Choose to move forward

Photo by Vicki Harris

Photo by Vicki Harris

Setbacks are only temporary delays, but when you stop believing, you have decided your fate.

We all make mistakes and suffer setbacks here and there as we try to navigate through life. For some it has been becoming involved with a person whose character you misjudged. He or she caused you a tremendous amount of pain in ways that you never saw coming. Perhaps the relationship was a story of abuse, both physically and emotionally compounded with instances of infidelity and grave mistrust. Maybe he or she left you in a state of financial ruin, leaving you with only 2 choices-1-Give up or 2-Get up.

For some it has been an early and unplanned pregnancy. The situation made you feel terribly ashamed and caused you enormous internal suffering. You wrestled with thoughts of how people in your family, church, and school would look at you and the judgmental things that they might say. Perhaps your story was different than the others you had heard. You were smart and came from a good home and this sort of thing did not happen to good girls like you. You cried day in and day out gripped with fear as all of your goals and aspirations flashed before your eyes. Maybe your situation knocked the wind out of you and left you with only 2 choices-1-Give up or 2-Get up.

For some, it has been the lure of fast money leading to participation in criminal activities. You were introduced to a lifestyle of crime as a means to escape the grip of poverty and to satisfy a need to be self-sufficient. Perhaps you felt that life did not offer you any other options. No stable parental figures or home life to speak of. No opportunities for someone who comes from your side of the tracks. You rationalized your actions as "doing what you had to do" in order to survive. Each day you gambled with your life and then, oneday you lost your freedom. Maybe the lure of fast money and instant gratification cost you much more than you had anticipated. And, maybe being incarcerated broke you down and left you alone with only 2 choices-1-Give up or 2-Get up.

We all have our stories, some similar, some vastly different in content and in length, but the turning point comes about the same way every time. The turning point comes in our lives when we experience our greatest lows and are met with "the test". The test is really nothing more than making a choice between giving up and getting up.

Our bad decisions and mistakes can have a temporary negative effect in our lives or a lifelong one. Our bad decisions and mistakes can either be temporary setbacks that will move us forward for the better or permanent positions that will hinder our growth and kill all hopes for what might have been.

No matter what your setback is, or was, there are really only 2 choices from which to choose. The choice is yours.

Be encouraged.

Contact columnist LaTonya Dunn at ln_dunn@yahoo.com.