This question has been on mind since I attended the Influence Conference last month.
I am a woman with many interests and there are a lot of things I’m passionate about.
But what lights my soul on fire?
What gets me fired up and out of bed in the morning?
What lights the spark in my heart and sets me ablaze with a passion and zest for life?
When I really think about it, get honest with myself, and narrow down all those things I really enjoy to the things that truly get me excited about life, I would have to answer with the following Top 5 …
- Starting my day with devotion and worship of God. I am an early riser by nature, but I awake even earlier than most on weekdays to spend time in His presence. Cultivating this daily practice over the past few years has been one of the best things I have done for myself as it puts my focus not on the tasks and to-do’s of the day ahead, but on Him. Acknowledging Him as my provider and the source of my strength invites Him to enter my days and infuse them with His Spirit. I know without a doubt that I would not be able to do some of the things that I do (for example: running long distances, speaking in front of large groups, confronting difficult situations) without His presence in my life. He gives me all that I need, to do what I have to do, and living my life surrendered to Him is what makes all things possible and fires me up to live abundantly!
- Intentional quality time with my husband. Kenny and I are very independent people and are constantly on-the-go in our careers and with our own individual interests. It’s not uncommon for us to go days without seeing one another due to our schedules. Therefore it is imperative that we make time to be together, just us, with no distractions. This is one reason we make a point of taking a week-long vacation together each year to places far away from home and our normal everyday routine. But spending time together is not always a grand adventure or a fancy night out on the town – sometimes it’s just hanging out and watching television or making sure we eat dinner together. Other times it’s being outside doing yard work or running errands together (whether the other one of us needs anything specific or not). It doesn’t have to be anything spectacular, but rather, something that gives us the opportunity to connect, talk, listen to one other, and learn about each other and what’s going on in our lives. I’m always so incredibly grateful for these times and the love of my man has gotten me through so many things – both big and small. His love and affection and support fires me up to be the best wife, and woman, I can be!
- Growing and sustaining relationships. Spending time with loved ones – family and friends – always reminds me how blessed I am to have such amazing people in my life. Grandparents, parents, siblings, ‘the littles,’ aunts and uncles, cousins, and those dear, dear friends of ours who chose to love us and weren’t “forced by blood relation”- these are my people. They know who they are. And without their love, encouragement, and support throughout the years, I do not know where I would be. Being with them, hearing about their lives, and learning from them fires me up to keep dreaming, keep going, and keep loving this life I’ve been blessed to live here on earth.
- Serving Others. Serving God. I believe that when we use our education, gifts, and skills to serve others, we’re ultimately serving God. And serving Him via service to others always fires me up! In my career this looks like leading staff with kindness and respect, supporting them as they use their strengths and stretch themselves in their weaknesses to serve those who are in need. In my personal life this looks like volunteering my time to serve on an Executive Board of Directors for a small non-profit agency I’m passionate about, writing on this blog each week to share encouragement and inspiration with all of you, posting things on social media that speaks beauty, truth, and goodness to a world that desperately needs it, and doing other things like sending people cards in the mail, buying a little gift for someone who needs a “pick-me-up,” praying for someone, among other things. I love to see the fruit God grows from simple service to others.
- Maintaining health and wellness. Eating well. Drinking water. Working out (running, walking, spin, and weight training). Practicing self-care. These things are essential to my living a life of balance, peace, and wholeness. There was a time in my life when I didn’t do these things at all, and even a time more recently where I was doing really well on the physical health end of things but not so well on the mental health end of things. I’m happy to say that these days I am in much better place than I ever have been, and it’s because I’ve learned from hard experiences what it means for me to live healthy and free. I can look back on those difficult times and see that they have brought me to where I’m at now, and that fires me up to share that part of my journey with others who are struggling, because we can learn from one another and show each other that there is hope of overcoming whatever seeks to bring us down and steal our joy.
Now that I’ve answered the question, I’m asking you, friends …
What lights your soul on fire?
What makes your ‘Top 5’ list of things that lights the spark in your heart and sets you ablaze with a passion and zest for life?
Whatever those things are, do MORE of them! Make time for those people and practices that fill your tank and sustain you on the hard days. I promise you won’t be disappointed.
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