Do you ever find yourself in need of a little extra enCOURAGEment? With everything that’s been going on, I have. Each time I need it, God lifts me up through someone’s words. For that and so many other reasons, I’m glad I have a personal relationship with God.
That’s why I keep talking about it. It’s so cool that I want it for you! Even if you already have one, I want more. 😁
And not only do I want a relationship with God for you, but I want all the other amazing things that come with it . . .
The Bible actually says . . .
“The joy of the Lord is YOUR strength” (Nehemiah 8:10, NIV).
Who couldn’t use a little more of that?
Since I published my book last year, people have been asking about sales. To be honest, I’m not even sure exactly how to figure them out.
But it’s stories like this that put a smile on my face . . .
Avery and I met in college.
During our semester at the University of London, we stole away for an adventure every chance we got.
On Easter, we went to a parade then walked around a carnival. As we parted ways , I invited her to come with me to a church service at St. Paul’s Cathedral.
“I’m Jewish,” she said, ” Remember? No thanks!”
Thirty years later, we are still friends. Here’s a picture of her at the pig farm where she used to volunteer:
The other day she emailed: “For absolutely no reason, I felt compelled to write out an experience I had. I thought you might like to read it. It’s really up your alley!”
Of course, I wanted to hear what she had to say. Here’s what she said:
It was my birthday, not a biggie, just an ordinary mid-decade one.
I have always loved my birthday.
When I was little, Mom made my day the absolute best. In grade school, she brought cupcakes. When I was older, she took me out to dinner, made a cake, and wrapped up gifts. It wasn’t everyone’s holiday, it was mine, ONLY mine.
On that day, I was special.
When Mom died three years ago . . .
My birthday was never quite the same.
Dad tried, but he didn’t grow up celebrating birthdays. He took me out to dinner and told me he loved me. And my sister who lives in another country tried to make it great from afar by showering me with gifts.
This past birthday was the first without Mom or Dad. Again, my sister tried. But I knew it wouldn’t, couldn’t be the same.
So, I planned in advance.
I arranged a day at the zoo with a good friend. Then we went out for an amazing lunch and met others for happy hour. All in all, it was pretty good, not the same, but pretty good.
At the end of the day, I decided to treat myself to a bubble bath. As I lay in that bath, I started to cry. It would be another 364 days before my next birthday
. . . 364 days before I would feel special and important.
That’s when I heard Him, God . . . yes, God.
I’ve been religious for most of my life, but my religion was full of “Thou Arts” and “ Thou Shalls.”
It always seemed so, well, distant.
My friend, Elizabeth Bristol, recently wrote a book called Mary Me. I bought it and read it.
Liz is a beautiful person I met many years ago. I have always been so very envious of her clear and unapologetic belief in God.
While I believed in God, she BELIEVED.
She wrote this fabulous book about having a personal relationship with God. At one point, she described giving God a different, an ordinary name.
Are you allowed to do that?
She details how she has a personal relationship with God.
Again, Are you allowed to do that?
I never really knew what having a personal relationship with God meant. In her book, my friend talks to God. He talks back and even gives her advice!
My God never did that for me.
I decided to open my mind and heart to a personal relationship with God. I started talking to Him. Just like any ordinary person. If I have a relationship, I get to, right?
Well, I’ll be darned if He didn’t talk back.
I was driving in my car asking God if I was doing the right things. Where should I be? What’s my purpose? And is my life good enough?
Lo and behold, He said, “Keep on truckin.”
I don’t even use that language.
It was something people said when I was young. I never picked it up. But I smiled. To me, Keep on trucking meant, yes!
- You are on the right path.
- It is OK to be satisfied with your life.
- You are doing enough.
- And you are good enough!
I continued having conversations with God. I was no longer amazed.
Instead, I was mad I hadn’t discovered this God before!
So, back to my end-of-the-birthday bubble bath . . .
As I said, I was getting teary-eyed. No more day of importance, it was back to the ordinary. That’s when God spoke again. He asked me a question.
“What if every day is your birthday?”
It took me a second to realize what a monumental revelation this was. What if I . . . what if we allowed ourselves to know that we are important?
What if we accepted every day as special and unique?
Now that, that’s life-changing.
I started waking up every morning with new energy and enthusiasm as I realized this day was made for me! I got to do what made me happy and feel fulfilled.
Like Avery shared . . .
There is something different about life with God.
It’s special and unique, filled with purpose that gives you energy and enthusiasm!
• When I asked Avery for a bio, she said:
I live in Phoenix as a practicing lawyer. I am President of a small no-kill animal rescue and I am mother to 3 sweet dogs.
Related post: How Much More Do You Want to be Loved?