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Press On

August 25, 2020

Last week, we held a retreat for our ADDO team. 

We hold these retreats twice a year, but this one was different as we made extra efforts to be socially distant while still having fun. 

The theme that ran throughout our retreat was “Press On”.

This message our team rallied around is important for all of us. Let’s be honest: None of us can change a single thing that happened so far this year. We can’t go back. We can’t do it over. But we can learn from what happened, make adjustments, and commit to giving the rest of the year all we’ve got.

It was important for our company, and it’s important for you to be reminded that:
We can’t control COVID-19.
We can’t control whether or not schools are meeting in person.
We can’t control how this pandemic impacts our clients and customers.
We can’t control our ever-changing calendars as events are cancelled, rescheduled, or modified.

But we can control how we approach the rest of the year. We chose this theme of pressing on because it stands against the two easier alternatives that stand before all of us: to Give Up or to Go On. 

1. Give Up. There are many people who have decided to write off 2020. They would say any potential is gone. It’s a lost year. And they are ready to move on to 2021. I’ve seen some poignant (and often funny) memes that illustrate this. They say things like: “I can’t believe I stayed up until midnight and shot off fireworks for this.” Or the memes that display different faces of a well-known character for each month of this year. In January and February, the character looks positive and hopeful, but with March and April come panic, May and June look depressed, and July through the end of the year looks like all hope is lost. 

I get it. They are funny. But far too many people have truly given up on 2020.

Giving up is the wrong choice.


2. Go On. On the surface, this option seems better. However, the go on mantra is simplistic and naive. This is the Pollyanna perspective that tells us to just look for the best and keep going, ignoring the obstacles staring you in the face. Just go on and don’t think too hard about the bad things in your life. Wishful thinking but bad advice. 

Our goal was to find a third option, and we went all the way back to Paul’s writings in Philippians to do it. 

How should we face the mounting obstacles of 2020? We should Press On. In Philippians 3:14, Paul states: “I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” In the face of persecution, pain, and hardship, Paul pressed on to fulfill the call God had given him. 

Think about it: The word “press” doesn’t elicit much excitement. To be pressed means pressure has been applied. Can you relate? Many of you are feeling a lot of pressure. We are often hard pressed. Sometimes we are depressed. Some people are suppressed. Others feel oppressed. But Paul challenges us to press on. 

You may be in a place of hard pressing, but you don’t have to stay there. You can press on to pursue your calling.

As a company, we’re not going to naively pretend that life is easy. But at the same time, we’re not going to throw in the towel and give up. We are going to press on because we have a purpose to pursue. We have clients and customers who depend on us. And we have a mission to inspire people today to impact tomorrow.

My challenge for you today is the same one that I gave my team at our retreat last week. While you may feel like you need to choose between giving up or going on, you have a third choice. Press on. Keep moving forward because the world needs what you have to offer.


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