Here is my latest blog. I waited a while before putting something out because I don’t want to just write to fill in a space or be ‘on time’ with content. I write blogs that will be a life lesson that I have learnt from my own life and that I believe will be a take away for yourself to apply and unlock areas in your life that may hold you back from being fully surrendered to the one you can fully trust in, Jesus who is fully trustworthy. This blog is taken from my first book; ‘Just say YES.’
There have been a number of surveys taken with people in the last stages of their life, whether that be related to age or illness, asking this one question, “If you had the opportunity to do life again, what would you do differently?” One of these very surveys was referred to in a podcast I listened to by Dr. Tony Campolo, Professor of Sociology, Eastern College, St. David’s, Pennsylvania. This survey was taken with 50 people aged 95 years and older and the results are noteworthy. The top three answers from the survey were as follows:
1. Reflect more – These seniors said they would have taken the time to think about what was going on around them and live their lives along well thought-out priorities. They would have contemplated the meaning of life, family and work much more.
2. Risk more – These wonderful aged human beings said they would have taken more chances in life. If they could relive their lives over again, they wouldn’t have been so scared to take risks. They would have developed more courage to venture out of their comfort zones.
3. Do things that would outlast them – They wanted to know that their lives counted for something, that long after they left this world, somehow their impact would live on.
These results are a wake up call to many of us because we don’t want to get to the end of our lives and be surveyed with answers of “I wish!”
Right now, whatever age you are, if you continue to breathe air on this earth, you still have the opportunity to take advice from these elderly people by choosing to stand up now and make a decision, that from this day forward, you will, at the end of your life, leave completely emptied out and satisfied rather than being full of regret with that potential still sitting inside of you.
Potential is what we are capable of becoming in every area of our life. Our potential is boundless. The only thing that can limit us from becoming all that we can be, is us.
The sad truth is, that throughout history, most potential has simply been buried in multitudes of cemeteries. Stories untold, songs unsung, journeys never taken, businesses never started, ministries never born, vision uncast and people never connected.
Why is this? What stops us from fulfilling our potential? I don’t think it is from a lack of wanting to do all the things that are in our heart, because each one of us has dreams, or at least thoughts of dreams, throughout our lives. So why is it that so many don’t move beyond the thought stage?
I believe the answer lies in the ‘parable of the soil’ found in Luke 8:5-8. Here is that parable which I have adapted. So the parable according to Deb Hilton.
The Path: You know what you should do but you don’t do it because it’s easier just to keep going the way you are. “I’m not really satisfied with my life but I am comfortable and it’s safe where I’m at.”
The Rocky Soil: You know what you should do and you think it is a great idea. You even begin to put your dream into motion, but after a while you give up because it’s just too much hard work to change or keep the momentum going, so you go back to how you were.
The Weedy Soil: You change and start putting good things in your soil; you are on a roll, but then after a while, you start to worry about everything. Is it all going to work out the way you want? Worries start to rob you of all the good things you have put into your soil. You allow them to become the main thing in your world instead of trusting God to bless all the good things you have put in. So eventually you go back to how you were.
The Good Soil: You know what you should do, so you begin to change and put good things into your soil, and know that if you keep going and don’t give up, you will achieve your dream, your purpose, your vision. Even when things get rocky, you continue to stay motivated because you believe that if you keep going, you will succeed. You fill your life with things that will do you good, things that will help you grow, to strengthen and stretch you to keep you on the path to your goal. Sometimes things don’t go according to your expectations, but still, you stay on the path, planted in the soil because you know it’s worth it. In time you start to see the seeds grow and produce fruit, lots of fruit, and before you know it, you are living that dream, that vision, the very purpose you were put on this earth to do. Now you are dancing.
It is so easy to make excuses. For example, you say, “I’m not smart enough or positioned well enough to make anything happen. You don’t understand where I came from, what my life has been like.” Well I say take a moment to research people who have been successful in life and you will find many of them were either kicked out of school or told they wouldn’t become anything in life, yet today, they are living their dream.
Talk to successful writers, people in film and on stage, men and women who have built successful businesses, or people who are influencing the world through preaching, teaching or training. Talk to those who are now being a voice for defenseless lives, seeing others lifted from their destitution. Their stories are more often than not, your story, my story. Some of these people began in broken homes, were homeless, abused, brought up in poverty, even born with handicaps but they didn’t let that define what their future would look like.
What is the difference between those who do and those who don’t? What is the mark of those living out their purpose and those who aren’t? The difference is right in front of you. It’s you. It starts with you.
Don’t be another statistic, another person, who at the end of their life says, “I wish I had,” but be one who says, “I’m glad I did.” The world needs more “I’m glad I did people.
We must change our “I can’t” to “I can, I’m called, I’m destined, I’m purposed to live a life beyond where I am now.” The process is simple. First we must choose! Choose to stand up from where we are now and take one step forward. Every successful person begins with those two ingredients: choosing, and moving. So are you ready? I challenge you right at the start of this journey with me to get up now and take that first step. If you do just that, you will find the yoke of ‘impossible’ falls off you and the steps ahead of you become easier to walk. The first step is always the hardest, so if you have chosen to do that, well done!
Then as you choose to continue putting one step in front of the other, one day you look behind you and to your own surprise, find how far you have come and how close you are, to seeing your purposed call being fulfilled for your life.
Trust God in your journey.
One thought on “No regrets”
Yes, it is good to live a life of purpose. We will see you again in Vietnam.
All the best,