I have sat on the idea of this blog for over a year now. I didn’t want to put myself out there. This was not the story I had thought I would tell with my life. Certainly not the story I would have chosen. I didn’t want the cancer, that took my life into a dramatic detour, to define me. It still doesn’t define me. But it is part of my story.
In the midst of this chapter, my prayer became this,
“Lord, use this for your Glory. Give this story purpose. If not, I can’t do this.”
I have put off writing this blog. I felt like Moses. I am not skilled in this. Find someone else. But in a recent sermon series at church called, “Stretch Marks”, I could not ignore the prompting to share my “one story”. My story. To help me to see the strength of my story. To help others to see the strength in sharing their story. It takes our stories out of the scary place where we hide and gives them purpose. It encourages others to see that they are not alone. It helps us to see others’ stories in a new light.
I was trained in strengths coaching a few years ago and have come to appreciate my strengths and those of others. Strengths has been a fun way to put our stories into perspective. Even in the most challenging of circumstances.
Empathy, Connectedness, Developer, Belief and Adaptability
At times my empathy for the feelings and reactions of others has shattered my heart. But I have also found that I could relate easily to other’s struggles and encourage friends through my developer strength to see the hope and purpose in their stories.
The strength of connectedness and belief have helped me to see the bigger picture, that God has a plan and that none of this is a surprise to Him. That He has equipped us for this time and we trust that He will prepare for what lies ahead. My sense of seeing all of our stories as connected in some great and meaningful way compels me to see that our stories must be shared.
Through this blog you will hear many voices and different stories. My prayer is that this will be a safe place to share and encourage one another, through story. I am excited to introduce you to many dear friends who have generously shared the beautiful strengths in their stories. Parts of my story will also be told through some in my life that I trust to tell it well. It is my hope that you can pull up a chair and sit with us a while. That you will be inspired and moved by the stories of others and see greater value in your own.