cigarettes you smoke every day until you quit the habit. The same principle is applicable to those who want to stop drinking alcohol.

On a spiritual level, those who want to become more fluent in the language of prayer should start by praying five minutes per day. Then gradually increase that amount until they become prayer warriors. Do not get frustrated if you cannot pray like a more mature Christian. Those who want to become more compassionate and benevolent to others should start with one act of random kindness per day. Then gradually increase that until they can be considered a philanthropist.

To those who are struggling to tithe, start by giving two percent, then gradually increase that amount until you become comfortable to give ten percent. A failed marriage can be saved with one kind word per day from each of the partner. If you want to start a career in a field that captures your passion, start with an entry-level position, then work your way up.

My point is that you don’t have to have it all figured out. You don’t have to start at the top. The journey to becoming a friendly person starts with one smile. If you want to become a good cook, start with a simple meal. Eventually, you will be in the position to prepare the Thanksgiving dinner for all your family members and friends.

The worst thing we can do is to become weary as we are learning a new skill or developing new talent. The most expensive wines take decades to ferment. Excellence cannot be rushed. We have to give ourselves, and others grace to fail as they try to achieve greatness.

Do not be overly critical and condescending to a child that is struggling academically. Spend the time and resources (if available) to help that child regain his or her confidence one tutoring session at a time. One of the reasons God gave us the Bible is so that we can grow into righteousness. We are not born righteous. It takes a lifetime of learning and praying to grow into it. That is why we are told in Galatians 6:1, “Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently.”

Let us not forget what Paul told the saints in the church in Philippi, “being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” God will sustain us in our journey of a thousand miles until we transition to glory. So wherever you are in your journey, do not become weary.

If you have stumbled, get yourself right back up. Whatever mistakes you’ve made has already been forgiving and forgotten by your father in heaven through Jesus Christ, our redeemer. Don’t become a prisoner of your past. Keep moving forward. For a journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.

Prayer- Blessed Lord, in your mercy and grace, give us the courage to keep moving forward in our Christian journey so we can finish the race that is set before us until we reach our heavenly home.

About The Author

Rev. Dieuner Joseph is a dynamic leader, disciple Maker, Writer, Talk Show host, and Spiritual counselor. Reverend Joseph is the founder of the Imani Temple Baptist Church and the Disciple Maker Ministry. He is a skilled Bible teacher who carefully and responsibly exegete the Scriptures to make them relevant to today’s readers. Through his Blog and weekly Christian magazine- The Wednesday Word- he seeks to provide Bible based instructions for dealing with the socio-political issues of today.

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