Did you ever find it easier to encourage others in their God-given dreams, but find it hard to encourage yourself?
“One of the biggest challenges we have as women is assigning importance to our dreams — those desires God has planted in our heart.” ~ Kathi Lipp, in The Me Project
I had just given birth to my second child, when exhausted and completely drained of any creativity, I switched into “work mode”. I get into this zone when things need to get done. If others are depending on me, I somehow dig deep and can pull rabbits out of hats.
It’s a different story when it comes to taking care of my own needs. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy keeping healthy, unplugging with friends and taking off for my spiritual whitespace. I’m not into neglecting myself (a hot cup of coffee and pastry can do miracles on a cloudy day!).
But, if I hear words like “pursuing your dream”, a defense shield goes up.
I’ve taken the road before to pursue dreams and hopes that were God-given. My plans, even though stepped out in faith and guided by God’s presence, went off script. They did not turn out the way I expected.
I love getting a dose of Kathi’s humor, as she delivers her practical, real-life application of Biblical principles in her “marriage” and “hubby” books. She’s the easy-going girlfriend who’ll talk straight with you, with a loving heart of grace.
But, I instinctively shied away from the word “Me”. My reaction showed me I was eager-beaver if it came to investing in my marriage and husband. But, when it comes to spotlighting my own passions, I was reluctant.
As I worked my way through Kathi’s book, I found insight into my “Me” hesitation. Through Kathi’s own journey to value God’s gift of encouragement and writing — through a broken marriage and then a new one — I realized Kathi wasn’t writing about reaching a guaranteed outcome.
Kathi was exploring the hearts of women who are ready to take a chance on a God-given desire. She offered encouraging inspiration on what can hold us back and move us forward.
Being faithful to step out in faith — that was something I could use encouragement in.
Stepping Out Season?
If you feel God may be leading you into a season to take steps of faith — to pursue a dream He’s placed on your heart — you have a chance today to win a copy of Kathi’s new book: The Me Project.
Here are some gems of encouragement from Kathi’s book, for the God-sized dreams in you:
“If God is telling you to wait on part or all of your goal,
figure out what you can do in the meantime.”
“Check in with God with some concentrated prayer and meditation…
get quiet with God and listen for His direction for your goal.”
“If you are feeling overwhelmed in taking even small steps…
I want you to look at some of the strengthening areas of your life and check to make sure that you are taking good care of yourself.”
~ Kathi Lipp
Finally, I want to offer up a Scripture that has pulled me up, out of the dirt of critical voices. You know, the voices that say, “You’re not good enough.” or “It’s too late for you.”
Although the Apostle Paul is talking to young Timothy about his gift of teaching God’s word, there is encouragement for those of us starting new. God has put different gifts in each of us that He wants us to bless each other with.
I’ve walked through enough seasons of faith to know that plans still may not turn out the way we expect. The great thing about faith is this: we will always win Jesus through every step of the way. I think that is the secret that frees us to lay all aside and take risks.
We have the reward of Jesus — and He’s given us the joy of investing Himself in us.
“For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving…
And don’t let anyone put you down because you’re young (Aren’t we all young in starting new?)
… Do not neglect your gift.”
1 Timothy 4:1, 11-14 (parenthesis mine)
How is God asking you to invest in nurturing His gift in you?
Do you find it hard to invest time and energy in your interests and passions?
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