When I began blogging, I did it to be famous. That’s the sad, honest truth. I was desperate to be popular, successful, better than anyone else. I wanted everyone to be looking at me, praising me, telling me I was great. I didn’t appreciate the gift I had. I knew I could write, but I found it so easy I didn’t realise what a gift it was.
Looking back, it’s pretty shameful.
I began my writing journey thinking there were some creative people and some who weren’t. Some who could write and some who couldn’t. Some people with a voice, and some without. It’s a common perception amongst many.
But over the years, the more I wrote, the more I grew to love writing. And the more writers I met, the more I realised the talent I have is a gift, to be given to others, for their benefit. A responsibility.
And as time went on I realised writing, communicating, wasn’t just about ability. It’s about having a story.
There are some people who can’t write but have a powerful, transformative story. And there are some who can write beautifully, but don’t have a story to tell, or a message to share.
The writing we remember isn’t always the best writing – though that has its place. The words which change lives are the best stories. It’s the stories we remember. And each of us have a story to tell the world. A message to give to others.
Not all of us may be gifted writers. But all of us have a voice.
All of us have a story to share with the world. Experiences we’ve had and lessons we’ve learned which we can share with the world, which can benefit others.
This is why I think we can all write. We can all create something to share with the world which can impact at least one other person for good. Because we all have stories to tell. All have lessons we’ve learned to pass on.
People respond to great stories. They remember them.
And why? There’s two reasons:
1) We were all created to live unique stories
You were born to live a story like no one else. You have a unique combination of gifts, experiences and knowledge which have all shaped you and given you a unique vantage point on the world – which can help others.
2) We were created to live in community
Yes, we were all created to live unique stories. But we weren’t designed to live them on our own. As I’ve said so often, we were designed to live these unique stories not on our own, and not for ourselves. But in community. With and for the benefit of others. And our stories encourage and bless others within their stories.
When we are living great stories, we inspire and encourage one another. (you can tweet that).
The biggest lesson I’ve learned from my own experience is simple.
My gifts are not about me.
My talents, my gifts, my calling isn’t for or about me. It’s for the benefit of others, to be given as a gift to others and used in the context of community. Not kept to myself, but shared in with the world. Of course, there are benefits for me, but they aren’t the reason the gift was given. And the greatest blessings come from the simple act of giving your talent as a gift to the world.
I’m coming to a place where if only one person reads my work and benefits from it, I’m good. I’m pleased. I’m a success. It’s not about status, achievement, wealth, popularity. It’s about using my gift as a gift to the world – and if it’s only a gift to one other person, then that’s okay.
Even if no one else benefits from it, I’ve done my job. I’ve given it away to the world. And I hope one day this will be enough.
So whatever story are living, whatever gift you’ve been given, your job isn’t to decide what the response should be. It’s not to keep it yourself.
It’s to give it to the world. And not worry about the response.
The response isn’t the reason you give your gifts. You give it simply to serve, to bless, to encourage others. That’s why it was given in the first place. If there’s any response, good or bad, it doesn’t matter. You’ve given your gift, and it was a joy to give it. That’s what you were created for.
So give your gift today.
And let your joy come in the giving.
Questions for Reflection:
What’s you motivation for your work or serving others?
How do you define success?
How can you learn to find joy in simply giving your gift, rather than in the response?
Share your thoughts in the comments below!
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Picture Source: GaborfromHungary via MourgeFile
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