On my walk this morning I was inspired as I listened to a podcast. The speaker said that "God has a path for your life, and so do other people. Whose path are you going to trust in?"
No more than half a mile later I came to this fork in the road.
It made me smile.
I have traveled both paths in life, with and without God leading me. For the majority of my life I was living to please others. From the way I looked to the way I spoke, I wanted other people's approval. Yet this lead me down an anxious and depressed path because I never thought I was good enough - in any area of life. I kept trying to better myself. I was on a hamster wheel, spinning and spinning around and around never moving forward but was stuck in the dizzy cycle.
When I hit bottom with my anxiety and depression back in 2009, it was the first time I started looking up - at God. Being torn down to the studs gave me a chance to rebuild my life. I had a choice to build the same house on the shifting sand of other people's opinions or build my house on a solid foundation of faith, that when the storms in life came - such as cancer - I would have a strong foundation to stand on to handle its forceful impact.
I chose the latter.
Rather than living from the outside in, allowing people's opinions determine my path, I now live from the inside out, walking with God's love as my core. Knowing that who I am, inside and out, is enough in God's eyes has given me peace. Rather than being dizzy on the hamster wheel of other people's approval, now I walk forward, step by step, confident in Spirit, growing more and more into the person I was made to be.
I am so grateful for choosing to walk with God because that strong storm did come this year, and although a few shingles were loosened by the impact, the house remained standing on its firm foundation.
Rather than cancer tearing me down, it has renewed my Spirit to live a full life guided by God.
What does that mean?
As much as I thought I was living fully, I realized that I was still holding back. Having to look eye to eye with your mortality helps you realize that time is precious and I don't want to look back in the end with regret. We are here to use our God-given gifts to shine a light into the darkness of the world. When it is my time to go, I want to have emptied myself, knowing I have said or done what was mine to say and do, as a wife, mom, daughter, sister, friend, author, speaker, cancer survivor, etc.
And I encourage you to do the same; choose the path God has for you and give the world your gifts so at the end of your life, you will look back with gratitude and not regret.
I invite you to take a moment to ...
Pause. Breathe. Pray.
Ask yourself, are you living a life directed by the approval and/or opinions of others? Or are you living a life directed by God and using your God-given gifts that shine a light into this world that only you can?
What better time than today to begin walking with God and start putting YOUR gifts into practice. Shine your unique light of love into the world!
Take the path less traveled, the path with God, it is the path to lasting peace.
With love and hope,