“And He said to me, ‘My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.’ So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.” 2 Corinthians 12:19
On any given day, we can turn on our computers and see a surplus of inspirational quotes. Some speak to us, but the majority tend to get a quick glance and never a second thought. We become desensitized to the redundant, “You can do anything” posts, and the phrases lose their magic. What we don’t think about is the experiences that shaped the person who wrote the words. There are some truly poetic quotes that resonate with me. I can feel the intensity in the author’s words, and those words came at a price. Wisdom is not cheap. It comes at a painful, life altering cost.
There have been so many times in my life that I have said, “I just can’t do this anymore.” In those moments, I really didn’t think I was going to make it another day, but I did. So far, I have made it through 100% of those days. I learned to no longer say that I cannot do something, but instead say, “How am I going to fix this? What are my choices?” Giving up is not an option and even though I have felt like it at times, I never have. I am too much of a fighter to throw in the towel. I have made it this far, and I will continue to fight every single day, if that is what I have to do.
A change in attitude despite the circumstances, is the first step to a changed life. Our purpose in life is to inspire each other through our own aspirations, success stories, and philanthropy. Last Sunday, my pastor spoke on the uniqueness of our individual stories. He said that we need to tell people about the goodness of God and what we have overcome in our lives. This helps them get through their own struggles. His story will inspire some, but my story will inspire others. It is imperative that we draw out this drive in each other. Because without hope, what else is there?
During that same service, a young man shared his testimony and stated that God does NOT make mistakes. While this is not a new concept, the way he said it truly spoke to me. Whatever we are going through in our lives was designed for us. I know it doesn’t seem like the things we deal with could be used for good, but that’s exactly what they are intended for. We cannot stop terrible events from transpiring. We can only learn from them and try to help others through theirs. It is ingrained in us to want to help one another, and that was not a mistake either. God’s design is flawless, even though we are completely flawed.
Our lives constantly ebb and flow. In order to master the waves, we have to accept that they are coming whether we like it or not. We have to use our past experience to maneuver the currents, and we have to do it with as much grace as we can muster. It has taken me two decades of struggling to truly understand the depth of this concept and how to navigate these storms. I am sure will still fail at times when I get overwhelmed. I may lose my temper, and I may get mad at my situation, but I won’t be in that state for long THAT is the key. It is ok to cry about it, but you cannot stay in that mindset.
So how will you choose to inspire others? How will you use your storms to help others maneuver their rough waters? Give your pain a purpose, and share your experiences with others.