by Texas Stready

I cracked the blinds Monday morning and was thrilled to see the sun shimmering off Lake Clay. At 10 AM I pulled on my bathing suit and headed towards the dock. Not for sun, but to begin my spring/summer swimming routine. When my feet hit the mucky bottom the smell of algae filled weeds slapped me square in the face. Ewww, is this really necessary?” I wondered.

By the time I reached the midway mark my arms were burning. Like every pain we encounter, the ache triggered an escape plan. “You’ve lost 45 pounds; swimming across this lake no longer has relevance.” Then a movement to my left interrupted that thought pattern. It was Christi, the friend I’d invited to swim with me. She’d been there all along, but because I was so focused on me, I practically forgot about her.

Where’s the Love?

Last year my grandson made a comment that swelled my skull. “Nonas know everything.” As I further considered his remark I realized, Pierce’s respect for my insight springs from my dedicated love for him, rather then my unmatched brainpower. This tells me, if I want to affect people’s lives I must first establish relationship with them.

I met Christi when she showed up in my family group telling a story that was similar to my own. Her car was hit by an eighteen wheeler a year prior, and what the downtime cost her most was muscle mass. Swimming’s a painless way to regain muscle and I know this first hand. That’s how I got her out here.

I know you seek importance too, but true relevance is only achieved when our choices are motivated from a heart of love.

Time spent with Christi has given us a love for each other. I’ve come to learn that physical pain is a constant since her wreck, and I want to help her make that different. That’s why I can’t turn back. You see, she’s horrified of gators and she’d never swim across this lake without me. Not Christi.

Relevance is More

People are a trip. We’re well rehearsed in “the arts”. The art of make-believe. The art of manipulation. The art of instant gratification. Like me, I’m sure you want to stop actively pursuing things that don’t bring beauty. Let’s work together on becoming the kind of people who lengthen our love stroke and broaden our spectrum of influence.

Want true relevance? Then find an artful way to effectively meet someone else’s needs.

[box] At A Radical Difference, here’s what we believe is relevant:

★ Recognizing our significance to God is what gives us value

★ Listening to His whisper makes what we do beneficial

★ Seeking new insight enables us to clarify how to help others[/box]

These three things are about growing and changing. They’re a must if we hope to make a radical difference in the world we live in.

Actions and reactions determine our beliefs, and beliefs dictate what we categorize as relevant. Healthy living isn’t all about me. Once we learn to put self on a shelf, our behaviors take a new course. The Holy Spirit is our Swimming Coach, and paying attention to His constant direction gives every move we make true relevance.


  1. This is very relevant to me at this time. The Holy Spirit is helping me see the many different people I might be able to help through their time of pain as I learn not to focus on mine.

  2. Great blog, Texas. Truth here! The only way to true joy and contentment is to invest in others.

    I’m with Christi. Not sure I’d swim across that lake with you or the gators!

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