Last weekend was an exciting time because our son, Kaleb, graduated from law school. There were several places on campus Kaleb wanted to take pictures. One of those places was a place we visited and took pictures the first time we went to the campus. Kim took a picture of Kaleb that day from behind and him looking out at what they call the Law Quad. On graduation day she recreated that picture with Kaleb in his cap and gown holding up his graduation diploma. Kim put the pictures side by side and posted them on social media with the caption “He dreamed it! He did it!”
I looked at the picture and was so proud of our son and the great accomplishment he achieved that he had dreamed of since high school. I began to think as I looked at the two pictures. One showed the first day and the second showed the last day. Where he began and where he ended up and the excitement of the before and after.
What the two pictures didn’t show…
Kaleb’s first day at law school was amid a pandemic. His long days on campus. His hours and hours of reading. His pages and pages of writing papers. His stressful late nights about an upcoming exam. His discipline to accomplish his goals. His unwavering focus. His emotional breakdowns.
Yes, the pictures are inspiring to look at to see the beginning and end of the journey. The unseen is even more inspiring. The unseen is what we call the process. The process is oftentimes not as exciting as the before and after. The process is when our true character comes out deciding what we do in those times will dictate what the after picture will look like.
My challenge to each of us is to remember that we all want the after picture but few are willing to go through the process to get there. The after picture does not come free of charge. It requires focus, hard work, discipline, commitment, and the will to never give up.
Few will endure the process to reach the goal to hold their hands up to say, “I dreamed it! I did it!”
Will you be one of the few?