Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Our Contribution

It has taken me years and years to finally feel, not only feel, but believe and accept that I have a worthy contribution to this world. For so long, especially since becoming a blogger a few years ago, I have been prone to look to her. I'm so tired of doing that, I'm exhausted at looking at her, her and her. Can I get an amen!? 

I want to look at me for once, and all I truly have to offer this world. I want to focus on what I can give, instead of what I can't. What I do have and not what I don't. What my gifts are and what they are not. There's plenty I don't have, plenty I'm not good at, but there is plenty that I am, plenty I do, and plenty that I'm good at. Are you still with me???

It's a challenge for us to look soley at ourselves when it comes to our giftings and what we can offer this world because let's face it, there are so many amazing, talented, beautiful women/people out there. We live in a imperfect perfect world, know what I mean? I mean really it's technically PERFECTLY IMPERFECT, but what we see is a different story. It's everywhere we look, not just blogs. It's TV, movies, billboards, magazines, all these fancy cookbooks with homemakers in pretty aprons, the hard-core women's lib movement with women finding their stand in the work place and kickin' butt, it's people winning this award and that award, and non-stop creativity and new inventions...the sky is the limit in today's world, and it can make us feel like we are a peon lost in a sea of amazingness and we aren't even coming close to the surface.

Living in today's world makes in nearly impossible for us to focus on the gifts that God gave us and ourselves and our talents and how we can "change the world" and what we can contribute. But it doesn't mean it can't happen.
Here are a few quotes I'd like to share on the matter:

"Comparison is a brutal attack on oneself." Cameron Diaz

Being immersed in the society that we are in makes this sort of thing really difficult, I think I've already ironed all that out. But it's not impossible because you can figure out how you can contribute. I mean I feel like I get lost in this sea of amazingness of other people, and I'm just a little peon, but then I think of all the other people that don't have a voice at all! There are some, a lot of people who live with oppression and not by any choice of their own, they are unable to contribute to the world in a way they long to. I at least, as small as it is, have a platform and the freedom to write and say what I want! I can share my stories, and give what I have to offer, some can't. 

So where is there a place for one like me? How can we conquer this once and for all? Well I really don't like that kind of lingo--so rather, how can we attempt to conquer this beast in our lives? How can we stop comparing ourselves to others and realizing that we all contribute in our own way?

1. We can accept that we have nothing to offer is a lie from the enemy. 
When I say the enemy, I mean that weird word, Satan. But it's true. He's got one plan and one plan only-to kill, steal and destroy. And he accuses us all the day long. He's a liar. If you don't believe in Satan, then just quit telling yourselves this lie. Because everyone has something to give this world. Big or small, seen or unseen by a lot of people, popular or unpopular. You have something.

2. Find out what you have to offer/discover what you're good at.
When I first started blogging I was very overwhelmed, and that's an understatement. I had no idea what I was going to do with this blog, I just knew I loved to write and share. Through a lot of trial and error, I figured out pretty quickly what I was not. I then asked some people that are close to me what they thought I was good at and what they thought my gifts were. I knew I wasn't a photographer; I'm not bad at it and I've taken some pretty killer photos, but I realized realistically that I was not going to be that girl with her Canon everyday shooting amazing shots and then uploading them. I just don't have the stamina for that. I also knew I was not the clothing girl. The girl that wears outfits and then takes pictures and shares them. I don't care about outfits that much and it's too painful to get into outfits, literally so I knew I wasn't that girl. I knew I also wasn't the "crafty" girl. As much as I enjoy crafting and I can crochet a mean afghan, I knew I wasn't that girl. I also figured out pretty quickly I was not going to be the cooking girl with recipes, or the tutorial girl with videos. So figure out what you realistically are not. Then you will figure out pretty quickly, what you are. Or what you can do, and what you can contribute.

3. Hone in on your gifts.
Hone means to sharpen, or refine. Make "perfect". Once you figure out your area of gifting or strength, you will be able to contribute. So much of the time we feel like we don't have a "place" because we are focused on so many things we think we want to do or things we think we can do, when really, we aren't that great at them. Just being honest here. This is has been my journey of course and the case for me. I have realized the more I focused on my gift, my uniqueness, and what I was really good at--which came with time and even took time to discover, then I was able to fine tune it and really focus on that!
So put what you're good at, best at, in the spotlight once you figure out what it is. In the spotlight in your mind and heart that is, at least at first. Do what you can to nurture it, and spend time in it and focus on it. Get "good" at it. Then you will be ready for my next step....

4. Share and contribute!
There are many ways to manifest your gifts and talents. There are many ways to get yourself out there to share with the world. It could be blogging, it could be joining a group, doing craft fairs, writing a book, sharing status updates, a separate FB page, a video page on youtube! It could even be simply sharing in the lives of others. You will eventually find your "place".
Contributing to the world can happen in many ways and on many different levels. And just because some people are "seen" and others are "unseen", that doesn't mean that they have more value than you, it's just how they are being used in this world for whatever reason. There are many factors that play into how people become seen (and that's another blog post ;). Find the courage to step out of your comfort zone and share yourself with the world! And lastly....

5. Accept this truth.
It's one thing to read my words and think it's a nice idea or gesture. But we can claim and believe this to be true and move forward with a new line of thinking! We can let her gifts be hers, and let our gifts be ours. Her gifts are unique to her and what she has to offer. Mine and your gifts are unique to us and to what we have to offer. The world needs us all.  And it needs us in all different ways. For me I've chosen to believe and see it that God has a certain way for it all to go down and play out for me. And I love trusting His plan and seeing His provision in my life. His timing has been nothing short of perfect. 
Let you, be you!!!


Gina said...

I think there's a lot of power when we are authentic and true to ourselves. That makes people notice and then opens the door for us to make a difference in the lives of others. I love the quote: "be you, everyone else is already taken".

Discovery Street said...

Gina what is crazy to me is I see you as a very talented crafter, stylist, photographer, writer...and so much more. I know we are our own harshest critics, but man, I think you have MAD talent and you're not giving yourself enough credit!

Amy Caudill said...

i can relate to this completely! like you were speaking right into my heart. i'm so thankful for you Gina! keep writing from your heart. the Lord is using you in many more ways than you'll ever know.

BARBIE said...

I am thankful for you Gina, and your contribution to this big world. You are unique, your gifts are unique and I appreciate you!

Dusti said...

Amen! Love your blog. Such truths. Especially love that Steven Furtick quote.

Everyday, Looking for Rainbows said...

Amen! Thank you for these words that I can identify with as well as your and your encouragement

Mary said...

Hi Gina, thank you for stopping by my blog, it't nice to meet you.

And thank you for these words. I am going on 58 and I am finally believing I have something of value to offer...I have believed the enemies lies for far too long.

Here's to freedom, and walking into who God says we are!

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