It took all the strength we could muster to stand up straight against the wind as we walked along the Portuguese shore; Cape Roca - the farthest point west jutting out into the Atlantic. One never really understands the fierce elements that has made this ocean a menace for centuries until you’ve battled it.
That’s perseverance. It’s different from endurance. Which is why I chose the former as my word for 2019.
A few years before, on our trip to Patagonia, we took a long hike in a national park at the tip of South America: up and down trails surrounded by ancient trees with narled roots. It would have been easy to slip and fall. But, with care and a walking stick, I persevered.
Endurance vs. Perseverance
The dictionary defines endurance as: the ability or strength to continue or last, especially despite fatigue, stress, or other adverse conditions; stamina.
And perseverance? Steady persistence in a course of action, a purpose, a state, etc., especially in spite of difficulties, obstacles, or discouragement. It’s endurance under duress. Pressure. Adversity.
A fine line, don’t you think?
Endurance seems to be static: grin and bear it. And the conditions seem to come from within.
Perseverance suggests movement forward, even under hardships. And those obstacles appear to come from without. Deadlines, bankruptcy, persecution, etc.
As I age, even something as simple as an arthritic hand, a foggy brain or floaters in my eye can stand in the way of progress. And I have the feeling there is much more to come by way of challenges.
So that’s why in 2019, my word of the year will be PERSEVERANCE. I intend to move FORWARD, despite the obstacles in life that threaten my writing career:
- When my eyes get blurry or those floaters invade my vision.
- When my mind is grasping for the right word but just can’t seem to find it.
- When a blank page threatens to undo me.
Or, more appropriately,
- When I feel panicked as my book launch approaches in Spring. . .
Sometimes the way seems rocky. Insurmountable. But, come to think of it, I haven’t been feeling apprehensive about it. It seems God is bringing the right people, a helpful class, or the perfect promotion idea across my path just when I need it.
And although I feel like giving up — just for a moment — when a fellow writer gets an agent or a big- five contract, I know eventually, my time will come.
“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven . . .” Ecclesiastes 3:1
Have you chosen a word for 2019? If so, let me know below. . . If not — why not consider one? Here’s a website to help you choose: http://oneword365.com/
Do you have a need to persevere in the coming year?
My MG Biblical fiction "The Heart Changer" debuted in 2019 with Ambassador International.