#FiftyToFiftyWMR: 49-Peace is better than being right. (To Be Continued)
Although it’s a little late in the evening, I am determined for the next 50 days to share a lesson I have learned over the last ummm… almost 50 years. I don’t claim to be the “All Wise Wendy!” I don’t claim to know all the answers of life. That is not what this about. SO why do it? Because I want to share, dang it! Haha! It is simply about sharing.
As I went through my decades of journals, I started taking notes on the lessons I learned. They weren’t always easy lessons. Many times I suffered heartbreak before I learned my lesson. I might not have seen any good coming out of some circumstances back in the day, but I can see it now. I found myself saying, “Awww, that’s why I had to go through “that” particular thing.” “That’s why that friendship had to end.” That’s why I didn’t need that guy in my life.” “That’s why my inner circle is small. “That’s why I had to go to Michigan State University.” “That’s why that project failed the first three times.” “Ohhh, I never thought I’d get through that.” “Oh, now that was too funny!” “That’s why I got stuck.” “That’s why…”
I can look back at some of my most happiest of times as well as some of the lowest moments and see how I was changed- see how I stumbled- see how I grew. Life. Sometimes I just shake my head.
Often times the real issue is not what we are going through, but what we are coming to and how our life’s lessons can prepare us to stand in amazing places- equipped and fortified- stand in places we never thought possible and how we can help strengthen someone else, if only we share when the opportunity calls for us to do so.
People need to know that we live real lives with real issues- that everything is not always perfect and that’s okay. It validates their struggles, their pain and their ability to overcome whatever they are dealing with.
Life is full of fake people who act as if they don’t have a problem in the world- people who would have you believe that they’ve been good all their lives. Those types of people rarely help anyone. In fact, they hinder.
Years ago, one of my closet friends told me she left church because she didn’t belong. Everybody there appeared perfect and her life was a mess. She felt that she could never lived up to their standards. She felt shunned by the folks she tried to befriend. She wasn’t “Churched”. She lacked discipline. She lived her life any way the wind blew. In addition, she partied on some Saturdays. She struggled with drinking every now and then, she was sleeping with her boyfriend and at times she was known to let out a curse word or two. She wanted to make some changes in her life. She tried church. If one person would have connected with her and been honest with her- If one person would have said, “Girl, I know. I’ve been there. Let me tell you my story. Let me tell you how I made it through.” It would have made a huge difference. She might not have struggled as long as she did.
So, I’ve learned to listen and to share when appropriate. Why? Because it is helpful and good for the soul.
I know this first post wasn’t perfect but guess what? Right, I’m not perfect. Truth be told, on day fifty, I’m a little under the weather and struggling to even type- but I’m here. I’m determined to get it started. I’ll see you tomorrow.
I am a living witness that often times you wrestle in the area of your gifting. I am an encourager, a counselor, a communicator. I’m passionate about helping others see their gifts, their impact and be introduced to the “them” they haven’t met yet. Over the course of decades, I have literally sat with, listened to, and talked with thousands of people- heard thousands of stories as to why they think they can’t accomplish or be something. I’ve watched them take that dreaded first step into new directions that ultimately changed their lives and their world around them. Whether it was a homeless client, a disgruntle employee, a pastor who needed refueling, kids that didn’t understand why their parents can’t be happy together, CEO’s struggling with secret addictions, a young person, not even of voting age, being told to pick out the day she wanted to die and how she wanted to spend her last days because her heart would fail and she was not eligible for a new one, a spouse seeking affection outside of marriage, a kid trying to get off drugs, a university student still being raped by her dad when she returns home on the weekend… I’m telling you, I’ve almost heard it all. I’ve seen the tears, the breakdowns, the anger, the confusion, the emptiness that most people don’t want you to see. I’ve kept their confidence as they shared their secrets, their struggles, their hopes, their dreams…
I tried to provide a safe place for others while often failing to create one for myself. I’m human. I have at times wrestled to stay encouraged. I wrestled with pursuing my dreams. I’ve wrestle with wondering if my life is making an impact. I have bottled up my feelings at times. I have wrestled with the expectations of others or with folks whom I love not “getting” me or seeing my value. And just like I had to do today, I’ve had to remind myself that God is my safe place. I can share my heart with Him at any time. When I close my eyes in meditation, I remind myself that there is nothing I have to “do” or “become” that would make me more beloved, protected, favored and valued than I am right now by the Father above. He just loves me for who I am- the me He created. Therfore, I’m allowing me to be who I am- loving me for who I am. Creating that safe environment for myself- Treating myself better than anyone else could possibly treat me- Releasing myself to flow in my gifts- Keeping good people in my circle-Helping others and allowing God to reveal me in any way He chooses.
What about you? Where is your safe place? How well do you take care of yourself? Are you stuck in the struggles or are you anchored to hope? Are you wrestling with becoming or have you found the grace and power of being? Just some off the cuff thoughts today.
Welcome to 2016 (Sweet ’16)! May it is filled with peace, restoration, fulfillment, amazing people, positive increase, laughter and great transformation! I hope we have shaken off doubt, fear, insecurity, other people’s definitions, other people’s expectations, discouragement, disappointment and all things unhealthy and negative. My prayer for us is that we dare to really live- not just because we are in a new year, but simply because it is time!
This is my first Blog of the New Year and I plan on being more consistent. This is not a new resolution. I have just rediscovered the purpose and passion for it. With the exception of my commitment and responsibility to Beauty Come Forth Magazine, I’ve written sporadically (publicly) throughout the last year. As I encountered life, I found myself in unfamiliar territory and uncharted waters. It was challenging to do a lot of public writing as I navigated through it all. Finding a clear pathway in the midst of storms and transition took a lot of energy, especially when I was Wendy led.
Writing is about truth to me and I might have been a little uneasy at sharing my truths. Perhaps I was in a place where I was trying to figure out my truths. You see I am forever learning, growing, adjusting… And trust me I have learned, grown, adjusted… a lot over the last couple of years. While the foundation of my faith and belief system has not changed, the way I view the world (or at least parts of it) has. But isn’t that true for us all? Very few of us view life the same way we did as a kid (or even 5 years ago). As we grow, as we encounter life, we adjust.
Anyway, whatever I have been through- the good, the difficult… whatever I’ve endured- the gains, the losses- everything has brought me here- to this place in my life- a good place- an amazing place… a place where I am whole, strengthened, stablished, and settled… a place where I have reached a new appreciation and need for God’s love, His mercy and His grace… a place where there is only room for authentic friendships that sharpen, prioritize and celebrate me and I them… a place where I understand that I have the ability and the responsibility to make a difference- an impact… a place where I am truly ready to live out and celebrate the fullness of who I am. I pray the lessons I’ve learned (and those I will learn along the way), as well as the words I write and share with you during this year and beyond, will reflect that as well as encourage and challenge you on your journey.
So, are we ready? You bet we are! Sweeeeeeet! Let’s go make an impact!
To say that this has been an interesting month would be putting it mildly. Lots of things to celebrate (my birthday, my Dad’s 85th birthday, friend’s accomplishments, the Magazine’s 6th anniversary…) and there’s stuff going on that’ll make you want to cry. I want to challenge you (and me) to go ahead and find a way to laugh today. Dig down deep and find a stream of joy. See, If the enemy can rob us of our joy, he will rob us of our strength. The joy of the Lord IS our strength and in His presence, there is fullness of joy… fullness of strength! His strength, that joy, and His love and faithfulness will get us through the toughest moments and propel us into peace and manifested victory.
Listen, it doesn’t matter what things looks like, It doesn’t matter what the enemy says. It doesn’t matter what it feels like or what you feel is going to happen. God will prevail & we must stay positioned, stay prepared and seize the opportunity for victory. I didn’t just get that from the dramatic victories experienced by the MSU Spartan’s and the Detroit Lion’s this past weekend- although they did serve as a reminder. But I got it because it seems like every time I turn around, the enemy is throwing low blows, challenging my faith- my belief- perverting the truth, attacking those closest to my heart. I have to keep reminding myself that I’m the champion! Me! Neither the harassment of the enemy nor my feelings or circumstances determine outcomes. Although the enemy looks like he is winning, he doesn’t get to determine my position, my stance, my countenance, my moves and he does not get to win– Period. I am fully prepared, fully trained, fully equipped to win- even against the odds. I know that at any second, on any day, an opportunity for God to show out in my life is going to show up! Spectacular! Impactful! Game changing! I’m ready for it. I’m looking for it. I’ve trained for it. I’m prepared for it! Don’t play with me today!
When you are challenged, when you’ve had the wind knocked out of you, when it hurts to breathe- breathe you must. You were given this life because you, whether you feel like it or not- whether you choose to believe it or not, are strong enough to live it! Know that! Know the truth. The enemy is afraid- afraid you’ll finally get unleashed- afraid that the real ‘God-designed’ you will emerge. he is afraid of your power, your influence, your impact- afraid you’ll wake up and declare God’s word- afraid you’ll see that you (with God) are so much stronger, more powerful, more amazing, more creative, more inspiring, more equipped,… than he is! That is why he comes at you- at your family and the people and things closest to your heart- to distract you from truth and to make you lose your hope, your passion and your effectiveness. Ugh! he does not get to win!
So hey, don’t you quit! Don’t you give up! Don’t you buckle under the pressure or the pain. Know and stand on the word of God! Don’t you expect or accept defeat. Don’t question your ability! Don’t you give up on what God said- on what He promised! Even if it looks like you’re losing, you’re not. Even if it seems as if the Word isn’t working, it is. Even if it appears there isn’t enough time for a comeback, there is. Even if it looks like there is just no way, there is a way. Even if everyone has counted you out… you’re all up in the mix. Positioned. Equipped. Prepared. Mentally tough. Fortified. Expectant. Look for the opportunity to win. Here it comes. 10, 9, 8… Manifested Victory!
Don’t you play with me today.