It was a fun weekend with my “girl” cousins from out of state. We have shared memories, losses, and moments of joy, separation and heartaches since we were kids. Now in our 50’s and 60’s, the family bond continues to grow. At this life stage, we find we need each other more than ever. We are losing parents and siblings to death; while dealing with health issues and transitioning into retirement years.

I found this reunion a time of letting go, but also of holding on. With tears and laughter, we encouraged each other to let go of those things we can’t change and instead focus on what lies before us (holding on. Bonding with family is a healing balm to the soul, especially when fortified with a family unity of faith in Christ Jesus.

Letting go and pressing on in the midst of life circumstances is a non-stop challenge. Perhaps you are confronting addiction, health or financial problems, divorce, an unplanned pregnancy, death, a custody battle, or a lawsuit. Whatever life circumstances you face at this moment continue to move forward with steps of faith. Keep your eyes on the prize, not on the challenges.

“Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.” (Martin Luther King)

Life is a marathon, but no one said you can’t finish the race with baby steps. Every step forward is a step away from our current situation and toward something better. Apostle Paul suggests letting go and moving forward requires a ‘straining’ effort. Make no mistake that faith in Christ will empower our steps, but ONLY if we make an effort to move forward.

“… But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

Philippians 3: 13-14

7 steps for moving forward:

•Let go of others’ opinions. Take them as a grain of salt. Others aren’t going through your circumstances.

•Let go of excuses and make decisions. The blame game gets you nowhere. It’s like standing on a treadmill that isn’t in motion.

•Let go of how you thought life would play out; instead learn to embrace the moment.

•Let go of regret; be thankful for what you have now.

•Let go of yesterday’s failures; they have nothing to do with the current moment.

•Let go of earthly time; God doesn’t operate within our time frame and bribery will get you nowhere. (I testify to that truth!)

•Let go of trying to figure out the future. Life is determined by the steps you take today.

Letting go (while holding on) and surviving the storms of life is a lifetime effort. But, when each storm is over, you will be a different person and wonder how you survived.

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