Is It Worth It?

“Is it worth it?” Landon asked.

He was excited but anxious. Standing in line to board his first flight, our 8-year old grandson, white-knuckled the handle of his new luggage and asked again, “Nana, is it worth it?”

His fear was anchored to a single newscast he happened to be in their family room to see. Only a few weeks prior to our trip was the catastrophic crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302. Though he was assured a thousand times that air travel is safe, percentages are beyond second-grade math and tragic loss is more than anyone can dismiss.

So we talked through what stepping on this plane would mean. Our trip was filled with exciting firsts—his first plane ride, first visit to New Mexico, first trip with just his Papa, Nana, and 6-year old brother Jack. While he was pumped to visit Uncle Nathan and Auntie Melanie and to experience even more unique firsts that they had planned, his mind was racing faster than a jet plane. In the short term, Landon wondered if the long term was worth it.

He’s not alone. It’s a question asked when considering remodeling projects, new health habits, and anything that requires extra time, effort and resources. With low grain prices, last year’s wet harvest conditions at the heels of this season’s wet planting season, I wonder if we’re the only ones looking across our coffee mugs and asking, “Is it worth it?”

There are two men in our neck of the woods who are practically neighbors to one another and near neighbors to my age. Each weighed the worth-it question but landed in opposite directions. This year one is stepping out of farming, one is stepping in. Both are doing what is right for them and their families.

Which highlights the understanding that this is not a true or false or multiple-choice question. It’s personal opinion. Only one person can answer the question, “Is it worth it?” And that someone is you.

At the crossroads, Landon decided that stepping onto his first flight was worth it. And we have a cargo plane full of memories because he did.

But determining something is worth it is only half the battle. It’s not enough to set our eyes on the long-term. We still have to get there. Getting to the end goal doesn’t happen by accident. Nor by complacency, drifting, or good intentions.

Landon got there by handing his boarding pass to the ticket agent and following me on the jet bridge. I wonder what it will take for you to reach your worth-it goal?

What we want and what comes easy can be two very different things. What we desire and what we actually do can be worlds apart. James Clear, author of Automatic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones, writes, “You’re bound to feel uncertain, unprepared, and unqualified. But let me assure you of this: what you have right now is enough. You can plan, delay, and revise all you want, but trust me, what you have now is enough to start. It doesn’t matter if you’re trying to start a business, lose weight, write a book, or achieve any number of goals… who you are, what you have, and what you know right now is good enough to get going.”

If you determine it’s worth it, take the next step. Hand the boarding pass to the ticket agent, lace up your running shoes, pick up the phone, back out of the driveway and turn toward your goal. Fill up your planter with seed corn or don’t.

Then remember what is true. Your worth is not based on what you choose or choose not to do. Your worth is based on what God says about you. No matter what, you are valuable, loved, and so very worth it.

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