What’s Holding You Back?

“Then the L ord turned to him and said, “Go with the strength you have, and rescue Israel from the Midianites. I am sending you!”” (Judges 6:14 NLT)

God gave Gideon a mission: rescue Israel from the Midianites. The mission was very clear. The need was compelling. But Gideon did not believe that he could do it. He didn’t think that he was the right person and he knew he did not have the resources. Staying hidden in the winepress seemed like the best option.

Have you determined your mission? Is it clear and compelling? If the answer is yes, you must take action.

Gideon had reasons in his mind that were holding him back from taking action. His reasons were based on the realities of his life. Even though God Himself was speaking to him, Gideon could not see beyond his present circumstances.

What’s holding you back? Let me suggest a few reasons from Gideon’s story that you might relate to:

*Fear of failure
*Fear of people
*Lack of resources
*Low self-esteem

But there is another possible reason. It’s the reason that kept me from writing a book for the longest time. Here it is:

I was unprepared to sustain success.


Over a year ago, I read choreographer Twyla Tharp’s book entitled “The Creative Habit.” I highly recommend her book to you. In it, she suggests that being successful in your life mission is more about establishing and maintaining personal disciplines than about resources and DNA. The theme of her book is be prepared to succeed in your calling by creating a daily routine that supports its success.


Ms. Tharp has a daily routine of exercise, work, and rest that she has not deviated from throughout her career. Her lifestyle may appear to be very regimented and austere, but it is what built a framework upon which she could become a world-class choreographer.

In order to write a book, I needed the space, the time, and the daily discipline for writing. If I could not establish that, wiring a book would just remain wishful thinking. After I read Ms. Tharp’s book, I started to take a critical look at my daily routines and held them up against my mission. I found that some things had to change.

So maybe the reasons that are holding you back from taking action are the typical ones: fear, lack of resources, and low self-esteem. But maybe not. Maybe you have to start by looking at your personal disciplines and daily routines. Are you prepared to sustain success?

“Farmers who wait for perfect weather never plant. If they watch every cloud, they never harvest.” (Ecclesiastes 11:4 NLT)

(I photographed the beautiful pink flowers in Scotland at the Edinburgh Botanical Garden in May 2014.)

About Linda Freeman

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Linda Pulley Freeman combines her specialized training in environmental and chemical engineering with her deep ministerial commitment as she serves mission fields at home and abroad.

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