A voice in the darkness

Ever felt like you are stuck in a dark place? Then this post is written just for you….

Gods first words in the human story were words spoke in the darkness – words from the darkness. Spoken by God. Spoken to breathe life into the darkness.

Out of the darkness these words were uttered:

“Let… there… be… light!”

And there was light. The first light in the universe came from the voice of God in the darkness. Gods first breathe in the universe created light.

This was the beginning. The first beginning. The first of many beginnings. This is the work of God in our lives. God enters into the darkness, unperturbed or disturbed, to bring light, growth, love, joy, peace that surpasses understanding, and all other manner of blessings as he wills.

Whenever God wants us to grow he leads us into the darkness where we are led by the spirit into the place of deepening faith and holy trust. And into our darkness He speaks ever so gently… let there be light, and Christ enters our darkness. He walks in it with us to lead us through the dark wilderness into his promised land for our lives.

Where there is darkness today God is already at work. New life will spring up at the sound of his gentle voice. Do not listen for a booming voice in the darkness. Look for the still small voice of the Spirit speaking and breathing the new life of God. God is speaking light into your darkness.

Be an encourager

There’s a guy in the bible called BARNABAS – he had a great reputation. Why? Because he was a great encourager.

To encourage someone us to give them strength and courage. It is to lift them up.

How can we encourage those around us?

Here’s three ideas:

1. Pray for them

2. Help them practically

3. Give them your time and positive words

What are some other ways can we be great encouragers?

How I recently handled a big Disappointment

I recently had a major upset and disappointment in my career journey. I decided early on that I would not let it define me, but rather I would embrace the situation and navigate through it with my head held high, and my eyes on a more positive journey. I have listed some of the things that helped me. What would you add to the list, and what resonates with you?

1. When knocked down – Get up again every time!

2. Be positive – negativity helps no one!

3. Surround yourself with support – listen to those who say you can!

4. Believe in yourself – it helps those around you to believe in you!

5. Remember failure is not the end – it’s part of the journey of life

6. Learn from failure – but move on from it!

7. Keep on keeping on – your perseverance will be worth the effort

8. Be positive – negativity helps no one! 😉

9. Take advice – and filter it down to what helps

10. Accept help – the world is full of amazing, gifted people who can give you strength

11. Don’t be an egotist – remember we still need to look out for those around us

12. Identify your purpose – and move in that direction

13. Have faith.

14. Write down every idea you have – act on as many as you are able

What would you add to the list and what resonates with you?

Mindful Reflection

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It’s that day of the year again: you know the one where we think back and look forward?!

Reflecting back is great, and helpful, and we ought to do it more. Looking back is NOT about living in the past – it IS about learning from the past in order to move forward today.

As we reflect on this year, what learning can we share with others for the coming year?

Happy New Year

Stuart

I have a dream you can’t let go of

I woke up this morning with Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech in my head.

What would’ve happened if Dr King had not pursued the dream?

What would’ve happened if he listened to those around him who said ‘its too big a dream to achieve’?

What would’ve happened if He just stayed silent?

I’ll tell you what would’ve happened:

Equality today would look less equal!

Humanity would feel less human!

Dr King would have lived an ordinary life.

Why settle for ordinary when you can live your dream? Whatever the dream, if it benefits others – hold it, live it, and word to make it a reality.

014 Knowing your purpose is a key to living in joy

Maksud wanders as if blown by the wind, from one experience to the next. Her mind always drawn by the desires of childhood hidden deep within her soul. She pushes them down and carries on. Recalling them cuts her heart and causes regret to spill like blood around her mind. But those dreams and those desires still linger, as if they have a life of their own, longing and striving to break free. 

Purpose

It was eight years ago when I met with Paul. Paul was helping me to understand myself better in order to support me in making some choice changes to what my career looked like. At the end of the process he gave me a warning: make sure you choose roles that fit your sense of purpose. His reason was this: when you do not live out your purpose something within you either dies or struggles to get out

I believe firmly that we are all made for a purpose. Deep within each of us there are dreams and desires related to purpose that we need to be living. I don’t mean the desire for another human being. I don’t mean the desire to go on holiday to Italy.

The desires we are talking about are a deep rooted sense of why we are here.

Many of us lose these early on. As a youth worker in my former life I observed young people losing their dreams and hope. Each year older they get, the more serious they become about ‘real’ careers and ambitions. Each year natural thinking and creativity gets reduced until it becomes nothing more than a distant memory. Each year older we get the deeper our true selves can be buried in the mess of just getting through the days – can you relate to this?

Children have no problem saying when I get older I’m gonna be an astronaut, ballerina and record-breaking banana eater!!! As we get older we are less likely to share our deep dreams with others – this is a truth that swirls the sadness within me – we were made to dream, dare and do according to our sense of deep purpose. Mark Twain says the following:

Mark Twain

There’s a nugget of golden truth in this statement: it implies that we must dig out our purpose. We must endeavour to work our purpose out. I believe this is one of our key tasks of life: we are to find our purpose and to live it out

we are to find our purpose and to live it out

Yet many of us are just like Maksud: we wander through life wrestling with the thought that our dreams and desires are childish and foolish, but we cannot escape from them. We have negative voices in our heads telling us we could never do that thing we dream of. So we bury our desires. We walk through life according to someone else’s plans and expectations. We often also walk through life with the cacophonous noise of our critics (inner and actual) clanging in our minds – you may need to silence your critics to follow your purpose and seek out joy in life.

It is time to break free from the drudge that hinders and holds you back from the hope and joy of living your purpose! It’s time to dream. It’s time to step up and move forward.

How do I know this?

Because it is always time to start doing the right thing, and finding your purpose is definitely the right thing!

The word Maksud is Indonesian and means purpose, intent, point, intention, view, meaning.

Purpose requires us to intentionally find it. It gives us meaning and intention to our lives and it opens up that well of joy within you. Seek out your purpose.

When I began exploring why I am on this beautiful planet and then living on purpose it released me to be who I am. It releases joy within us and that keeps us persevering and moving forward even when it’s difficult.

I realised a few years ago that my overarching purpose is Inspiring others to learn from life through teaching, speaking and writing. I don’t need to be famous or rich to do this. I can do it in my everyday job. I can do it in conversations, blogs, Facebook posts, etc.

Your purpose may be something that integrates well with the life you live already – it’s not always a cataclysmic change (although for some it will be).

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What one thing  can you do this week to uncover your purpose? Leave a comment to cement that thought? Or write it in your journal, phone, or task list.

Have you got ideas on how other readers can uncover their purpose? – please leave some comments and encourage others to boldly go into a life of purpose and joy. Purpose releases life and hope within us. It dwells beside the well of joy I mentioned in a previous post.

I hope that you will rediscover and share your sense of purpose regardless of how old or young you are.

May you dare to dream and live according to your personal purpose today and every day with passion, and hope

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