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five minute friday

What Might We Really Need?

write-4Each Friday, the Five Minute Friday community gets together online and writes for five minutes. Timed and unedited we write, then post. I strive to participate each week, whether I post here or on Instagram. At times, these writing sessions bring more than five minutes of writing; but regardless of what it looks like for me as a writer, my hope is that for you it brings encouragement and direction as you seek to live a faith-filled and purposeful life.

prompt: need

defined:

  • (verb) to be under obligation; to require
  • (noun) a situation or time of difficulty; a lack of something necessary or required; a requirement, necessary duty, or obligation

go

To need something or someone can be a very humbling experience. So many of us desire to be independent, free of the constraints that come when we must rely on another person or device.

Yet, what if we did not view this as a constraint, but rather as the freeing thing it can be. Not that being reliant on another does not have its drawbacks. It can be frustrating and disappointing for, after all, we live in and among those that are failable creatures who do not always nor can always fulfill what we feel we need.

But what if we viewed our need of others, rather than a necessary evil or frustatig curse we must bare; but as a joy that we are able to allow them to assist us. We can be a source of encouragement as we allow others to aid us in the areas they are best equipped to do so. There is no one person who can do all things well.  There are those who are very skilled and can do a variety of things excellently, but I dare to say that if we really examined their life and saw into who they really are we would see that there is some area they do not excel. Some space in their life where they need another.

So needs may not be so much a curse but a blessing. Rather than a necessary burden, an opportunity for others to serve us.

stop

continuing on . . .

When I consider the reality of needs in light of cultivating a purposeful living, it becomes clear that, as we begin to cultivate life, we know what the needs are for that life. Like starting on a hike, one needs to know where the end of the path is. It may not need be clear, and it may alter a bit as one’s travels; but when beginning, is it not important to know where you are going?

So in cultivating life, one should have at least a rough idea of what that life is.

The most basic of life needs for us as humans is to connect and relate with God. He created us for that purpose, and the beginning of a life of eternal impact is begun here. Sustaining life is a very close second to our need of communion with God. We can not live without the basics of food, water, clothing, and shelter. To have this then dictates that we must work in a way that will help to supply those needs.

So often, this is where we stop. We get absorbed in what we are doing to meet our physical needs, even meeting those needs that really are not necessary. They are the extras of life that we have somehow tricked ourselves into thinking are needed.  Moving beyond our spiritual and physical needs, we have a need for community, mental growth, emotional health, and the capacity to contribute well to the people around us. Are these also, not needs? They may not be as screamingly obvious as our physical needs. And we can survive longer without meeting those needs, but they are very real part of our human existence. If we neglect them long enough our lives become merely a survival and not the thriving existence we were designed to have.

So what are your needs? The ones you know you are a better version of yourself when fulfilled? Consider what your survival needs are, and then add in the thriving needs. Maybe find what aspect of a thriving life (a faith-filled, purposeful life) may need some cultivating.

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Write31Days

Give: A bit of What I Have Found

The theme of cultivate, my One Word for this year, is woven throughout the days of writing this month. I am focusing on several areas of life that have been my focus for cultivating this year. I am not doing things perfectly, but I am learning as I go and would love to share some of it with you.

Prompts provided by Five Minute Fridays are my springboard for each days writing. You can see the complete listing and links to the posts I have written so far on my 2017 Write 31 Days landing page. 

give

A large part of cultivating growth in your life, is taking the time to learn. Whether by listening, reading, or studying – growth happens as we make time and space in our lives to take in information and see how it might help us cultivate the life we desire to have. The best part of this process, is then being able to turn and give the resource or knowledge to someone else.

In the spirit of give – here are some of my resources for growth cultivation from across the web:

Webinar/Classes

Books

  • Make It Happen and Cultivate by Lara Casey. Her second book is still on my TBR shelf, but Make It Happen was excellent. Lara has gone through some life seasons that have refocused her on cultivating life and I am eager to see how this comes out in her second book.
  • Let’s All Be Brave by Annie F. Downs is not one that I particularly would recommend as a growth book, but it came to mind as I was writing this week, and I have learned not to ignore those prompts when they come. This is a partly Annie’s story but also a great resource for growing in the confidence of what it is you know you are to do.

Websites/Newsletters

  • Having a group that will encourage you and challenge you in your spiritual life is one of the best resources for growing in your God-centered faith. Some of the groups I have participated in and used over the last several years are Love God Greatly, Proverbs31 Ministries, and most recently I am working with ladies in my church in leading a study group online.
  • Emily P. Freeman is one of my best resources for growth. She is seeking to grow herself and shares about it all in a honest and encouraging way. Her growth manifests itself in her podcast, books, blog and writing community.  The value of finding someone who is seeking what you are seeking and sharing about how to do it well, is unmeasurable. I have recently realized that for me, Emily is one of those people.  She may not be your best resource – but I encourage you to find someone who is doing what you love to do, doing it well – just like, I realize, I have.

This obviously, is not a comprehnsive list. Rather I hope it is a starting place for you to begin cultivating your own list of growth resources. And as you collect resources for your own growth, don’t forget to me generous and share them with those around you – give.

This post is a part of the Write 31 Days Challenge for 2017. Each October writers around the world, take up the challenge to write and share their writing each day for the month of October. The theme for my writing this year is Cultivate. Following the prompts provided by the Five Minute Friday community, my goal is to write and post each day. Check out my 2017 Write 31 Days landing page for a list of all the prompts I’ll be following and links to each days post. 

If you would like to receive an email each day I post or subscribe to my seasonal newsletter, let me know your email here. 

Write31Days

Discover

The theme of cultivate, my One Word for this year, is woven throughout the days of writing this month. I am focusing on several areas of life that have been my focus for cultivating this year. I am not doing things perfectly, but I am learning as I go and would love to share some of it with you.

Prompts provided by Five Minute Fridays are my springboard for each days writing. You can see the complete listing and links to the posts I have written so far on my 2017 Write 31 Days landing page. 

discover

discoverIn seeking to grow, to cultivate a life that fulfills a purpose, one needs to be willing to discover, to set out on a journey, searching, at times wandering.

This journey can take different forms. How you search can be as varied as the roles you fill and can switch as often as you switch between those roles. To discover the why behind what you are working towards, you may need to be willing to ask questions, to sit in the silent of those questions unanswered, or even, to not know for sure what the questions are.

In seeking to discover purpose, I find it easy to mystify the concept of one’s purpose. In making it seem like a grand adventure to discover our purpose, we make this process seem a bigger deal than it really may be. Yes, there is the big picture ideas of one’s life to consider. The big ideas that help to dictate and decide what we are to work on this week, this month. Yet, in looking for the big picture, do we fail to see the next thing – the one right in front of us? Do we look out on the horizon so hard, seeking to discover the grand scheme of it all, that we fail to discover the next hill in front of us that we need to climb? The next meal we need to fix for our family? The next note we are to send to encourage our friend? The next prayer we are to pray?

I am not saying to neglect the big picture thinking for the everyday ins and outs. Rather our life should be a unique to us combination of discovering that which is the large purpose of our life and covering the joys of doing the next thing that is in front of us.

The rather cliche saying has it about right – take one step at a time. Consider what it is you know you are to do. Purpose may not be some grand scheme, flashing lights, or widely acclaimed impact. Purpose may be simply feeding your family, doing your job so you can pay your bills, studying for tomorrow’s exam, or talking with your neighbor. Tend to what you see in front of you regardless of its size, and in the tending, you may just discover your purpose.

This post is a part of the Write 31 Days Challenge for 2017. Each October writers around the world, take up the challenge to write and share their writing each day for the month of October. The theme for my writing this year is Cultivate. Following the prompts provided by the Five Minute Friday community, my goal is to write and post each day. Check out my 2017 Write 31 Days landing page for a list of all the prompts I’ll be following and links to each days post. 

If you would like to receive an email each day I post or subscribe to my seasonal newsletter, let me know your email here. 

Write31Days

Brave

The theme of cultivate, my One Word for this year, is woven throughout the days of writing this month. I am focusing on several areas of life that have been my focus for cultivating this year. I am not doing things perfectly, but I am learning as I go and would love to share some of it with you.

Prompts provided by Five Minute Fridays are my springboard for each days writing. You can see the complete listing and links to the posts I have written so far on my 2017 Write 31 Days landing page. 

brave

To be brave, to act brave.

braveTo be able to be brave it helps to understand the motivation for what you are doing. Having confidence can be crucial to being brave when the time is needed for bravery. As I consider times in my life when I felt the most in brave, they are times when I knew that what I was doing was the right thing for me to do. I was confident.

I see in those moments, I had faith in what I was doing. Faith that God was leading me to be there and faith He would sustain and meet the needs that were present in that moment.

Bravery then may not be so much a particular action, but rather a confidence. The confidence of the right thing to do. Faith that God sustains and directs. And simply obedience in the next right thing we are to do, say, or write. To be brave to go when you were really want to stay, to be still when you really want to move, to talk when silence would be more comfortable, to be quiet when your heart wants to yell, to give, to receive, to maybe do nothing.

I encourage you – move in confidence, in faith, and see how your simple actions of obedience are demonstrations of bravery.

This post is a part of the Write 31 Days Challenge for 2017. Each October writers around the world, take up the challenge to write and share their writing each day for the month of October. The theme for my writing this year is Cultivate. Following the prompts provided by the Five Minute Friday community, my goal is to write and post each day. Check out my 2017 Write 31 Days landing page for a list of all the prompts I’ll be following and links to each days post. 

If you would like to receive an email each day I post or subscribe to my seasonal newsletter, let me know your email here. 

Write31Days

Share: The Burdens and the Joys

The theme of cultivate, my One Word for this year, is woven throughout the days of writing this month. I am focusing on several areas of life that have been my focus for cultivating this year. I am not doing things perfectly, but I am learning as I go and would love to share some of it with you.

Prompts provided by Five Minute Fridays are my springboard for each days writing. You can see the complete listing and links to the posts I have written so far on my 2017 Write 31 Days landing page. 

share

To share one’s life with someone else is an exciting and scary journey.  Dealing with the in’s and out’s of your own life at times can seem much, but when you share life with some else, to a degree you take on the in’s and out’s of their life as well. This can be overwhelming.

shareSo often in our communities, we look at sharing in light of sharing the burdens of those around us. We are to help, encourage, pray, and serve. These are all true – but these good things are simply one side of sharing. To share with another also means we celebrate, enjoy, and join the fun of their life. To see the fulfillment of prayers prayed, the joy of a burden lifted, and the privilege of being able to aid our fellow life travelers are also part of sharing life.

True, taking on the share of life means time and energy spent for another. This is time and energy away from yourself and your immediate world. But, is that not what life is? giving of ourselves for the good and benefit of those around us? Maybe this is my abundance mentality showing through, the idea that we have enough of what we really need and we are to live looking to aid and benefit those around us. Does this mean we give to our own detriment – at times maybe, though I would argue this ought not to be the norm. And I am definitely not promoting the idea of caring so much for others that we neglect ourselves and those closest to us. But neither are we to care so much for ourselves, that we fail to look up and see how we can share with those around us, those outside of the walls of our immediate life.

Take the time to know your way, do the things that enable to you walk in that purpose, and remember to share in the lives around you. Yes, there will be some extra burdens. Yet, remember, the joys are multiplied as well!

This post is a part of the Write 31 Days Challenge for 2017. Each October writers around the world, take up the challenge to write and share their writing each day for the month of October. The theme for my writing this year is Cultivate. Following the prompts provided by the Five Minute Friday community, my goal is to write and post each day. Check out my 2017 Write 31 Days landing page for a list of all the prompts I’ll be following and links to each days post. 

If you would like to receive an email each day I post or subscribe to my seasonal newsletter, let me know your email here.