The last few months have flown by and despite grad school and all the other projects I have been working on nothing has come full-circle. I have teetered back and forth over career paths and I have been unable to place my foot on a path towards my future. Unfinished projects, set backs and loss has left me feeling unaccomplished, unfulfilled, lonely and uninspired. I feel like I am stuck in quicksand while everyone else is moving forward. Comparison is the thief of joy, but with social media comparison feels more like the grim reaper of joy. When you look at your friends or former classmates it is almost instinct to compare where they are in life to where you are currently (at least it is for me). Scrolling through IG or Facebook is low key depressing. I have had to delete the apps just so that I am not continuously comparing myself to others. Seeing engagements, weddings, births,pregnancies, career success and traveling is more depressing to me than looking at some celebrity’s fake bod. Comparing myself to others has been a challenge I’ve faced my whole life. Always feeling as if I am not good enough, I haven’t made enough money, not smart enough, pretty enough- enough is enough!
In my recent One Tree Hill-Netflix binge I have come to the realization that staying in YOUR lane is the only way to not only obtain success but also internal joy. If you’ve never seen One Tree Hill you’re totally missing out on some incredible life lessons like-trusting the process, pursuing your dreams, timing, dedication, loyalty, joyfulness in the midst of pain and fate. The cast overcomes some admittedly outrageous circumstances but the point is that each one of their journeys, ups and downs, wins and loses, hardships, heartbreaks, failures and successes are incomparable and personalized to teach them exactly what it is that they needed to learn. No two paths are identical in this life, copying, or following the footsteps of someone else’s is never going to bring you happiness or allow you to be who God called you to be. Our view of each others paths are just our perspectives, judging the difficulty of someone else’s course is easy from a birds eye view but much different when you’re carrying the load up the hill.
Life is all about seeking your own course- the one your spirit needs you to follow. God has given us each a gift and you can only step into your greatness when you allow your spirit to follow it’s own path. Ultimately, life is about sharing your gift. Everything in your life isn’t for you, it is also for others. Whether you are meant to inspire millions or one, become the next president or be a stay at home mom-your gift, your being is meant to be unique and shared.
Your life journey may become a beacon for others to follow their own dreams. Despite your pain, losses, and hardships you’ve shown strength and determination to continue and persevere. Or maybe you gave up things to sacrifice for where you are now, maybe your story is the one that needs to be told to help someone else who needs to find their faith, courage or strength to sacrifice for their loved ones. No one’s gift is any better than the next. What is important is that we are striving to give the world our gifts each day with a joyful, giving and loving attitude and spirit. The Lord doesn’t just bless you, he blesses you so that you can be a blessing to others.
Our significance as humans is intertwined in our interdependence. We need one another’s gifts to make the world a better place. Embarking on your own journey, listening to your heartsong, your inner being will allow you to accomplish things you thought were impossible and see things that were once invisible. When you look only outwardly for motivation and creativity you get in your own way. Your gifts are inside of you, your talents and beauty are all wrapped inside of you. Your answers are inside of you.
If everyone’s successes seem to trump yours ask yourself not only what success means to you, but why is it that you believe that is what success is? Reflecting on those answers can allow you to change course, propel yourself towards something new or reignite a fire you blew out. Remind yourself who’s agenda you are pushing and who you are living for. Is it for God and his mighty plan over your life or is it a selfish desire to be better than someone else or have more things? While there is nothing wrong with goals, remind yourself that his plan is far greater. Surrendering to that inner voice, utilizing that wonderful gift He’s given you is exactly what the world needs.
YOUR path is YOURS, it is unique and it is meant specifically for YOU. Stay focused on your footsteps, your inner voice and your gifts. While it may be hard to discover your gift, that too is part of the journey. Be joyful in the pursuit and grateful for each other’s paths. While we should celebrate and be glad for one another’s achievements we should also be understanding of what it is we do not see and draw motivation from their faithfulness and commitment to their excellence. You will never have peace, joy and love if you can not appreciate and celebrate your uniqueness and realize the power you have in being you.
Favor is not a coincidence it is a consequence of your decisions. Some of us have much better discipline and will stay on track while pursuing our purpose. Favor can move you from the pit to the palace so stay patient and obedient in your faith. You will always harvest what you plant. So harvest your life-the one that is uniquely made for you. God is a way maker-seek him continuously and he will illuminate the path. Give him thanks!
I am getting back on my path by remembering the power of obedience. I have been called to serve and lead youth, I have to be obedient to every move God asks of me while maintaining a joyful spirit in the chaos and uncertainty of transitions. I am confident in my gifts, but have become distracted by looking off course. My path may be judged or mocked, ridiculed our shamed but it is my journey and I will be joyful in the pursuit of fulfilling my destiny in Jesus name.
My prayer over each of you is that God give you the strength to endure everything on your path, that he shed his grace over your journey, that you reap the benefits of staying humble and maintain a joyful spirit while celebrating other’s gifts.
Your lane, life, gift and being are significant to this world-let your let shine!!!!