Do you wake up every morning and know – deep inside you – why you’re here?
Not just what you do while you’re here. But really, WHY you’re here? Without over-thinking it, can you answer these questions quickly and clearly about yourself?
- What’s unique and wonderful about me?
- Why does that matter to people in my life?
- How can I invest my talents daily?
- How do I maintain balance and get rest so I can consistently use them?
I’ve always liked the story of Esther in the Bible. Young girl, captured by the enemy, rises to become queen and save her people. What’s not to like about that??
But even Esther didn’t always know what she was about. She had some natural gifts: she was gorgeous, articulate, gracious. And like most of us, it took a little thinking to figure out what these talents meant for her, and WHY they might be helpful to the world.
- Beautiful… to attain the notice and heart of the king.
- Articulate… to convey a message.
- Gracious… such that respect and hospitality filtered through even her dealings with the enemy.
Who are you?
You’re not Esther, that I know. And neither am I. Like our fingerprints, not one of us is a copy of another. Are you a wordsmith? A giver? A bearer of mercy? Someone who listens particularly well? A dreamer? A thinker? A strategist? One who sees others’ potential, even if they don’t?
How are you using that right now?
Your gifts aren’t for you, after all. They’re to make this rock we’re on a place worth calling home. They make what would be a flat, black-and-white life a life full of color and joy.
4 ways to grow your gifts
- Learn about them. Read books and blogs. Watch YouTube and TED videos… and other people who reveal an aspect of what you know is a gifting in you. Take notes. Keep a journal with little snippets of insight you gain along the way. If you’re not a paper/pen person, check out Evernote (I love it and it works on phones and laptops).
- Ask God to show you His design for your talents. In that same journal you’re keeping, write your questions. “What could that situation reveal about who I am?” “How can I use what I’m good at in different situations?” “What about X activity makes it so easy and fun for me?” The Bible’s pretty clear: ask for wisdom and God will give it. After all, He wants you to live your purpose even more than you do!
- Seek out a mentor. Someone who’s clearly doing what they love and are good at, even if it’s not the same talent as you’ve got. Just watching how someone develops their purpose will give lots of good ideas for your own journey. And having someone to encourage you when you hit bumps in the road is an invaluable asset.
- Practice them, even if it’s awkward at first. (And it will be.) Keep looking for ways to use those talents. When a volunteer opportunity arises, consider it against what energizes you and what you do well. If it’s not a match, ask for another role or make one up! I do that all the time in things I’m involved in, and it makes for a richer event/project when everyone’s investing their gifts well.
Do you believe you have a deeper purpose? What might you do today to step into it more fully?