Stories math_struggle

Published on April 27th, 2015 | by Hannah Leake

Struggling With Math Taught Me How to Change the World





I can’t say that my journey of doing hard things has been anything spectacular. In fact most of ya’ll would possibly consider me the least experienced to write on this topic.

I never ran any political campaign, never raised an enormous amount of money for some kind of organization or ministry; never started a business. I am just Hannah, a simple rather unordinary ordinary girl.

Nevertheless, hard things do exist in my life.

The dreadful math monster of doom… Seriously.

Math stands as one of my biggest most tear-producing, frustrating, despicable, painful, and discouraging obstacles in my life and it all began at age 5 or 6.

I realize that there are lots of people who have struggled or are struggling with math and I am sure there are lots of you reading this who can totally relate to my story; the story of fighting and failing, of giving up and trying again, yet of eventual victory and freedom.

I vividly remember those days of old. Each passing day was a struggle. Year by year went by and math continued to haunt me. I went through algebra 3 or 4 times, yet still didn’t understand and eventually ended up graduating simply because I had to move on in life and couldn’t stay in high school forever just because of math.

College didn’t save me from this dreadful monster either. It continued to haunt me, stalk me, and hurl its self at me. I needed 4 credits of math in order to graduate from this college whether I got an associate’s degree or a bachelor’s.

I studied for a math CLEP test for two summers in a row (a horrible way to spend your summer, by the way) and then I studied again over my Christmas break, yet each time I freaked out and never took the test, knowing for sure that it would destroy me and I would be unable to pass the test.

Now in my third semester of college and spring break just around the corner, I knew that I must defeat this math. I signed up for the CLEP, studied for it one last time, and took the test with fear and trembling, yet with prayers surrounding me.

I am pretty sure that was the longest hour and a half I ever experienced, yet by God’s mercy and grace and many people praying, I passed the test with exactly the percentage I needed.

Trying to learn math. Learned perseverance instead.

I openly admit that I failed and gave up on multiple occasions, yet God never gave up on me and he gave me the courage to get back up and try again. And yeah, I got back up only to fail again, yet God was still there for me.

My point is, doing hard things often requires failing and maybe failing lots. Doing hard things may not be something extraordinary and glamorous, but could mean simply being faithful in a school course, such as math.

Doing hard things doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll change the world, but simply being faithful to persevere in the little things that don’t seem to make a difference.

I used to feel discouraged because while so many rebelutionaries were, it seemed, doing all these great and amazing things, I would sit in my home and struggle through another lesson of math, never seeing any fruit from my labors and always failing.

Yet I now can look back and see that it was one more thing in my life that I did persevere through and for that I am grateful. Doing the hard thing of finishing my math may not change the world, but persevering can (just read the story of William Wilberforce).

What challenges are teaching you perseverance?


Share Your Thoughts in the Comment Section!

There are currently 9 Comment(s)


Photo courtesy of Pierre Lognoul and Flickr Creative Commons.


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About the Author

is a homeschool graduate in her senior year of college. She is the oldest daughter and middle child of nine born with a little too much sass and sarcasm. In her spare time she can be found babysitting for a friend, baking, writing, studying, watching yet another Gunsmoke episode, attempting to succeed at Ping Pong, working, or volunteering at her church.



  • Josh A

    The dreadful math monster of doom!!!! I’m totally with you there! XD Thanks for sharing! =)

    • You’re welcome! Hope it was encouraging! :)

  • MimeforJesus :)

    My challenge is getting done with school on time. I have soooo much to do, mostly because I procrastinated earlier this year, and I have to get done by June 1. That’s my challenge right now.

    • Gabrielle

      Wait a minute, you changed your name again!! :)

      • MimeforJesus :)

        Yep. Everybody liked MFJ better :)

        • Gabrielle

          :)

    • Aw, I understand completely (and then some, lol). I probably won’t be done with math and physics until the end of the summer (and that’s only with a lot of hard work). Oh well…

      • MimeforJesus :)

        Yeah…

    • @mimeforjesus:disqus, I had the same problem when I was still being homeschooled. Now that I am in college I have no choice, but to get my homework done on time, but I believe this will be my first summer of not having any home work to do, because I always procrastinated so much that I had to do homework almost every summer for at least part of it. I will pray for you right now that you have the strength and grace to persevere. 😉

      • MimeforJesus :)

        Thank you, Hannah :) I do appreciate the accountability from classes outside the house like co-op and dual-enrollment. Full classes at college actually sound great!

    • Becca<3

      I KNOW! I procrastinate so badly. I have to finish chemistry this year (should have done it last year…) and I’m on module 6 of 16 (I use Apologia). I also have many other courses that i have to start but it’s so overwhelming! I’ll be praying for your schoolwork!

      • I did apologia too, and loved it! Believe it or not, I really enjoyed chemistry even though it does have a lot of math stuff in it, but I only enjoyed it as long as I wasn’t taking a test. Hehe!

        • MimeforJesus :)

          I love Apologia! XD

        • Becca<3

          I do really like chem, it’s just that the math formulas are pretty heady and I can get my units mixed up really easily. One thing I LOVE to do is balance equations! it’s like a puzzle:)

      • MimeforJesus :)

        Thank you, Becca! I’ll be praying for you, too :)
        *whispers* I’m on module 5, if it helps you feel better. I like my book, but it’s just so stinkin’ hard!

        • Becca<3

          lol that’s great! Yeah it’s because of the math that I’m struggling!

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Yeah…

      • I’m on Module 6 too!! But for physics. :)

        • MimeforJesus :)

          Physics… So happy I’m doing their Advanced Biology course!

          • How is their biology? I took BJU biology. Yeah, physics is rough… :(

          • MimeforJesus :)

            I love biology, so… probably not the best person to answer. But I love it!

          • Haha, well that’s awesome that you love it!!

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Yep, I love it!!

  • Abigail McCoy

    Thank you.

  • Ruthie C

    I have a LOT of trouble with math as well. School would be fairly easy for me if it weren’t for that. I guess math is the hard thing God is calling me to right now!
    Great job writing this and thanks, Hannah!

    • Yep! I know what you mean. Math was always my most difficult subject. But now that math is over (and I know you will make it through too), I am discovering that learning Greek is almost just as hard, but for totally different reasons. Because unlike math, where there is always a right and a wrong answer, the Greek language seems to be changing its mind all the time. 😉

  • Haylie

    Thank you for sharing this, Hannah! I can certainly relate to the math monster of doom 😉 I have never thought about school in light of teaching perseverance. What a neat perspective!

    • Haylie, I am glad my post has given you a new perspective on school. And it looks like a lot more people struggle with math than I realized. 😉

  • Great post! God and prayer is the answer for everything!

    • Thanks and Amen! 😉

  • Holly

    Hello everyone, I’ve been reading The Rebelution for a while but I just created an account. I would like to say that I’m blown away by how respectful I’ve observed everyone to be in the comments. You guys are inspiring!

    • Caleb N.

      Well, we try to be honoring to each other so that in doing so, Christ may be honored. Thanks for the compliment and welcome to the Rebelution @hnlr:disqus !! =)

      • Holly

        Thanks Caleb!

    • Cassie

      Welcome @hnlr:disqus! Glad to have you here! I appreciate the respect shown to me and others in every discussion too. :)

      • Holly

        Thanks Cassie!

        • Cassie

          You’re welcome!
          Oh hey – if you appreciate the respect we show each other, I know where you can find even more of it… Over on Revive! Pretty much it’s a site that was started by two of the boys from over here (Sam S and Ethan H; you might know of them if you read The Reb comments), where us teens can share prayer points and praise points, chat, debate (with kindness!), ask each other tough life questions, etc. Lots of people who are on The Rebelution are over there too. It’s really an amazing community. Here’s the link: revivingtheredeemed.org It’d be cool to see you over there!

          • Holly

            Thank you Cassie, I’ll have to check it out!

    • Christina

      I know Holly! I just joined as well and I have been blown away by how respectful and just down right nice everyone is! It sure is nice! But WELCOME!!

      • Holly

        Thanks Christina! Welcome to you also! I love your name by the way :)

        • Christina

          Thanks Holly! Ha ha I think that is the first time I have been told that!

      • Welcome to both of you!!! I’m so glad you guys are enjoying the community here! 😀

        • Christina

          Thanks Sam! Really appreciate it!

    • Josh A

      Hey, welcome to the Reb! =D

      Oh, and I second @disqus_0EPlfBsVWj:disqus’s recommendation of Revive. =)

      • Holly

        Thanks Josh! I’ll definitely have to go take a look

    • Welcome to the comments, Holly!! 😀 I’m so glad you decided to join us! I totally agree. I’ve been commenting here…for a long time (lol!), and it still blows me away how awesome and respectful everyone is, even in situations where opinions differ.
      See you around!! =)

      • Holly

        Thank you Christy! I am super excited to be here!

    • Thanks a lot, Holly! 😉 we try our best!!!

    • Hi Holly! Glad you joined the community of commenters. 😉 I too have noticed that very same thing and have been so blessed and encouraged to see the love and respect everyone shows each other on here. 😉

      • Holly

        Thanks Hannah!

    • Ezra Walls

      Welcome to the Reb y’all!

    • Haylie

      Hey there, Holly! Glad to have you here :)

      • Holly

        Thanks Haylie! I’m delighted to be here!

  • Skylar

    I can totally relate with ya’ll. Math is the hardest subject in school.
    Thanks for this, Hannah! :) I will keep persevering!

    • Sorry to hear you don’t like Maths. I really like them! Do you guys all call it ‘Math’?!!!

      • Skylar

        Yes. We do call it ‘Math’. Why do you call it ‘Maths’?

        • I’m actually not sure, but everyone in the UK calls it that! Gotta go now and drive 45 mins to pick up our fortnightly shopping – thats what it’s like In the WILD Western Isles of Scotland!!!

          • Skylar

            Woah. That’s cool that you live in the UK I was wondering if you lived over that way *gestures vaguely* :) Have fun!

          • “Maths”, “fortnight”… Lol. :) My autocorrect did not like maths.

          • Ha ha – where do you live in the US?

          • Skylar

            I live in Missouri. :) Kansas City to be exact. Where do you live in the UK?
            Sorry it took me so long to respond, I got logged out somehow and couldn’t remember my password!

          • That’s OK mate! Easily happens. I live on the Western Isles of Scotland.

          • Skylar

            Cool. 😀

          • Emigb4

            OH MY GOODNESS YOU LIVE IT SCOTLAND?!?!? I love Scotland! Never actually been there but I love the Scottish music, classic culture, landscape, and accents. Mostly the stereotypical Scottish accent. That’s awesome! I’d love to visit there someday.

          • Cool – maybe I’ll see you then!!! 😉 Which sort of accent do you mean? ‘Doon’ in Glasgow it’s quite different from up here in the isles, which is more a very slow and soft way of speaking. I have just learned Scotland the Brave on the piano – I can’t stop playing it!!!

            Glad you like Scotland!

          • Emigb4

            I didn’t realize there were different kinds of accents (so now I’m really excited). My favorite Scottish tunes are probably Danny boy and Loch Lomond.

          • Lol. Those songs are good. Try ‘Scotland the Brave’ or the Nat anthem ‘O Flower of Scotland’ 😉

    • Hi Skylar, I am glad you were helped by this. Now that I am done with Math, it is encouraging to see that I really wasn’t alone in my struggles. 😉 Glad you are going to persevere! Its worth it! 😉

      • Skylar

        Your welcome. And thanks! 😀 Math is extremely hard for me. So I’m glad I’m homeschooled so my parents (and little sister) can help me understand it better. :)

  • Caleb N.

    I also can relate to the math monster. (Mine’s named geometry by the way) This is an awesome article; thanks for your thoughts and inspiration Hannah!

    • Gabrielle

      Hello there Caleb!! How long have you been doing geometry? Is it super hard?

      • Caleb N.

        Hey Gabrielle! Geometry is finally behind me (Thank God) and it was super hard. I had to get a tutor, and my eye starts twitching whenever I see a trig problem. 😀

    • Josh A

      BWAHAHAHAHA I AM THE PROOFS AND THEORUMS MONSTER I AM HERE TO EAT YOUR GPA!!!!! XD

      • Hahaha, I can so relate to that! The proofs do get easier though…or maybe everything else just got harder. 😛

        • Josh A

          Lol yeah it seemed like that for me too…and my GPA survived! =D

          • Hoorah! 😀 What math are you doing now?

          • Josh A

            Stats (in College). You actually take different classes every semester in college, so last semester I took College Algebra. Next semester I won’t be taking any math math, but I’ll be in Chemistry and Micro Econ, so it’s going to feel like I will be. =P

            Hbu?

          • I’m confused…are you saying that you’re in college? 😮 Sounds tough!
            I’m working through Saxon’s “Advanced Mathematics”. It’s basically precalculus, trig…all that fun stuff. 😛

          • Josh A

            Ahh I didn’t know you didn’t know. XD I’m doing dual enrollment as a junior in high school. =)

            Precalc, trig…sounds fun. *are you getting wet from my dripping sarcasm yet* XD

          • Becca<3

            Oh dual enrollment! That’s awesome! I’m hoping to dual enroll full time for my senior year and then potentially go to a community college for one additional year before transferring to a university for a songwriting degree:) at least that’s the plan for now

          • Josh A

            Cool! =) It’s a lot of work, so be prepared!

          • Caleb N.

            It IS quite a lot of work…

          • Lol! *grabs a towel*
            Ok, now that you mention it I think I remember you saying something about that. What is it like? :)

          • Josh A

            BUSY!!! XD But I think it’s totally worth it, I mean you get to take college classes for FREE and by the time I’m done I’ll be able to join college as a sophomore. =P

          • That’s really cool! And the free part is definitely nice. XD

          • Josh A

            YES! That alone makes it worth it lol.

          • Does it affect your scholarships at all once you go to a university or something? Because I was told that transfers get fewer scholarships…

          • Josh A

            I had to ask my mom lol…she basically says you can’t get any “freshman” scholarships (but she’s still talking hahaha).

          • Lol XD that last bit. That makes sense though…so for me that would pretty much negate the benefits of the dual enrollment being free. :/ Scholarships are a big deal for me. I’m about to graduate though, so it’s not like any of this matters, anyway, haha. I was just curious. :)

          • Caleb N.

            Hey! @josh_whatshislastname:disqus ! I also am a junior doing dual enrollement who is ALSO taking a stats class . XD

          • Josh A

            Sweet!! That’s cool! =P Whaddya think of it so far?

          • Caleb N.

            It’s tough, but I enjoy the challenge. My previous high school courses didn’t make me want to do the work as much as this course has. I get to learn at a new level, prepare for college, and witness to other students, all of which are terrific. =)

          • Josh A

            Agreed! =)

          • Caleb N.

            Yep! But my classes aren’t for FREE =P They are cheaper though.

          • Josh A

            Really? What scholarship/grant/whatever do you get? In Georgia we have Move on When Ready and Accel (but homeschoolers have to use Accel)

          • Caleb N.

            No scholarship/grant, just the college I attend gives cheaper credit hours for dual credit students.

          • Sydnie

            How do you like that dual enrollment? I’m most likely going to do that next school year

          • Josh A

            It’s good! A lot of work, but I mean (I told this to Christy somewhere on this thread too lol), you get to take college classes for FREE and by the time I’m done I’ll be able to join college as a sophomore. So it’s definitely worth it!

          • Sydnie

            Yeah I’m looking at a mass media class to start with because I have to get above a C in it or else I can’t take any more classes. If I took a math classes they’d kick me out of the program for bad grades…..

          • Josh A

            Haha =P

          • AnnaGrace

            Ugh…Advanced Mathematics…the stuff of nightmares. I did really well in math until I hit that book…

          • Yeah. :( I’m still doing well, but it takes me hours to get through one lesson. I have to read and re-read it and Google stuff trying to figure it out. 😛 What grade did you take it in?

          • AnnaGrace

            11th and part of 12th. I finished high school…so I’m a little older than some of you…which makes me wonder sometimes if I should stop commenting on here even though I still follow it.

          • Ah, ok. I’ll actually be graduating this year, but I’m graduating early, so I’m probably still a good bit younger than you. Well, I think if you’re encouraged by the community on here, you should stay. Don’t make it about how old you are; ask yourself if God is blessing you through your time commenting on the Reb. If so, stick around! And if He’s telling you to move on, follow His lead. :) Those are my thoughts, anyway.

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Congratulations!

        • Ruthie C

          I think that’s just how math is… The things that once were really hard for you start to seem easy because you have to do other, harder things now. 😛

          • Yeah, that’s pretty much it… Like a long (long!) time ago, I was really upset about memorizing the multiplication tables, because they were SO hard. Lol XD

          • Ruthie C

            I KNOW!! In 5th grade I would spend 2 hours every day in tears over multiplication problems. If only all I had to worry about right now was “long” division. xD

          • YES. I remember I used to play “school” with my friends (why on earth would anyone want to play school? I was doing it and I don’t even know!). I was so proud (which I feel bad about) when I learned long division before everyone else. XD

          • Ruthie C

            XD That’s really funny! I used to play school (and house and Little House on the Prairie and astronauts and Noah’s Ark…) with my sister when we were really little.

          • Haha, cool! Didn’t we have the best games when we were younger?! I remember when my best friend and I would pretend we were spies sneaking into some bad guy’s hide out, so we would basically climb across my swing set and try not to touch the ground. Come to think of it, we very rarely actually used the swing set for swinging. XD

          • Ruthie C

            Yes we did! 😀 My friends and I would play homeless orphans running away from either a terrible orphanage or war (not sure where that came from, but it was quite dramatic), “Ghosts in the Graveyard” if it was getting dark, or if we were bored, some kind of made-up war in the woods against the boys.
            Hey, playground equipment just isn’t any good if you can’t use it creatively, right?

          • Wow, that sounds awesome! What is Ghosts in the graveyard? It sounds like something I might have played…
            One of my favorite games used to be blind and go seek. It’s basically hide and seek, but in one room (with the door closed), and the person seeking has their eyes closed. It became less practical as we grew up…it’s hard to hide all six feet of me, lol. XD

          • Ruthie C

            That sounds awesome! 😀
            Ghosts in the Graveyard sounds like a weird, creepy game, but it’s actually really fun. :) One person goes away and hides in some unknown location (within set boundary lines) while everyone stands around a tree (or some other big object), covers their eyes, and very slowly counts to 24. Then, everyone runs out to find the hiding person. The first person to see the hider screams and everyone runs back to the tree. The hiding person tries to tag one person before they touch the tree again. The tagged person then goes and hides while everyone else counts.
            I hope that kind of made sense, I’m horrible at explaining these sorts of things. 😛

          • Lol, that does sound fun! And you explained it well. I probably wouldn’t play, though; I’ve been told I sound like a dying cow when I scream. XD

          • Ruthie C

            Christy, please don’t ever again make me laugh that hard when my little siblings are trying to sleep. XD XD
            Someone actually told you that? Wow. 😛 XD

          • Hahaha! I’m really glad it made you laugh! It was at Six Flags. We were on a roller coaster and I sat next to two of the rudest people I know. I was informed of my dying cow-like qualities immediately after the ride. XD But I kind of have to thank them, because before that, I was screaming too much to enjoy the rides. And we both know I didn’t scream at all after that.
            Anyway. Yeah. I’ve actually never told anyone (outside my family) that, but it’s worth it if it made you laugh! =)

          • Ruthie C

            Wow… okay, that’s pretty rude… 😛 And for the record, I probably sound like a dying cow when I scream too. XD

          • Haha, well thanks, I appreciate that. Yeah…it was like five years ago that that happened, so you know it stuck with me. 😛

          • Ashlyn

            We love Ghosts in the Graveyard! We renamed it Bears in the Woods, though. We like to play it when it’s completely dark out, and then we hang a lantern from our base tree. So fun!

          • Ruthie C

            Bears in the Woods! I like! :)

          • Ashlyn

            :) I’m glad you like it!

          • MimeforJesus :)

            I played school with my siblings! We never got much school done…

          • Cool! Ikr? XD

      • So true. So true.. 😛

      • Sydnie

        Hahahahaha Mine is the al-gebra terrorist group and their weapons of math destruction. They love to mess up my GPA

        • Josh A

          Oh man…I laughed so hard when I first saw this in my email…lol! =D

        • Lol!! I had to read that a few times. XD

        • Caleb N.

          That’s very good, that is. =)

          • Sydnie

            Haha my brother saw that on a facebook post from someone and I had to steal it. Is that Yoda you’re talking like?

          • Caleb N.

            Actually, I think it’s something I picked up from Narnia or LoTR, I can’t quite remember. I just remember someone saying that quote in a scottish brogue =)

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Sounds like Pippin :)

          • Caleb N.

            Yes, yes it does. :)

          • Sydnie

            Nice that reminded me of Yoda for some reason

        • MimeforJesus :)

          That’s great, Sydnie!

      • Caleb N.

        NOOOOOO!!!! NOT PROOFS AND THEORUMS!! BEGONE! XD

        • Josh A

          XD

      • Haylie

        Ahh! No!! I can’t stand it!!! *plugs ears*

      • MimeforJesus :)

        AAAAAAHHHHH!!!! I’ve got to get my engineer-brother to defeat you! In the meantime, I’m running to my room and hiding.

        • Josh A

          Lol =P

    • Caleb, you’re welcome! Glad it was inspiring! Its funny because although I always had trouble memorizing formulas for geometry, it seems that I always did better in that than in Algebra.

      • Caleb N.

        Yeah, I’ve heard that there are two types of people: algebra people and geometry people :)

        • Haylie

          Haha, I’ve heard that too… and yet i stink at both 😉 Oh well!

        • Sydnie

          Really! I thought that was an urban myth! I’m a social outcast now I’m bad at both nooooooooooooooooo

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Don’t worry, there are also people who don’t immediately grasp either concept.

  • Sydnie

    I can totally relate with that math monster there have been times in math for me that I have been literally crying because I get so frustrated with it! And it doesn’t help that I totally zoned out in 3rd through 7th grade math and lost a lot of instruction.

    • Sydnie, I was right there with you. I cried my eyes out so many times because I just couldn’t solve the problem. Do you have anyone in your family that can help you with it or maybe a good friend who is good at math? Sometimes it helps to talk through different math problems with someone.

      • Sydnie

        My cousins and my mom are pretty good with math, I just don’t like to talk on the phone and my mom is always busy helping my 5 siblings with their work.

        • @disqus_Zg1ulAAPsD:disqus, I understand. I had the same problem except my mom isn’t very good with math. It was usually my dad that helped me with it, but that would be late at night after he got home from work. It wasn’t always the most convenient time. 😉
          I never liked talking on the phone either. 😉

          • Sydnie

            Yeah I freaked out when I called my pastors wife to tell her happy birthday last week, and I’ve known her for 5 or 6 years

          • I know the feeling! When I got a job at a restaurant, I had to learn to use the phone, but I always trembled when that phone rang and always hoped that someone else would answer before me. I have gotten better at it now, particularly because of my job experience, but I still get freaked out if it is a business call or something.

  • Christina

    Thanks for the reminder Hannah that sometimes our hard things are the small things. And we just need to have faith and perseverance in them! I have also been discouraged because I haven’t been able to do anything amazing like fellow rebelutionaries as well. But we have to be faithful in all things! (Small and large!) Thanks for the reminder and letting me know I’m not alone! In this and math! And congrats on passing by the way!!

    • Christina, I am glad you found this encouraging! It is sometimes the little tasks that can be the greatest. Maybe its just playing with a younger sibling so your mom can have some rest or making dinner for the family or even just simply persevering through the day to day stuff, but when we do it for God’s glory it makes a world of difference.
      And thank you! It was like a million pounds was lifted off my shoulders when I passed that test. 😉

      • Christina

        I have definitely forgotten sometimes God wants us to play with the younger siblings or make dinner! Having a great relationship with your family can be “rebelling” against society!

  • That is an awesome cover picture for that title. Just saying! :)

    • Gabrielle

      I thought so too Taylor!! :)

    • Josh A

      IKR?

    • I know – a bit AAAGH!

  • Sarah Jungling

    This is exactly what I needed! Seriously. I have been in Algebra 1 for 4 years and still can’t seem to get it…… And then I have friends who are missionaries in Africa and such….. Thank you so much!

    • You’re very welcome, Sarah! Glad it was encouraging!

  • Gabrielle

    Thanks Hannah, it was very encouraging!! I needed to hear that!! Math is a huge struggle for me too, especially since I’ve had so many gaps and major time intervals between doing math. I haven’t done much math this semester or science, which makes me worried if I’ll even be ready for college when I graduate in two years. Since I’m just now getting back to math I have to do a major review. I’m praying that I’ll be able to do math every day now, even through the summer, because I can’t keep having big reviews. My biggest fear…..well, I guess it’s not fear but more of a concern. My biggest concern is that I’ll graduate in three years instead of two because of the learning gaps that I have, but in the midst of all that I’m trying to trust God, ’cause I know through Him I can do all things.

    • Gabrielle, I am so glad you were encouraged by my post! It can be frustrating when things don’t get completed on our own timeline, but it is encouraging to know that God has a reason for it all. I am struggling with my Greek class these days, so I know the feeling. I really don’t want to take an extra year of college, but if I don’t pass my Greek class this semester than I might have to. But whatever happens, I know that God has a purpose in it all.

      • Gabrielle

        Amen!! It’s always good to remind yourself that God’s got you, and that He is your help.

  • Zipporah

    Wow, thank you so much for this story! So encouraging! I constantly feel like I am not doing hard things, or at least BIG hard things. I think though, that sometimes it is the small hard things, the ones your friends and others do not see, the ones that must be done every single solitary day that are the hardest. It takes just as much perseverance! Thanks again!

    • You’re welcome, Zipporah! I am glad it was encouraging for you.
      You have a lovely name, by the way! 😉

      • Zipporah

        Thank you :)

  • This is a fantastic article, @disqus_aeGm5xMIfo:disqus! Thank you for the encouragement to just keep doing the “little” hard things. It’s something I’m struggling with, so it’s a blessing to know that you persevered and made it through yours. :) God bless!!

    • Thanks, Christy! I am thankful that God can use my story to encourage so many others. If nothing else good came out of my Math struggle (which I know that lots has ) than it would be enough to know that my story has encouraged many. 😉

      • Yes! It’s always a wonderful feeling when you can encourage others through your own experiences.

        • I know -it’s great when you can sympathize with someone or tell them about your own experiences.

  • Becca<3

    Wonderful Article!! Math is one of my mortal nemeses, I’m a junior in high school and struggling through algebra 1 while my freshman little brother is ahead of me. I’ve tried ignoring it and simply not doing it (being homeschooled I have that ability… it’s not a good freedom to have!), but I’ve only become more discouraged. I have got to get back into it.

    Another difficult task that has taught me perseverance is rowing. At the beginning of the season I was discouraged because I just couldn’t seem to get good times on my erg tests (racing on a rowing machine for 2,000 meters). However, through continuing to work hard and pray about it, I’ve been able to get better scores! I’ve also been able to encourage a lot of the other girls on the team and they’ve improved as well! I’m so thankful that God has used me in the lives of so many people simply by being an example of joy and having a good attitude. Now, we have 2 weeks before regional championships, and it’s going to get very intense, so I’ll need lots of perseverance to get through practices:) Any prayer for my brothers, myself, and our whole team to do well would be fantastic!! Again, great article:)

    • Becca, thank you for sharing that story! It is encouraging to see how each of us are persevering in different ways and then able to encourage others to do the same.
      I will pray right now that your regional championship would be a great success! :)

    • MimeforJesus :)

      Ohhh, your younger brother is ahead of you? I know how that feels… from your brother’s viewpoint, that is.

      • Becca<3

        We’ve been doing Saxon algebra and I’ve been stuck on lesson 29 for weeks while he’s on lesson 75 or something ridiculous like that…

        • Martial Artist

          Too bad we don’t live close. I could totally help you, cuz math is a breeze for me. Or I could try helping you over this. Or if you’d rather not, that’s okay too. Just offering my services. :)

          • Becca<3

            I appreciate that:) unfortunately my main problem is the fact that my online service (Virtual Homeschool Group) is being stupid and the quiz is giving me the wrong answer even though I know it’s right! It’s the thing with simplifying negative exponents. Like 3^-2 could be written as 1/3^2. On my quiz I have 2^-2, which should be rewritten as 1/2^2 (unless I’m crazy…) but it keeps saying it’s incorrect. So yeah I’m on lesson 29 **hangs head in shame** It’s annoying. When I actually learn the math I can do it, it just takes awhile for me to get the concept. But hey! I got my research paper done and turned in! Next week is my last class for English and I’m so excited! I’ve enjoyed the class but I’m ready to have it off my plate!

          • Martial Artist

            Well to cheer you up, that doesn’t sound like it’s your fault! It sounds like your program is at fault, or they want you to type in negative exponents a certain way. But it sounds like you understand the concept, and that’s what matters.

            And I’m also going to say that book math is always better than computer math. I did algebra I on the computer, and man did I have a hard time. I don’t know how many more years you’ll be doing math at home, but I highly recommend getting something like Saxon (even though that ones pretty tough if you’re not going into a math major in college). Anyway, hope this helps you out! :)

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Wow, it’s a breeze for you?! I mean, it’s not *very* hard for me, I just have lots of things I’d rather do. (Except radians… I really am not understanding those. Little help?)

          • Martial Artist

            The radians are based on pi, so it’s really just to show the relationship between all angles in a circle to pi. Really for me, I just had to memorize them all, like pi over 6 is a 30 degree angle, 2 pi over 6 is a 60 degree angle, and so on. They were a little confusing to me as well, but the more you do it, the easier it becomes. So I would say just memorize and become familiar with them. Sorry it’s not much, but does this help at all? Or is there something more specific that you need help with?

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Mmmk, so… 3 pi over 6 would be a 90 degree angle? (Am I really saying “(3 pi over 6) (radians)”?
            I guess I just need to work with them more. :/

          • Martial Artist

            Yes and yes! That’s exactly it. The best way to remember is that if 6 is denominator, then you are looking at some type of 30 degree angle. If it is a 4, then you’re looking at a 45 degree. If it is a 3, then you’re looking at a 60 degree, and if it is a 2, you’re looking at a 90 degree.

            And yes, you are saying it right. :)

            Hope this helps!

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Thank you! Now I think I’m getting it! (Khan Academy didn’t really explain it in a way that I was getting…)

          • Martial Artist

            Ah! Khan Academy is extremely useful though, even if it didn’t help you this time. :) Glad I could help. Just let me know if there’s anything else mathwise that you need help with!

          • MimeforJesus :)

            I will! :)

        • MimeforJesus :)

          Ohhh… The ultimate triumph! But I feel for ya — I have younger siblings too.

  • mcstache

    ” I’ve learned two things from stealing picnic baskets. One: lite mayonnaise isn’t nearly as good as regular mayonnaise. Two: you can never fail if you don’t stop trying.”

    -Yogi Bear

    “Don’t let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game.”

    -Babe Ruth (Hall of Fame baseball player)

    “Obstacles are those frightful things when you take your eyes off the goal.”

    -Henry Ford

    Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving

    Albert Einstein

    I’m a slow walker, but I never walk back.

    Abraham Lincoln

    • I love these quotes! Thanks for posting.

      • mcstache

        I think I most love Yogi Bear’s. Although I don’t recall ever trying lite mayonnaise.

        • MimeforJesus :)

          Don’t! It tastes terrible.

          • mcstache

            Thanks for the warning!

          • MimeforJesus :)

            You’re welcome!

          • KT

            Hi MFJ! I just saw your bio, that sounds soooo much like me! I’m sixteen too, and I like all of the stuff on your bio (my Spanish isn’t very good) Where do you live?

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Hi KT! Cool! I live on the East Coast (near Maryland/Pennsylvania). What about you?
            I didn’t answer until now because I was taking a two-week break from the internet.

        • Caleb Bykov

          I really like Gummi bears(LOL)

    • Josh A

      XD I love the Yogi bear one! I had forgotten that quote…

    • MimeforJesus :)

      Haha! Lite mayonnaise isn’t nearly as good as regular mayonnaise. :)
      But I like those quotes :)

      • Martial Artist

        I totally agree. :)

    • These are great quotes!

    • thatcher

      awesome quotes

  • This is encouraging, Hannah! I have some areas I need to just persevere through as well – thanks for the reminder that “little hard things” can teach us a lot. :) @disqus_aeGm5xMIfo:disqus

    • Glad it was encouraging @hannahmcintosh:disqus! How’s the persevering going? 😉

      • It’s hard….but going pretty well. :) God’s been teaching me a lesson in priorities, too, and how important it is to have QUALITY time with Him, not just enough to say that I read my Bible that day. :) I think I saw that you subscribed to my blog, so you probably have seen the recent post on the subject! Thank you for asking, Hannah!! That’s sweet of you.

        • That is so encouraging! Yes, I did subscribe to your blog, but I haven’t read that post yet. I will need to read it because I am afraid that is something that I need to work on, as well. I am so bad with prioritizing in general, but especially when it comes to putting God first in my life.

  • Took a break from a math lesson to read this. Perfect timing!
    I’ve had a lot of problems with math, too, for as long as I can remember and I totally relate.
    We probably won’t ever be rocket scientist or anything but we can still do our best.

  • Maybe I need to try that with my physical science and biology, hey? (Grrr.)

    • MimeforJesus :)

      I was going to ask — how’s that going?

      • It’s alright, guess. I need to work really hard to get on schedule to finish this summer.
        Thanks for asking!

        • MimeforJesus :)

          You’re welcome! :)

  • Ezra Walls

    Great article, thanks!

  • Samuel G

    Great article Hannah! As you say, it’s the perseverance we learn through doing these little hard things that matters. I think it’s amazing how our reactions to small, everyday challenges can be a miniature representation of the bigger picture of our lives. As Jesus said, faithfulness in small things helps us move on to greater ones.

  • Joy Swen

    I struggle with both math and science but the problem is that if I want to go to my dream college I have to keep my math and science grades up if I want to have a fighting chance at getting excepted. Thanks for the article Hannah! I can really relate.

  • HeartSeed

    Math is really a monster but it can be tamed by practice
    (like solving the same problem over and over again and faster each time you repeat, then proceed to the next harder problem).

    “If you need wisdom, ask God.” – James 1:5
    “Study to show yourself approved unto God…” – II Timothy 2:15

    in this context:
    “… take courage, I have overcome math.”- my altered version of John 16: 33

  • Christina

    Math is haunting me as well. I have 30 days to finish 137 pages of Algebra 1or I can’t work at camp this summer. STRESS!!!

    • Awe! Yes, I know the feeling. Well, I really hope you are able to get it done on time. Keep on going! You can do it! Philippians 4:13 😉

      • Christina

        Thanks for the encouragement Hannah! I am doing my best to get it finished, but it still seems impossible right now.

  • Joyful joyful

    Is this the wrong place to say that I really enjoy math…and algebra…and physics?!!
    I totally know what you are saying. Actually, the hardest thing I have ever done was become a lifeguard, and God taught me SO MANY LESSONS through what most people might think is not overly significant.
    Very encouraging article :)

    • whoa… you like math??? good for you, wish i could! 😉

  • Caleb Bykov

    I’m struggling in a program that combines algebra 1 and 2…

  • Josiah J.

    Good post. It is perhaps the constant redirecting of the mind to Christ that gives us the most joy in life. God is our strength in our weakness; He is our all in all.

    Excellent reminder to keep God as our focus even in every day problems. :)

  • Priscilla Joy

    Sounds like someone I know…. Great post Hannah! Very engaging! And, I’m proud of you! Now, pray I can do it!

    • Haha! Priscilla Joy, maybe because it is a someone you do know. Study hard and I am sure you will do just fine. 😉

  • thatcher

    im struggling with math but this article really inspired me

  • Gabriel Leake

    Great! What is “this college” you refer to?

    • Gabriel Leake, I think you happen to know! 😉

  • IdPnSD

    Don’t worry! Math and Physics are all wrong. Math is wrong because math uses real numbers. Real numbers are not objects of nature and therefore must be false. Physics is wrong because it uses false math. If you are interested, read the first chapter on Truth at https://theoryofsouls.wordpress.com/ The book is free.

    Moreover, money is false too. For the same reason – money is not an object of nature. Therefore money must be free and abundant at the source – the central bank. Since everything is controlled by this false money – everything in our world has to be false. You cannot create anything true using something false, like money. Thus math, physics, economics, religions are all wrong. Only engineering is correct.

  • Cassie Sistoso

    This has truly encouraged me! I can totally relate! Thanks so much for sharing. I’m sure throughout the coming school year I will look back on this post for encouragement. Thank you so much!

  • Gabriela Anglada

    I have struggled a lot with Pre-Calculus, so I can understand you very well. I detested Pre-Calculus during my junior year, but I had faith to God and wonderful people who never gave up on me. I happily passed the class, and I am so glad about it. That class was a life-changing experience.

  • Jose Javier Santos

    Math for me depending on what im studying can be very scary or just calming. Geometry for me was just the very scary thing that happened to you. I passed Geometry and was very relieved that is over and now im in Algebra 2 and its going good so far. I hope if Algebra 2 is very hard, i will try to not give up and pray like you.

  • Alec Zabel-Mena

    Sadly, I cannot relate to this; I find mathematics trivial. Now, I can, however say that this article may be inspiring to others, but to me, it sounds like you just gave up. I would advise that you keep attempting to understand mathematics; sometimes, it’s just a matter of changing perspective.

  • adrian Fahie

    This is a very inspirational text; but I do not feel that by just praying to God he will magically grant you the wisdom to pass a math test. In my opinion it takes hard work and perseverance in order to get what you want to achieve.

  • Maria Hernandez Feo

    This situation resonates with my own because I also find Math supremely difficult. I believe we all have our own set of virtues but they are not exactly the same and that is one of the reasons why human beings are so dynamic. We are eclectic enough to excel in different fields. I have also spent countless hours in Math tutoring after school and I become so overwhelmed with procedures and formulas that I sometimes feel like surrendering. In spite of this petty conflict, favorable outcomes have risen above all the rigorous work and I pray in my head prior to every Math test (and in other tests as well) and my prayers are answered every time. Perseverance is a major component of success, and those who believe this is not true should really reconsider their attitude and try persevering some time.

  • Daniel Rivera

    I cannot relate to you in your struggle with math which is
    my strong suit. However, I can relate in the sense that I’ve had struggle with
    my languages. My struggles were not as hard as what you when through but there
    are struggles none the less and because of the struggles I went through, not
    only in languages but in life too, I’ve learn how to persevere.

  • Adriana Negron

    In life there are many things that need that perseverance and chance to be taken seriously and you will be able to do it. No matter how much you try and maybe you fall 100 times, but God will be there to stand you up that 101th time and help you persevere what you want. I have personally struggled in math before and will always have a struggle in life, but like mentioned above persevering it and believing that I can even if I am scared is that baby step that will get me to grow. This struggle does not only happen with math, but anything that comes up in life. You have strength and God has put more on you.

  • INIGO SUMAZA

    I suck at math, glad we’re on the same page. But I really find amazing the fact that you would make your personal life public and display yourself to such a broad platform of viewers such as the internet for means of inspiration. Truly says a lot about you as an individual Hannah, keep doing you.
    Halelujah Rebelution

  • FSolis

    Math in itself is a
    challenge to many that must be overcome with practice and hard work. I myself
    am included and to an extent must make the best of efforts to understand that
    which I don’t. Of course, like the challenges in life, one must face them and
    do the best one can do to succeed. Practice and effort is all you need, you can
    pray to God but the one who needs to do the math and thinking is you.

  • Sofia Menendez

    No matter how little the things are in life you need perseverance. To be able to overcome those things you have the force of God with you, you just need a little push from yourself. No matter how hard it is you need to keep puching foward to succeed in life.

  • Ryoko Skelton

    I have had my struggles with maths however, I can really relate this article about perseverance to dancing. When I was younger, I danced as a hobby, now it’s became my passion and my dream career. I have seen and went to several programs and camps where girls (and also boys) are outstandingly better than what I would ever be in my day and age and that has brought me down wich cause me to fail, many times. So I have personally learned that perseverance is vital striving for my passion even if dance is so competitive; once I perceive I can reach as far as I want to matter how much I’ve failed.

  • Maria Maldonado

    I am glad to hear that you did not give up that easily when things got tough. I can relate to this essay because I used to have difficulties with math. But I overcome that
    with hard working and practicing every day. Preserving can take a long time but it’s not impossible to overcome it. Like what Confucius said “It does not matter how
    slowly you go as long as you do not stop”.

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