I truly hope and pray that all of you and your loved ones are safe and healthy during this challenging time. I know that one of the biggest challenges right now is staying positive and believing that there is a light at the end of this horrific tunnel. With this message, I invite you all to start truly and deeply believing that there is light at the end. From real-life experiences, I have learned the hard way that worries and doubts are the main inhibitors to making my desires come true. I grew up in a communist country as a strong nonbeliever. Although I didn’t believe in any higher power, I did believe in myself. I had always thought that I didn’t need God because I could figure out everything all on my own. Therefore, I thought people believed in God because they were not smart enough and they needed help. I wasn’t arrogant about it; I just truly believed that whatever I wished for would come true. I was always sure that my dreams would come true simply because there was no other way.
I was constantly happy because all my small wishes and desires during my childhood, elementary, middle, and high school always came true. Then the bigger dreams came into play: the applications for college (and of course I chose the most difficult college to get into in Slovakia, not just because of the skills and academics but also because the only students who got in were the students with connections). The college I chose (because it had been my dream since 5th grade) was Faculty of Physical Education and Sports at Comenius University, Bratislava. To get in, the applicants had to do academic testing and three days of rigorous physical tests in track and field, volleyball, basketball, swimming, and gymnastics. I lived in a small town with only one high school that had no field, no gym, and no swimming pool to do any sports. To apply for the Athletic College from this high school was almost a joke. I trained very hard for the tests all on my own without a coach, even the high jump—which was pretty comical when I think about it now. The athletes who got into this school were mostly those who played for the clubs or whose parents were very well connected. There was literally no chance for me to get into this college (I didn’t play for any club and my parents had absolutely no connections), but regardless of the odds, I truly believed and knew with every cell of my body that I would get in. And I did!
During my last year in college, I became fascinated with fitness and bodybuilding. I read all the fitness magazines. One day, I found an article about a young Slovak man who owned a gym in Los Angeles and trained Hollywood celebrities. I showed the article to my mom and said, “One day I’ll be training in this gym.” My mom laughed and said that there was a better chance of me flying to the moon than going to America; I didn’t speak any English, we had no money to pay for my trip, we had no connections in the USA, and the owner of the gym had no idea who I was—why would he hire me? But again, I had one thing working for me: I deeply believed and knew that I would someday be working in that gym. Sure enough, three years later in 1993, I came to America and began working at that very gym—and I have been here ever since.
Now, moving many years forward, two weeks ago I was getting very frustrated because we were running out of toilet paper. Every day, in frustration, I went to different stores, but with no luck. Then one morning I woke up with a very good feeling, and I deeply believed that today would be the day: today I would be getting toilet paper. I drove up to the store and there they were: one package of toilet paper and one package of paper towel, sitting on the shelf as if waiting just for me. I texted my friends the picture of the paper products with the comment, “Today is a great day!” I believed it, and I knew it.
I am not saying that everything I have wished or dreamed of has come true in my life. No, not everything, because many times I have wrapped my dreams and wishes into worries and doubts. But those dreams in which I most deeply believed, all came true. The most important element was trust. Trust that making your wishes and dreams come true is the highest priority of your Creator. Trust is a deep-rooted belief in place of worry and doubt because, with doubt, we build a solid brick wall that sunlight can’t shine through.
I know this is a very difficult time, but truly, we have only two options: we can worry ourselves sick, or, rather, we can have faith and trust that we will get through this and come out as even stronger and more loving human beings.
Whatever we choose to water is what will grow.