I have decided that in 2012, every Thursday I will write an article just for us girls.
I’m going to call it “Girl Talk.”
And today, I want to ask a question: By this time next year, how do you want your life to look? Where do you want to be? What do you want to be doing?
The phrase “by this time next year” was brought to my attention via a sermon preached by Rev. Lance Watson, who preached a sermon entitled the same. Taken from the story of Abraham and Sarah, who were old and childless, the Lord tells them that they will have children.
They are old; it says in the 18th chapter of Genesis that “they were already old and well advanced in years, yet this promise to them was made by God. “I will surely return to you about this time next year and Sarah your wife will have a son.
Sarah was past the age of childbearing and she laughs; God hears her and asks why? He confronts Abraham, asking “Why did Sarah laugh and say, ‘Will I really have a child, now that I am old” Is anything too hard for the Lord? I will return to you at the appointed time next year and Sarah will have a son.”
That sermon stayed with me, as did the question, and I have begun a women’s group here in Columbus called “Becoming.” The driver for the group is the statement, “By this time next year…” and the women have decided what they want and how they will get there “by this time next year.”
The idea behind the question and the work that we are doing is that we women, too many of us, are not even close to being what God created us to be. We have thwarted ourselves by comparing ourselves to other people; we carry low self esteem like it’s a part of our anatomy; we are not able to love ourselves and so our love relationships suffer. The fact is that too many of us do not realize who we are, and how innately gifted we are.
We need to “become” the people God created us to be.
I watched Michele Bachmann bow out of the 2012 Republican presidential campaign, and though I do not agree with her politics, it seems to me that she is a woman who has “become.” She has chutzpah and convictions and she is a bulldog in staying her course, in spite of sexism and all the other things she as a woman in man’s world has to face. She fought to be heard by media which really didn’t want to treat her as a serious candidate; she made herself heard.
She has “become” who God made her to be, and is still “becoming.” Think of what this world would be if more of us women would become.
Way too many of us stayed covered and protected, in cocoons or pupae, like butterflies or moths waiting to “become” the beauties that they are. There are a lot of reasons for that, but whatever the reason or reasons, we need to shed them.
The women in the group I began are moving. It is so inspiring to see! They are pushing out of their cocoons, trying things they always wanted to but were afraid to try. They are applying for jobs they always wanted to apply for, working to get their poetry published, no longer afraid of rejection. They are realizing that they have gifts that they have never used, and I can see them putting little toes in the water.Some of them by now are standing in the water they were afraid to even look at several months ago.
One of the members’ original goal was to have a husband “by this time next year.” Now, however, she has changed her goal. She is owning the fact that she has a gift for interior decorating and she is determined that by this time next year, she will be on her way to being able to do that as a living, something she loves and is passionate about. As she has made that decision, her spirit has resonated and she is actually drawing to herself clients who recognize her gifts and who want to use her.
She is “becoming.” She is pushing out of her cocoon. It is so exciting to watch!
Nobody in the group is allowed to just say what they will “be.” They are required to report on their progress on a monthly basis.
And so, if you asked yourself “by this time next year what do I want to be?” what would your answer be? Ask yourselves the question, and see if it doesn’t empower you.
Final thought: I am pushing out of my cocoon, too!
A candid observation…