As I journaled one day about the lessons God has offered me thus far in life, this is what came to me. Perhaps you’ve learned these along your journey as well. Sometimes in the hectic pace of life, we need a reminder, and that is what I am here to offer you today:
1. Nothing Is Permanent.
I first learned this lesson at six years old, which was the first time my family moved. We left my birthplace of Florida and moved to Germany. I moved eight times by the age of 21 – to cities in Colorado, South Carolina, California, back to Florida, and later to Texas. Growing up in an Air Force family, I quickly learned to adapt to new circumstances, new people, and sometimes even a new country.
Nothing in life is permanent – a fact that should encourage you to revel in the joy your life brings, and minimize your frustration when you encounter circumstances you don’t like. There is something in your life right now that is not permanent. If it is something you love, in what way can you embrace and enjoy it more? If it’s something you dread, just hold on a little longer. This too shall pass.
2. You are Either Living on Purpose or Living by Accident.
Too many people wander through life haphazardly – latching on to people, jobs, and things just because they crossed their path. Then they wake up one day wondering, “How on earth did I get here?” I call it “living by accident.” In order to create a fulfilling life, you have to be purposeful in your decisions.
Don’t make your decisions without reflecting on how your decision will impact you long-term. Pursue the things that empower you to express your values and talents. Choose to be around people you feel good being around – inspiring, supportive people who are moving in the same direction as you. Know your purpose, and live in it every day in your work, relationships, health, finances, and spiritual life. In what way do you need to begin living more on purpose?
3. Fear Does Not Necessarily Mean ‘Stop’.
Fear is as powerful as you allow it to be. Most of us feel fear and interpret that feeling as a warning to stop moving forward. In truth, we should interpret most fear as a natural emotion that pops up every time we venture to do something outside of our comfort zone.
When you feel fear, keep moving. It’ll stretch you beyond your comfort zone and closer to your goals. What are you afraid of right now that is keeping you from your best life? Will you make a decision to move forward despite your fear?
4. Less is More.
More than ever, our culture is fixated on proving your worth through your money and material possessions. Entire televisions shows are dedicated to showing you all the stuff other people have. After a while, it can be pretty challenging not to compare your “stuff” to everyone else’s.
True self-empowerment comes from knowing that nothing material will ever prove your worth. Your worth comes from who you are – a child of God – and the impact you make in the lives of others. Don’t worry about impressing everyone else. Instead, focus on impressing God by living the purpose for which He created you: Serving and blessing others in a way that only you can.
5. The Power to Change Your Life is in the Choices You Make.
This is perhaps the most powerful of lessons. Better choices create better circumstances. It’s not what happens to you that most impacts your life. It is how you respond. Your choices create your future. What kind of future are you creating with the choices you are making today?
You can choose to enjoy your life or to be miserable. You can choose to be flexible or keep hitting a brick wall at work or in a relationship. You can choose to pursue your dreams or keep making excuses for why you can’t achieve them. The choice is ours. What new choice do you need to make in your life?
My challenge to you:
From the list of five lessons above or the list you created when you journaled, choose the one that you most need to apply to your life right now. Make a decision to take an action in the next 48 hours that will enrich your life in a meaningful way.
What is the most important lesson your life is offering you right now? How will you apply this lesson in your future? Leave your comments below, I’d love to hear from you!