Last night, I was scouring pinterest in search of new artwork for my bedroom walls. In between abstract painting and personalized city map prints, I was struck by a framed typography art piece with a quote by F.S. Fitzgerald:
“For what it’s worth: it’s never too late or, in my case, too early to be whoever you want to be. There’s no time limit, stop whenever you want. You can change or stay the same, there are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope you make the best of it. And I hope you see things that startle you. I hope you feel things you never felt before. I hope you meet people with a different point of view. I hope you live a life you’re proud of. If you find that you’re not, I hope you have the courage to start all over again.”
The verdict is still out on whether I will purchase this particular Etsy store steal, but the quote lingered with me throughout the rest of the evening. I have no idea what faith Fitzgerald held, or whether his aspirations were of the “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done” mindset. I will assume though that Fitzgerald knew a thing or two about courage because it takes courage to change.
Change demands courage. The courage to honestly assess your life and articulate when something is no longer working or no longer serving your God-given purposes. The courage to be able to acknowledge, “there’s more in me than I’ve been letting on.” The courage to determine there’s more to learn and more to become. The courage to say, “I’m not okay with just okay anymore. I don’t want just some of what Jesus invites me to; I want all of it!”
One of the things I love the most about *coaching other Christian female leaders is watching them realize their lives are in fact an adventure. A spark comes back on within them. A hunger to grow draws them out of the familiar into uncharted territory with Jesus and new explorations within their leadership. They go from talking about change to making some changes. There are tears shed and tough conversations to be had and strong disciplines to be put in place, but it inevitably leads to new depths of faith, hope and love unleashed in their hearts, their homes, their families, their churches, and their places of work.
As we enter into this second week of the new year, many of us are already feeling a bit bossed around by meetings and laundry and deadlines and full inboxes. I get it. Let me remind you though, that it’s never too early or too late to make a change. To take up running. To go back to school online. To turn Bible reading and prayer into a time of “joyous experimentation” as my pastor friend Stephen Francis puts it. To go to counseling. To establish date nights. To build new friendships. To write the book. To ask for forgiveness. To try a new hobby. To visit new places. To spend more time with family. To take better care of yourself. To invest more time in the development of people. To change how you lead. To change how you live.
I, like you, do not have a magical crystal ball that will reveal what this year will entail. I don’t know with certainty the events that will take place. I can’t tell you if 2024 will be less challenging for you or more difficult. No one can. But I do know this– No one else gets to decide how you will grow or who you will become this year. That’s entirely up to you.
More than anything, I hope you hear Jesus’ invitation to you afresh and anew:
28-30 “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”
-Matthew 11:28-30 The Message
I pray you have the guts to respond. To draw near to Jesus. To find courage to change in Him, and that you would know more and more what is to truly live lightly and freely.
*I help female ministry leaders, executives, and entrepreneurs lead bravely and boldly without sacrificing their health and wellbeing! With over 20 years of ministry and business leadership experience, I know just how demanding leading others can be. Without the right support and encouragement, every leader is susceptible to isolation, discouragement, insecurity, and burnout. But that doesn’t have to be your story, and I truly believe Jesus has better for you! For more info on my Lead with Love Cohort & Coaching Program, email me at email@example.com.