Another ironic post! You may be wondering from the title, “How can I be motivated by my limits? Why would I want to spend five minutes reading this?!” Good question. Maybe my answer will suffice.
I usually go to the city’s YMCA basketball gym once a week and play some pick-up basketball, hoping to connect with some kids and get my legs moving. I haven’t played yet this month. You may realize where this is going…
Yesterday at the Y, a 17-year-old, 6′4″ young man comes to me with a smile after watching me make some shots and asks, “1 on 1?” I thought for a moment about how I hadn’t stretched or played in a while, but decided to deny my limitations and try to challenge this kid. Well, I did, but since then I’ve had this major tightness in my back!
It reminds me of this hilarious yet accurate warning I saw posted in a local high school’s weight room (picture below). “If you are too weak to use the weights properly, don’t use them!” We often try to do what we’re not ready to do, maybe for the temporary moment of thrill or excitement or pride with not so good after effects.
I believe there are reasons why there are many things we are not made or ready to do. First of all, it shows us we are often not in control and aren’t meant to be. It gives us an awareness of God in our lives. Second, it allows us to focus on the strengths that have been given to us and to give what we’ve already received. Another thought: It motivates us to do what we can do now to get to where we want to be. These three reasons alone invite us to befriend those limitations and let them go, for now.
I don’t know about you, but I find this difficult to live into. I need constant help from trusted friends to remind me of this and patience to let this shift in mindset and life sink in for all areas of my life, not just pick-up basketball!
A takeaway: What’s one thing each of us can focus on giving that’s already been given and one thing that is a limitation that we need to let go of forcing for now?
Give what has been received and befriend what’s not yet there.