One year ago this week, I attended the life-changing, inspirational Storyline Conference. This year’s conference is going on right now in Chicago. When I attended last year, I was approximately 2 months into my brand new journey as an empty nester and signed up for the conference as the first brave step into my next chapter. One of the speakers talked about a time in her life when she felt God had “invited” her to make a change, to do it differently, to consider another path, to step out of her comfort zone. I was intrigued by this idea of an invitation from God, as if He was inviting us each to a very special party called life. An invitation by definition offers a choice. It is not an order, but an opportunity to participate and an affirmation of affection.
At the end of the week, in an effort to crystallize the message I had heard and the ways in which my heart had been stirred, I began to play with this idea of invitation. I published this on my blog last year and shared it with my Being Brave retreat participants a few weeks ago. I think the invitation is still open.
Could this perhaps be the invitation that God is offering to each one of us today?
Will you RSVP yes?
My Beloved Child-
Your voice matters. I made you in such a way that no one else has been or will ever be just like you. You are unique and, like all my children, that makes you special. You already have everything you need to live a great big life full of adventure, love, sacrifice, meaning and purpose.
You don’t need anything else to be ready. Someday is a myth. No one is ever ready. Everything you have experienced, suffered and learned up to this point is all part of the masterpiece we are making together. I gave you gifts and passions that only you can use to make the world a better place. Don’t waste these gifts I have given you on a small, safe, comfortable life. I have never once told my children to play it safe.
Don’t let the voices of doubt, fear or shame keep you paralyzed. They are lies. You will make mistakes, but I will be there with you every step of the way. Dream big and love big, living right on the edge of Yikes!
Share what I have given you with others. Tell people about the Kingdom. Try something new and, if you fail, don’t be afraid to try again. Love people that are hard to love and listen to them. Be real, authentic and vulnerable. People will still love you, even when you drop the act. If they don’t, bless them and walk away.
I see your heart and I know you love me too. We are in this together, so don’t be afraid. My plan for your life is for you to pursue your passions and use them to make the world a little better and remind people that they are loved. I’m not that concerned about the specific details as long as you live in grace and walk in love. Don’t wait. Work hard. Do YOUR thing with great LOVE right NOW. Let’s get started!
I love you- God