When an aspiring musician picks up an instrument for the first time, they are not yet ready to perform in a concert. As a matter of fact, this first attempt will probably sound pretty bad. That is okay, everyone starts this way. If we mock and belittle this aspiring musician they may quit; and if they do shame on us!

If on the other hand, we praise and encourage this aspiring musician, and they continue to practice- soon they will play some simple tunes that start to sound reasonably well. The student that keeps trying will improve. The hours of practice and countless failures slowly start to build. With every faltering note and every hour of practice this student will gain new skills. To become a true master of the instrument takes dedication and time.

As people we are often too quick to quit. We say to ourselves, “I am just not good at this,” “I have no talent.” Worse we may tell someone else that they lack talent. We might quit when we are trying to conquer a vice or sin. We try and fail once, twice, or even twenty times and then say to ourselves, “It is impossible, this is just the way I am.”

Of course we will fail! Of course we will stumble! We will fail thousands of times, or even millions– but we shouldn’t quit. Keep trying, keep practicing, keep going, keep encouraging others. We can master a skill or ourselves. If we include God daily in our attempts to improve, the process will be better. It may not always feel easier, but it will be better. And if we keep trying someday we will gain the mastery that we have long dreamed of achieving.

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