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“Grow Anyway”

July 8, 2022
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I recently sent a newsletter out to all my followers to let them know my hub of connection, my website, would be down for several days. It was a last resort. After two years of work on it, my webmaster and I discovered the company we were using to build it were making some not so wonderful business choices. At the time we discovered this, we were only days away from a major expansion of the site. We had to make a tough decision to change companies now rather than after twenty plus more pages were added on. This resulted in the newsletter to my friends and a weekend of heartache.

We had a great plan. Shut everything down Friday night and back up by Sunday morning with a redesign. We cleared our entire weekend to focus on nothing but getting it right.

We didn’t.

We absolutely did not get it right. The new company, although more ethical in business practice was a nightmare to navigate. If it could go wrong, it did. It quickly became clear that the learning curve would be a distraction from completing anything and the old and the new were not going to mesh well. Panic ensued. Decisions were questioned. Frustrations rose. By Sunday evening we had a mess. Thank goodness we also had a backup.

We did the only thing we could—got a refund and restored the site as it was before. We had tried to move to new territory but were unsuccessful. Now we sit exactly where we started with the same problem as before, we did not agree with the company we were with and worried about the long-term issues that would inevitably arise. The big question now? Expand or stay frozen.

With great trepidation, I decided to start expanding anyway. The place I was working from was not ideal. The risk was great that there would be a failure in the future. I did not like the choices of this company and would have preferred to be doing business in a place that cherished its customers more. Yet my choices were frozen or keep moving. I chose to keep moving.

Isn’t that the decision we make every day? I am always waiting for the better, more ethical, more ideal situation to move. I will give when I have enough money. I will spend time with others when I have more time. I will go to church when I find one that fits. I will exercise when I get past this holiday. I will love when they love me back. I will forgive when they are acting right. Every day I make a choice to wait for the better option, convinced I can not expand where I am. There will be too many pitfalls. I have to be in a better place to move forward. I have to be in new territory to be useful. There are going to be long-term issues that arise.

I let these things stop growth. And the enemy loves it.

As scary as it may seem, even if there is no immediate success, even if there will be more work later, even if I do not like where I am, I refuse to stay frozen. I will grow here, where I am planted, and take whatever time and whatever chances I can find. God isn’t waiting for me to get to the right place to grow me, He is waiting for me to realize He can grow me anywhere.

It may go wrong. Things may not be perfect. But in the end, if it does, thank goodness I have a backup that can restore.

Shannon Leach is a slice-of-life encouragement writer and the owner of A Repurposed Heart and ARH Inspirations. Her authentic stories and books about leadership, life, and loving people focus on encouraging others and reminding them they are not alone. Her work can also be found in Guideposts and multiple Chicken Soup for the Soul books. She also holds a bachelor’s degree in Social Work and is the co-founder of the nonprofit The Fostered Gift.
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