May 13, 2011
What stops us from taking bold steps towards hopes and dreams? Is it past mistakes, fear of failure, a short supply of assurance, or not knowing how to be humble and hopeful at the same time?
Do self-deprecating thoughts keep us timid and fearful? Do we give in to the status quo convinced it’s to our merit? Do we settle for less to appear spiritual?
This will be the topic of discussion at the Inspiring Women by Intentional Design event, May 20th, at the Lynnwood Convention Center. In the evening session Cheryl Dore will help us remove limitations we’ve unintentionally set for ourselves.
Every woman can live hopeful in every season if she redefines her past in light of her future.
Together we’ll raise the bar! Determine God’s standard to move from the cave to the court, from the prison to the palace. It begins by truly understanding the wealth of God’s investment in us.
October 12, 2010
Have you grown oblivious to the scent of wet dirt and made obscure caves of hiding your home? Are you tempted to accept defeat, curl up in the dark, and cower beneath the weight of hopelessness and despair? If so, I imagine it’s because you doubt you will ever live a life of intentional design and purpose. You’ve stopped living confident each day brings you one step closer to what God has been preparing you to do your whole life.
You’ll be glad to know convergence is just beyond the horizon! It’s defined in an article by Mike and Cindy Jacobs (www.deborahcompany.org), prophetic teachers known for uncovering the heart of God for approaching seasons. They liken convergence to “a moment of ‘historic growing up’ where you are operating in the assignment that the Father had intended when He designed you.”
The season that lead to where I am today could be described “convergence. It’s defined
in the dictionary; a coming together from different directions, uniting, or merging groups or tendencies previously opposed. If it sounds chaotic, I think you get it. It is. Just imagine the most unlikely women collaborating with God and His purposes for your life.
The intentional watering by a spiritually, relationally, and demographically diverse group of women who identified with me, pulled me from caves of embitterment. I would never have picked them out of crowd, and yet, they partnered with the purposes of God for my life. An unsuspecting group of women on similar journeys offered prayers without judgment and perspective beyond the cave. They pressed through the hardened exterior to find the gold.
Perhaps your cave is like mine. A struggle to hold on to identity and purpose having a valuable door close and the next slow to open. It’s described by some as “hell in the hallway” or “the land in between,” your very own desert experience. The good news is, beyond the horizon is a time of “historic growing up,” stepping through the door to what God has been preparing you to do your whole life. The fog lifts. You see clearly. The handle to the door is in front of you. It’s been there the whole time, only obscure and clouded by judgment in disrepair. You realize “all your history, as dramatic as it was, was really preparation for the real purpose God has for you” (Jacobs).
To immerge from the cave will require surrounding yourself with the right people and asking the right questions. They are what Mike and Cindy Jacobs define “searching people,” those looking to God in prayer to uncover life beyond the cave. Sometimes the best question is the logistical one. For the disciples it was, “Jesus, Where do you want us to go and prepare that you may eat the Passover?” (Mk. 14:12).
They ask for input into what is mere logistics. Their question, however, is a precursor to ours. It demonstrates trust in God. It’s the approach of “searching people.” They don’t assume to have all the answers, but submit themselves to the heart of God and His capacity to know what they do not know. “Where do you want us to prepare?”
“Go into the city,” Jesus says. “There a man will meet you carrying a pitcher of water, follow him.” He describes an unusual occurrence in a society where women do this kind of work. Why look for a man who is carrying water? What benefit will a man of this caliber be?
“Wherever he goes in,” Jesus said, “say to the master of the house, ‘Where is the guest room?’ He will show you a large upper room furnished and prepared” (Mk. 14:13).
I am amazed by what they find. That’s a divine connection! Convergence! Stepping
into what God had in mind for that moment. In the same way we are to be alert, and
yet submitted. Collaborate with the purposes of God and what He intends to accomplish through others.
It will involve taking notice of women you encounter and conversations that transpire. Ask yourself, “Where is God in this, what is Jesus doing?” Be intentional when it seems meaningless, tiresome, and draining. Follow women you find less remarkable to see where God might be leading. It just might be that you encounter a large upper room, furnished and prepared!
www.womensleadershipadvantage.com Women by Intentional Design coming fo Lynnwood Convention Center, May 20, 2011
April 7, 2010
“If it’s true that we are here to help others, then what exactly are the others here for?”
“That’s a good question,” I thought, reading a post scribed by a young woman whom I imagine is not alone in her sentiment. Her post captured my attention as the heartbeat behind Womens Leadership Advantage is to catapult women into a life of intentional
design and purpose. To be the “other people” she’s asking about.
One might respond to her by asking, “Do you think the purpose of another is something you are to be concerned with? Or should your energy be spent on what God is asking of you?” The question while having its place, merely demonstrates how difficult it can be to identify with the feelings of another, to be intentional to get to the heart behind the question.
By asking, “What are others here for,”I wonder if she is grieving her loss to date concerning the role described by Marc Morial, who celebrated 100 years of opening the doors for others. What he described in his promotional material is a huge
loss when it is absent. He said, “No one gets to where they are without someone else helping, assisting, pushing, inspiring. We have an obligation to open doors for others.”
This is the role of the cupbearer in scripture, Joseph’s bunk mate in prison. Joseph turns to him for the help and assist he needs. He says to the cupbearer, ” But when all goes well with you, remember me and show me kindness; mention me to Pharaoh and get me out of this prison” (Gen. 40:14).Two years expire before the cupbearer remembers Joseph and opens the door for him.
This only proves the sovereignty of God, His timing and His work in us and through us. We are created in Christ to do good works. It is what God prepared in advance for
us to do (see Eph. 2:10), also equipping us with the gifts needed to be successful. And yet, the role of the cupbearer is instrumental to the purposes of God. The unfolding of events in Joseph life following the cupbearer’s recommendation is amazing! It is the fruit of one. Just one! One who is willing to put his reputation on the line and say, “I know a man
with a gift, a man in jail, and yet, able to do amazing things as a recipient of the deposits of God!”The cupbearer creates opportunity. He is imprisoned with Joseph to be the assist that pushes him into the purposes of God for his life. This is what others are here for. This is what we are here for… to be the help described by Marc Morial, whose organization celebrates 100 years of opening doors for others!
I have heard it said something to the effect of, “Today’s successful leader will not be the “Lone Ranger” but the woman equally committed to the vision entrusted to another.” To be committed to and not in competition of the hopes and dreams of another is to see every woman as a gift, and cheerish the gift of who she is. It is to embrace the unique plans of God, as in all probability He has good reason for every individual He has placed in our lives.
Consider this powerful statement: “No one gets to where they are without someone else helping, assisting, pushing, inspiring. We have an obligation to open doors for others.” -Marc Morial
Womens Leadership Advantage is a growing community of women with experience and expertise committed to your success. Here you will find women eager to dream with you They will help, assist and inspire you for life! May you dare, dream, and find we are the “push” encouraging you to do what you are designed to do!