There was a day in my life that I almost gave up. I wanted to quit my job, I wanted to leave our home and live elsewhere, I wanted to spend everything I saved up, I wanted to quit my relationship with my friends and be isolated for three reasons:

  1. I felt like being betrayed because my co-workers whom I have served talked maliciously behind me.
  2. I didn't get the promotion that my manager promised to me even I received a higher rating than anyone else but one of my colleagues was able to get it.
  3. I am broken-hearted.

And all of them happened within the same year! Don't get me wrong about here, I have already moved on from these things, I am only pleased to share it with you to serve as an inspiration.

How does it feel when you didn't get what you want to achieve? For me it's awful! I spent two years investing all my life to my job, it was the time when I don't have time to go to church because I have to work during weekends! You know what it hurts? There was no promotion.

Another thing was, I felt some of my colleagues started to distance themselves from me. I'm clueless. Did I say anything that hurt them? Or I am too aggressive towards work? Or maybe I am too competitive? Oh well, I rest my case.

It was painful to see that I am not growing. I didn't get the promotion, I was dumped by the woman I'm courting that time, I couldn't ask for more! I wanted to quit my job and I wanted to isolate myself!

But here's one thing I realized:

My faith and character were being tested during those moments of my life.

I kept blaming Satan and his evil companions by attacking me, by blaming him that he was the one who gave me those difficulties in life when in fact God was the one who allowed it. Yes, you read it right. GOD allowed it.

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But why? God is good, why He will allow those things to happen in a life of a believer? It doesn't make sense to me at that time. But I remember Job, one of the most faithful man I know in the Bible. God prospered him but one day while Satan was in heaven, God said to him "Have you consider my servant Job? He is faithful to me.", Satan replied, "He is only faithful because your hand was upon him, you prospered him in everything and your angels are protecting him, lest you remove your hand and angels on him, he will curse you!". Then God said, "Alright I will, but don't touch him and take his life away".

Job suffered. Imagine in just a day, all his properties were burned in the fire. His daughters and sons died. All that he has once was gone. But despite that, Job did not sin against God.

The Test

Like Job, I wasn't aware that during those times, God allowed it to happen to test my faith and reveal what was really in my heart.

The moment I didn't get the promotion, God wanted for me to see how I am hungry for a position. God wanted me to learn to persevere and continue to serve without expecting a reward.

The moment I didn't get the "sweet yes" from the woman I am courting that time and how I was frustrated because I have plans of getting married by the age of 27, God wanted me to learn that His plans are better than my plans. He wanted me to see my flaws, He wanted me to overcome my jealousness. He wanted me to learn to be true to my words and promises, how is it to be the gentleman, a real man. I have learned to wait and let God do the rest because you can't get anything by hurrying up.

The moment I felt like that I am not growing, oh boy I was wrong, I didn't grow during the times when everything is good, I grow when I am struggling and I have overcome it.

The Life of a plant

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Somehow, the life of human and plants somehow related to each other. Have you tried to observe how plants and trees thrive?. When it was a seed, its sprouts are struggling underneath the ground. It wanted to see what's up there! The sprout might say, "I am so excited to see how it is beautiful up there! How the heat and light of the sun will touch my skin!, but I must first thrive and overcome this darkness and coldness that surrounds me".

But all of the trees that amazed me was the bamboo tree. Why? It was ugly and thin. It amazed me because it takes a long time for it to sprout. The process of growing a bamboo tree may take years but you know what? During the years that a bamboo seed is growing underneath the ground, the bamboo grows its roots first. After its roots were fully grown, it will sprout out of the ground and grow strongly and tremendously, bamboo trees won't be uprooted, no matter how the storm will be.

Our life is like the life of a plant. Our struggles is a sign that we are growing. The moment we feel that we are not growing because of the circumstances happening in our lives, it is the time our character is growing, the moment we are struggling, the is the time we are rooting, it is the time when God is molding us and preparing us for the next assignment He has for us.

Quoting from Michael John Bobak, "All progress takes place out of the comfort zone."

When you see your friends getting promoted, getting married, becoming successful, don't compete with them as you will be frustrated. Instead, compete with yourself. Just wait for your time to come and when that time comes, soar high! No one can stop you. Never regret a day in your life, because it has a purpose.

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The moment you are tempted to give up, remember why you started.

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I blog about my discoveries and learnings with personal development, blogging, writing, public speaking, and publishing. I am a Jesus follower. Each month, I send out a newsletter with free tips on those topics.

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