How To Understand The Importance of Persistence


I read a really cool story recently about a 78 year old woman in nearby Valparaiso, Florida who has finally found her biological brother after 60, yes, sixty years of searching! Read all about it HERE. Now granted, searching for a long  lost family member is much easier now with all the internet offers in that regard. However, you have to remember that this search started some 60 years ago when the internet and Al Gore had not yet met.

Point is, thanks to her dogged persistence, she tracked down a member of her immediate family that didn’t know she existed.  Her brother, Fred Vanderwoude is so happy that he’s moving his entire family to Florida to be closer to his long lost sister.

There is something to be said here for that dogged persistence. Author Andy Andrews broke through in the publishing world with a best selling book called “The Traveler’s Gift” which tells the story of man who has lost just about everything traveling through history learning key principles for life success from key historical figures. The last of the 7 principles is “I Will Persist Without Exception”.  “I will persist without exception. I will continue despite exhaustion. I acknowledge the fact that most people quit when exhaustion sets in. I am not “most people.” **

Dogged persistence is evident in just about every success story you can research. Take Andy Andrews himself. After being turned down over 50 times by various publishers, he persisted. After a ten or twenty rejections, most people would give up and move on. Not Andy. He was scheduled to attended a certain dinner, seated at the table of ONE of the publishers who had rejected his book. Andy knew if there was one person MORE influential than a publisher, it had to be the publisher’s wife. Andy waited for the wife to ask him what he’d been working on, and he was ready to pitch his book, and what’s more, he was ready with a copy for her to read. She did just that. She read the book to her husband, the publisher, who sat with rapt attention, and proceeded to publish Andy’s first novel.

That chapter in “The Traveler’s Gift” concludes with this: “I will continue despite exhaustion. I focus on results. I am a person of great faith.”**

Speaking of faith, we are all familiar with the scripture from Matthew 7:7  that reads “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.”

I will never forget a grade I received on a monologue as a freshman drama major in college. My professor, a serious actor himself, gave me a C, with a comment at the top of the page next to the grade, in red marker, that I will always remember. He said: “Logan, there are almost 5 billion people on this planet. No one will notice if you don’t try your hardest”.

Keep on seeking. Persist without exception. Try your hardest, and you’ll be surprised at what you’ll find.

Fred Vanderwoude sure was.

**Excerpts taken from “The Traveler’s Gift” by Andy Andrews. 2002. Published in Nashville, Tennessee by Thomas Nelson. Thomas Nelson is a registered trademark of Thomas Nelson, Inc


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