Guest Post by Jennifer Bennett
“For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.” – Proverbs 23:7
This past weekend, I had some “interesting” things take place that I just need to share with you!
First off, on Friday I was chatting on the phone with my good friend. As we were talking away, she mentioned to me that she had no idea that I was now teaching a college class one night a week. As I told her about the class, she said to me, “Gee whiz, just another thing about you to intimidate me.”
Now, before you think I’m saying this to impress each of you, hear me out, because the reality is, that’s the last thing I’m trying to do.
The other interesting thing happened on Saturday as my family and I headed out to Barnes and Noble. As I was in the store, I overheard this woman griping and complaining to one of the store workers about how this particular Barnes and Noble was the worst one she has ever been too. She continued going on by stating that the store had horrible customer service, they never carried any books she needed or wanted and that once again, it was the worst store ever. As she went on and on, the employee just listened while keeping her cool.
Trying to impress
And then it happened. As this women was continuing on, she said some specific words that quite frankly, got me a little upset. She first stated that she has traveled the world and in all her travels she has never been to such a horrible store as this one. And then she decided to throw in that she had a Ph.D and really, I think this is what did it to me and got me a little upset. At this point, I walked over and told the employee that I too was getting my Ph.D and that quite frankly, I thought she was doing a great job. Needless to say, the complaining woman just walked away while the worker was relieved that someone would stick up for her.
As I chatted to the employee, I mentioned that I couldn’t believe that this women would throw in there that she had a Ph.D; it was as if having a Ph.D made her better or “more special” than anyone else. And really, this is what blew me away.
By now you may be wondering what these two stories have to do with each other. Well, as I thought back to my conversation with my friend and then this incident that I witnessed, I couldn’t help but to wonder how many women today feel as though they are “less worthy” because they don’t have some extra letters behind their name, or they don’t have a certain “look”, house, car, accessories, family, career, etc.
Life isn’t a contest
Here is the God honest truth…God doesn’t care about that stuff! I truly believe that so many times we hold ourselves back because we feel as though we don’t have the right kind of education, experience, world travels, know how, contacts, etc. And what ends up happening is we never step out and fulfill the calling that has been placed on us. Instead, we spend our time comparing ourselves to these other women who we think have their lives all together (which in reality, many of them don’t).
Today, you need to know that life isn’t a contest. Life isn’t about who can one-up the other. It isn’t about who has the most degrees, the highest paying job, the biggest house, the luxury car, the name brand clothes, etc. The truth is, comparing yourself to others will only bring you hurt and disappointment. And when you find yourself living your life like this, the hard core truth is you will never fully become who you were meant to be.
What God cares about is the heart:
But God told Samuel, “Looks aren’t everything. Don’t be impressed with his looks and stature. I’ve already eliminated him. God judges persons differently than humans do. Men and women look at the face; God looks into the heart.” – 1 Samuel 16:7
The one thing I can tell you is that God has a unique calling on your life. It’s not going to look like anyone else’s. It most likely will not come at the same time it does for those that you know. It will look different, be different, smell different and taste different. Today, I want you to take joy in your unique calling; the unique road that God has you on. God wants to see you become your best, living life knowing that you are being and doing exactly what it is that He had planned for you long ago!
3 Tips for Stepping Into Your Greatness
So today, let me share a three specific tips that will help you step into your greatness, your unique calling that God is wanting to reveal to you! Choose today to stop comparing and instead, see yourself as the gem that you are!
1) Give yourself away: How can you give yourself away to someone this week? How can you give of your time to those who are in need? Who can you bless as you go along completing the tasks that are before you this week? Maybe someone is need of a home cooked meal. Or maybe, someone just needs a night out with their spouse…why not offer to watch their children? Nothing compares to the feeling you get when you allow yourself to reach out to someone. Be diligent about doing this.
2) Encourage someone: Each of us knows what a difference it makes when someone actually takes the time to encourage us! I remember being at church a couple of weeks ago and as I walked in with my family, one of the ladies looked at Luke (my husband) and said, “you have got a hottie for a wife.” Honestly, that made my day! I felt so good about myself. Just a few words and I was on cloud nine. Who can you encourage this week and in turn, put them on cloud nine?
3) Focus on your strengths, not your weaknesses. Do you know what your strengths are? Or do you spend most of your time focusing on those areas that you deem as being negative? Why not choose this week to focus on what your strengths are and what it is that makes you, you? If you are unsure as to what your strengths are here are a couple of suggestions for you:
-Purchase StrengthsFinder 2.0 and take the online assessment. This will be an eye opening experience for you!
-Seek out the thoughts of those that you respect and admire. Ask them to share with you (in person or via email) their responses to these questions:
- What makes me smile?
- What do you see my strengths being?
- What do I do well?
- What could I get lost in for hours?
Your unique calling
The truth is, you are a unique individual with a unique calling upon your life. Don’t waste your days comparing yourself to others or feeling as though you are “less” of a person because of the things you don’t have. Remember, God looks at the heart. Life is not a contest, but rather a race; you have been given a specific race to run. Focus on who God’s called you to be, your unique life story, and then give it all you’ve got!
I Believe in YOU!
Jennifer Bennett is not your typical “God Girl.” She not only believes that women were created to be successful, strong and courageous in a world that often asks them to “hang out in the background”, but she is a firm believer in a God that has a special place in His heart for women whom He longs to see impact this world in some BIG ways! As a “Marketer of Hope” expert who currently serves a variety of women, she encourages, inspires, and equips women to live the lives that they were meant for!
You can find out more about Jennifer at www.MySoulMission