Pressing On Toward The Goal In Spite of Illness

Deni in her younger years

“Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.’ (Philippians 3:12-14)

When I was younger, I did a lot of competitive (“artistic dance”) skating. It consumed my life. From high school into my early 20’s, I skated for 40+ hours a week with my coach over an hour away from where I lived. My goal was to be ready for the day roller skating finally achieved the same status as ice skating and was considered an Olympic event.

Obviously neither of those events happened. Roller skating never made it to the Olympics. Neither did I.

Today I found some YouTube videos showing recent National and World artistic dance competitions. I sat for several hours enchanted by what I saw. My husband watched with me. “Were you that good?” he asked. I told him I was well on my way. However, a life event turned me onto another path.

I fell into “woulda, coulda, shoulda” land. For several hours afterward all I could think of was the loss of my ability to skate now, even if I wanted to.

As I sat quietly, filled with regret, words to a Bible verse came to mind. I didn’t remember it exactly – but I knew it had to do with forgetting the past and pushing towards a new goal.

Trusty soon found me the verse. You just read it above.

I don’t have the same goal now I had then. That goal is left far behind me. In its place is a new goal. It’s a goal we all can achieve, illness or not.

Our new goal if we choose it?

Answering God’s call. And we cannot do that by looking backward.

About the Author:
deni believes that the only true way to deal with chronic pain and chronic illness is to bring them to the feet of her Lord and Savior. Her multiple challenges (Ankylosing Spondylitis, Porphyria, Celiac Sprue, and Atrial Fibrillation to name a few) have taught her many things about herself and her Christian walk. It is her fondest desire that her lessons may be helpful to others as they walk the path of chronic health challenges. She can be reached at Her website is

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