Life Coaching Articles

Born Resilient: Why You Can Overcome Anything

The coronavirus year of 2020 has taken its toll on many. Some have lost their lives, others their jobs and for most everyone – our general way of life because nothing is normal about this year. People have become tired. And with another looming winter upon us, some (or most) of us just want to throw in the towel and be done with this. Done with the social distancing, the masks, working and learning from home, all of it; it’s exhausting. But the reality is that covid isn’t quite done with us. And as we see cases on the rise again, it’s easy to feel defeated. But this is what I love about all of it: God created us to be resilient. Yes! You, me, everyone and every thing. We will get through this.

Think about a weed. A measly, insignificant weed. Every time that weed is cut down, it comes back. Every time that weed is pulled out, guess what? Its root is so deep, that weed pops out of the ground again. And when a weed does establish itself, it is almost impossible to get rid of. Now if God created a weed and gave it that level of resiliency, then he definitely gave it to us too.

Of all the years this planet has been around, we have survived, endured and in most cases, flourished. Covid will be a blip on the radar in the long run. It may feel unending at this time, but remember – you are resilient, powerful and strong. And you are more important to God than any weed. He created you in a way so that you won’t only survive or endure, you will with all certainty, flourish.

Resiliency is a muscle. The more adversity you face, the stronger you become. Know that the crisis in front of you will only build you out into a more dynamic, bold and powerful individual. Hold on to hope and embrace the pain because that struggle is exactly what fine tunes the magnificent person God created you to be.

Meditation: Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. – Romans 3:3-4

How to Create Hope from Hopelessness

how to create hope
Photo by George Hiles on Unsplash

Hope is defined as a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen. Ergo, hope is essentially a belief that what we want to happen will actually occur. Hopelessness steps in when our beliefs change – when we start believing that what we wanted to happen will never ever happen and that something unpleasant will, in fact, transpire. That feels heavy just typing it. Take a moment and imagine what hopelessness does to our momentum, our choices and our impact on one another. It’s not pretty. So it’s important during these times to challenge the beliefs of impossibility and our thoughts around it.

We can ask ourselves a few questions to help us when we feel hopeless:

  • Where do my beliefs come from?
  • What makes them true?
  • What proof do I have to support my beliefs and is it helpful?

I’m willing to bet that your answer to the last question is that you actually don’t have any real proof. And that is because often times, our hope comes from the environment around us, not a pure source. Some examples of that environment may be words spoken to us by friends and family, the news / social media or past experiences. The problem with developing hope and beliefs from these areas is that they are of this world.

Now don’t get me started on the news, but the news thrives when we are captivated in fear. They tell the version of the story that will suck us in and lock the door behind us. Let’s please not base our hope from there because the news is mostly in the business of creating hopelessness. Our friends and family are people and people are fallible. Even if they have the best of intentions, their opinions on our possibilities may not be accurate and instead based on their own experiences or insecurities. And past experiences – just because something happened once or even several times, does not mean it will happen again.

So where should we find our hope? Where is a pure source of belief? The answer is always simple to life’s big mysteries. And to this one, the answer is God. It’s in developing a relationship with Him and going to Him with our anxieties. We can ask Him what to hope for. Only He knows the plans for each of our lives. Our family and friends, as much as they may try to help, do not know. Past experiences certainly do not and neither does the news. Even when everything may appear to be falling apart, it still does not mean that the future is bleak. Take it to God. Take everything to Him. Only He knows what the future holds for you.

But perhaps you are praying, and not finding the answer right away. While we wait, we can all do as Jesus taught and simply love one another. We can strive to focus on today and let the worries of tomorrow go. We can show up for others in a kind, patient and loving way. And we can help our brothers and sisters in need even if it just means listening, truly listening. Who do you want to be? What do you want to create? How do you want to show up for your friends, family, children and co-workers?

So will you join me and challenge your beliefs when you feel hopelessness? Will you lean on God, create a relationship with Him and focus on others? It’s a simple formula that won’t just create greater joy in your life, but for everyone around you.

Meditation 1: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” – Jeremiah 29:11

Meditation 2: Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. – 1 Peter 5:7

Restore Peace in 4 Simple Steps

Restore peace in 4 steps
Photo by Tyler Nix on Unsplash

Peace is defined as freedom from disturbance. But our current environment has been anything but! Coronavirus, financial uncertainty, protests. Some necessary, some we could do without. But here we are. And we will find a way through it. But as we navigate these times, will we restore peace in our lives and in the lives of those we touch? Or will we create more divisiveness? The choice is ours.

Step 1: Give grace abundantly away.

Right now, throw that grace around. Sprinkle it on your dinner and dish it out to everyone you know. The majority of us are under stress and that makes us reactive. And reactions are usually misaligned with how we would like to respond. No one is perfect and remember that fact next time you get upset with someone or their opinions. We all learn and grow every day – you, me, everybody. Give out some grace. Restore peace.

Step 2: “Seek first to understand, then to be understood.” – Stephen Covey

So I deactivated my facebook account a few weeks ago and recently hopped onto my husband’s account to checkout Marketplace. And then it happened: I hit the newsfeed and was sucked in. Once I pulled myself away, I realized that there was a huge lack of understanding. No one and I mean NO ONE sought to understand someone else’s opinion before demanding that everyone believe and follow what they said. Talk about chaos and divisiveness! I encourage everyone (myself included) to simmer down, and to remember to seek understanding of another’s thoughts, feelings and perspectives before responding. In doing so, we will all benefit and our communication will flow much more generously and peacefully.

Step 3: Live by Example.

Our impact literally never ends, but our opinions do. And while those opinions are at it, they create disagreement and can destroy peace. Have you ever noticed that when someone states an opinion on social media, they get a bunch of ‘likes’ from those that agree and comments from those who don’t? Opinions just rally people who already agree with you around you. It doesn’t create any real change. If you want to change your community, live by example. Do something. Be something. Create change through action and inspire change by example.

Step 4: Limit Your Intake.

The news sells fear to crank up their ratings. And social media is saturated with opinions and reposts of the news. Take a breather from it all. See what life is like without all of the extra noise. Create peace of mind and let your impact flow from there.

Do you have other strategies to restore peace? Share with others in the comment section below.

How You Can Give Back Today

how you can give back; giving tuesday
Photo by Dakota Corbin on Unsplash

Part of the difficulty during this period of time is that we can’t do much. We are literally confined to our homes and told to distance ourselves. On top of that, our financial stability may feel uncertain as we face new challenges many of us have never seen in our lifetimes. So what do we even have left to give? What could we possibly do to help right now?

How you can give back is simple: Be exactly the extraordinary person God created you to be.

God created each of us with many gifts and talents and each one of these contributions are unique, yet dependent on one another (Check out 1 Corinthians 12 – It’s one of my favorites!!). You are the gift and the gift of you is necessary to this planet, right now, today. This is a time we can all rise up and truly come together as a community – regardless of our differing beliefs, thoughts and opinions – to support each other. What we do for one, no matter how big or small, creates an impact on the others life. So what I do impacts you and what you do impacts me. And together, through small and large gestures alike, we create community.

You may be wondering how you can give back, or what gifts and talents you can to bring to the table. I love our humanness because we are so much more than what we ‘do’; we are more than laborers, professionals or stay at home parents. While these occupations are important and we learn a substantial amount of skills through them, we are dynamic and our humanness adds to the amazing abilities we’ve already acquired through those experiences.

So what could these other skills be? Some examples of the gifts and talents that can be shared with others include:

  • Being a good listener
  • Providing wisdom, emotional support, spiritual support or encouragement
  • Teaching or offering a service from one of your hobbies: Gardening, woodworking, sewing, baking, etc.
  • Praying for others and for our leaders to make sound decisions (1 Timothy 2:1-2)
  • Being light-hearted, humorous or gregarious (thank you to those with these special talents!!)
  • Offering personal financial analysis or budgeting help
  • Providing resume review and job search advice
  • Being good with children (while you may be unable to interact with kids, you can provide tips and activity ideas to grateful parents)
  • Artistic abilities such as providing craft ideas or creating and gifting your work to uplift another
  • Musical talents – Could you imagine life without music right now?? That would be unsurvivable!!
  • Not sure what you can do? Everyone can do a random act of kindness, lend a hand, write a thoughtful note or simply give a smile.

The gifts and talents God has given each of us are truly unlimited when we are united together. I look around at those in my life and I see these gifts spring up right in front of me. My neighbor is a teacher and is excellent with children. I could learn SO much from her. My mom is always upbeat and encouraging. What an amazing gift to offer others right now. My husband is physically strong – imagine what he could do to help neighbors and elderly around their yards! All of my siblings and friends are gifted in their own ways: hilarious, wise, creative, patient, gentle, peaceful, resilient, supportive and optimistic. They each are a gift in just sharing that part of themselves with others.

So what are your God-given gifts and talents you can share during this time? What can you give freely and generously with no expectation of return? How can God use you? Don’t ask permission to be generous. Share you gifts and talents today. Hear me!! YOU ARE NEEDED.

Meditation: Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. – 1 Corinthians 12:12

*To discover you spiritual gifts, visit The Catherine of Siena Institute for more information on their Called and Gifted program (C&G). Interested in their workshop? Call St. Vincent’s Church in Fort Wayne, Indiana to sign up for their next C&G workshop on Saturday, October 10.

Who Are You Being?

Photo by Fuu J on Unsplash

Who are you right now? Who are you being? Are you truth? Are you love? What about peace and hope? Or are you fear? Are you anger? Are you distrust and discouragement? What are you giving to others? And what is that creating in your home, within your friendships or even on social media?

The current landscape of this world is a sea of chaos, fear, hopelessness, anxiety, anger and hysteria. And it’s easy to be swept away into its dark and ominous waves. But if we allow it, we won’t just keep our heads above water, we will be swallowed whole and unified with its wrath. Fear and chaos then become our new narrative that controls the focus of our minds, and thus dictates our entire lives. We are no longer free, but now slaves to its blows and an extension of its fear-inducing tentacles.

We can all look at fear and understand what it creates: hopelessness, greed, anger, discouragement, war, hatred, broken relationships, depression and unfortunately, the list goes on. One may argue that fear and anger create passion for change. We may believe that our outrage or anger can sway hearts. But the ultimate truth is that feeding the storm doesn’t create the change we seek. It creates more of what’s already there, not just in the community, but in your own life and in the lives of those you care for most. If we speak anger, we anger others. If we speak frustration, we frustrate others. We create what we give.

Each one of us is responsible for who we are in this storm and its ripple effects. Over the last few weeks, I’ve both seen and taken part in its violence. Personally, and at different times and varying levels, it created stress, fear, darkness, anxiety, anger, self-righteousness, arrogance and hopelessness. When I allowed it to flow out of me to my family or on social media, I created more of it. And not just for me – for others too.

But, that’s not who I want to be for others; I want to be different. I don’t want to be the one that incites anger, fear, dread, drama and anxiety. I want my ripple effect to create hope, love, joy, generosity and peace. Each one of us has a choice in how we respond to what’s going on around us. Each one of us can create real and lasting change that results from the clarity of living and giving peace, hope and love. How will you respond to this storm and as a result, what will you create in your life and in the lives of those you touch? You can change it all in an instant.

Meditation: “Send me your light and your faithful care, let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell.” – Psalm 43:3

A Season of Growth: What are you cultivating?

Photo by Ravi Roshan on Unsplash

We have entered Spring, a season of physical growth. Trees are budding, perennials are emerging and chicks, ducklings and all sorts of animals are entering this world to begin their own journeys. Planet Earth is in full swing of its annual rebirth.

As creatures of this planet, we are also experiencing this growth. Daunted with the task of navigating COVID-19, our spring awakening is different this year than those of the past. It is asking more of us and calling us to grow and evolve to deal with these challenging times.

We often think we are in control, that life is secure. And when events like COVID-19 occur, we feel we no longer have that control. That loss of control can cause us to feel worry, fear, frustration, depression, desperation and anxiety. That mental warfare then floods into the other areas of our life. Our concentration at work suffers, our ability to lovingly connect with family and friends disintegrates, and our capacity to access peace of mind dissipates at a rapid-fire pace. Sit for a moment and think about how that impacts your life, how fear shapes your choices and the results those choices create.

There is so much uncertainty about the upcoming weeks and months. But the truth of the matter is that we never had control to begin with. God has the ultimate control. We could have the best economy and suddenly lose our job. We could have a healthy family and unfortunately lose a loved one. At any time and in any moment, we could experience an unexpected hardship. We are never fully in control and the moment we embrace the truth that God holds all the cards, we can then access emotional and spiritual peace to help us transition any period of life – no matter what our perceived level of control may be.

When we face a crisis but have faith as an ally, our response and experience is vastly different. We are able to grow the fruits of faith which are, but not limited to: Peace, grace and CERTAINTY (Yes! Certainty that God will lead us through whatever is thrown our way). Think about how that impacts your emotional and spiritual well-being. With peace of mind, we are then able to create joy, meaningful experiences, clarity, motivation and love – all things that positively impact every area of our lives and the lives of those we touch.

In Hebrews 11:1, faith is defined as “…the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” It is trusting in an outcome without knowledge of the who, what, when, where, how and why. When we place this faith in man (whether that is ourselves, another or an organization), we may be let down. Man is fallible and can only see limited possibilities. But when we place this faith in God, the one who is all-knowing, all-loving and infinite in possibility, we set ourselves up for greater outcomes.

There are three tenets of faith to truly live it: patience, courage and trust. Patience in God’s timing, courage to act (or not depending on what He is calling you to in a given moment) and trust in His guidance. Right now, and without a doubt, we are challenged this Springtime to grow our trust – trust in God, trust in His plan and trust in His guidance. We are to trust that we will emotionally, physically, spiritually and financially survive the weeks that lie ahead and if we don’t survive it in the way we anticipated, that we trust God will lead us to our next chapter and provide new blessings in our lives, perhaps even bringing greater joy than we previously knew possible.

My hope is that you experience a growth in faith this Spring. Should you allow trust to infiltrate your heart, you will see the fruits of faith develop right in front of your eyes. Peace, clarity, joy, loving impact, a new way of life, a new way to create growth that reaches out and positively impacts everyone you love.

Jennifer Hale: Doing Good Deeds for The Greater Good

Greater Good, Jennifer Hale

I haven’t written an interview in quite awhile but I was so inspired to do so because the person within it is so inspiring to me. It’s not so much what she says but what she actually does. This woman reaches others with her big heart, graceful words and kind spirit to create real change in our community. And we are so lucky to have her. I’d like you to please join me in learning about the fascinating Jennifer Hale and her experience as Community Leader and Advocate.

Tell me about The Greater Good of Northeast Indiana (NEI).

The Greater Good of NEI concept started out of a need that I saw in the community to help bring more awareness to the activity in the nonprofits and to help engage our community at large. Over the past two years, it has grown from a Facebook page promoting various nonprofit events/needs, to presenting multiple community events and developing partnerships with Input Fort Wayne and Current Fort Wayne which help to spread the mission of supporting our nonprofits. 

What drives you? What’s your ‘why’ behind your work?

If I have an idea that I can’t shake, I have to try to run with it. It might fail gloriously, exceed expectations, or land somewhere in between, but I’ve always believed in simply trying. When it comes to the Greater Good concept, the more I took time to listen to people active within nonprofits and in the community at large, it became more and more apparent that this was a ‘need’ to fill a gap. The task itself is daunting most days, because I want to run a marathon but can only get a mile done, but its growing and that’s what keeps me going. My ‘why’ is really just trying to leave this world a little better than when I found it. I have three kids who know how passionate I am about giving back and if I can pass on anything to them it is to be an active member of any community that they are a part of – not just for the benefit of themselves, but for the benefit of others.

How do you maintain your drive with life’s ups and downs?

I’ve learned that we can do all things with faith and grace! It is a really hard lesson to learn – REALLY hard. I often used to take situations in to my own hands to achieve the results that I thought that I wanted, but I have learned to be more open and have received countless more opportunities with a shift in heart and mind. And give myself plenty of grace. I am my hardest critic and have had my own share of depression and anxiety, so when I feel like I’m not enough or doing enough, I step back, take a breath and learn to be grateful for where I am at.

What all are you in involved in at this current moment?

This year I’m structuring the business side of the organization and formalizing as a Benefit Corporation in Indiana. It’s really exciting because this is a relatively new corporate structure in Indiana, but has been gaining really positive traction on a national arena.

We’re also working on community partnerships that will bring awareness and support to Postpartum Depression and maternal mental health both of which have astonishingly high rates with little to no positive action surrounding it. It should go without saying that maternal health is critical in any healthy societal structure, so again, the need for awareness is real and I’m working on bringing more conversations to the forefront in our own community. 

With a new born, how do you make time to network, run The Greater Good and manage your family?

It’s amazing how open people are to meet with me and a baby! I try to use good judgement on when and where it is appropriate, but part of where I am in my life is being a mom first and foremost and so having to share that with people at times is part of this season of life. I am grateful to have support to watch the baby as needed and while the older kiddos are at school, but I really believe that as moms we become highly specialized at multi-tasking, so I rely a lot on that super power most days.

Who is your biggest inspiration?

Martin Luther King and Princess Diana were big influences for me when I was growing up. I couldn’t read enough about their own missions to create critical change in the world during their own lives. Consistently though, my most direct inspiration is my own mom. She’s 75 years old and volunteers weekly with the homeless. As long as I can remember she cheers on the underdog and had a servant leader’s heart before the concept even existed. She is led by her faith and I’m really just a product of her passion for helping others in God’s image.

What has been your biggest challenge in your goals as a community game changer?

There’s so much that I want to do and it feels like there is so little time to accomplish it. That’s where I have to give myself some grace. Every step forward is a small success building towards the bigger picture. 

For anyone aspiring to step into an active role within their community, what advice do you have for them? What should their first step be?

First find out what you are passionate about, for example – women’s issues / children’s causes / homelessness / animals etc. There are so many organizations in our community that fight daily for those who are under served, so first find out where your heart is and watch the rest unfold. You can follow organizations on Facebook or just ask me through The Greater Good page ( 🙂 ) Then, take a step! If you have time to volunteer but no funds to donate, give some of your time. If you have funds to donate but no time, give some of your funds. That’s always been my own baseline when it comes to giving back. What I have learned is that any little bit helps – do not hesitate by how much or how little you may be able to give – just always give first with love and see where it leads.

Faith + Work: What Does It All Mean?


I recently attended a new program here in Fort Wayne called “Faith + Work” where the focus is on living our faith in the actual work we do. There were people of all demographics in the room, wide eyed and ready to learn even at 6:30am. Tony Opliger, Pastor and headline presenter, shared one distinctive message – Our work is meant to create three things: Order, Beauty and Abundance. Then through a panel like discussion, James Khan, Owner of Proximo, Hoppy Gnome and Bakerstreet, and Charles Threets, Dishwasher and Preacher, explained beautifully how they live their faith in their work, although very different roles.

Next, it was our turn, the audience. We were asked and challenged to discuss among ourselves “Where are the opportunities in your work for you to create order, beauty and abundance?” Naturally, we all gave completely different answers. The CEO talked about working with his board and relationship management, the consultant had a different answer altogether and the writer shared the story of Jesus and the 7 loaves and 2 fish and correlated that to our work.

Once it was my turn to answer, I have to admit – I was a bit jumbled. I have three main jobs: “Stay-at-home Mom”, very part-time “Reporting Analyst” and even more part-time “Life Coach”. But with this chaotic mess, I had the blessing of being able to compare how I live each of these, why I live them that way and what works versus what doesn’t in terms of creating order, beauty and abundance. This comparison helped me realize three factors play a part in creating each of the outcomes in my work: Be God-centered. Be intentional. And be confident in your skills and talents.

For example:

  • As a Mom, most days I’m so overwhelmed that I throw my hands in the air and take a very reactive approach. There is no intention and thus, no order. I bring God into it, but definitely not consistently. And let me tell you – comparison robs me of using my special skills and talents as a Mom. Some days, I’m so busy trying to be what I think I should be rather than using the gifts and talents God has given me to truly impact my kids in a profound way.
  • As a Reporting Analyst, I have the skills and I LOVE creating the order which results in gorgeous clarity on our Income Statements and thus, this creates abundant outcomes for our board. As a bonus, it challenges my brain in a way I enjoy. But God has not included in this work which makes me beg the question – what potential am I, my co-workers and the organization at whole most definitely missing out on?
  • As a Life Coach, well this takes a back seat to everything else. It typically receives my focus when I have ‘extra’ time. Yet, this is the one area where I am extremely God-centered and let Him drive the ship. I wonder, what would this path look like if I was intentional about making it a bigger priority and I put more confidence in my gifts and talents? I bet it would be completely different and the impact would be that much more substantial.

I’m grateful I woke up early for this program. It truly is just what I needed to refocus my work – both why and how I do it. It was profound hearing the stories through the lenses of various individuals. And we all disseminated the content of the program in different, but very tangible ways; it met each one of us exactly where we are.

So now I want you to join the conversation. How can you create order, beauty and abundance in your work? And in your life? Do you include God? Are you intentional in your work? Are you confidently using your gifts and talents? What others factors do you find important in supporting the creation of meaning in your work?

Share your insights and thoughts the section below.

12 Great Questions for 12 Months of Real Change

12 great questions; new years

The start of each year is a chance for a fresh beginning. However, we typically begin strong and dwindle as the weeks go on. This time, let’s stay in movement throughout the year by asking ourselves these 12 great questions periodically (daily, weekly or monthly) to help us create maximum change for 2020. Click here for a printer friendly version. Happy New Year!


How can I create more space in my life for God and his guidance?

By creating space and time for God, we can more easily hear his voice and create clarity around our goals and direction. How can you create more space in your life for God’s direction?


What has God been calling me to change about myself (or life) that I’ve been resisting?

God always wants the best for us and he knows which goals and choices will bring us joy, meaning and fulfillment. What change have you been resisting? It’s the surest path to creating joy in your life.


If I could achieve 1 major goal this year, what would it be?

Often times, we come up with several goals to accomplish each year which diverts our focus; it can become very overwhelming which may cause us to quit. Choose 1 goal and do it well.

4. Create ACTION

What are 2 steps I can take this week to move me closer to my dream?

Pick 2 actionable items this week and choose two more the week after that and so on. I love the quote by St. Francis of Assisi “Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.” What can you start doing now?

5. Create MOMENTUM

What distractions can I remove from my life to keep me driving forward?

Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat. Message Alerts. Need I say more? The mediums that interrupt you are what break your focus and drive towards your goals. What can you remove from your life?


How can I respond differently to disappointment?

Our flow in life is all about how we respond. Many things that happen to you are out of your control, but you get to decide how it impacts you. How can you respond to maintain a gentle flow towards success?

7. Create JOY

If I could have 3 fun experiences this year, what would they be?

Joy and fun are just as important as our goals. What would be fun for you to experience this year? What will keep you light, airy and excited about life?

8. Create SELF-LOVE

What is one habit or ritual I can employ to allow personal care in my life?

Often times, we forget to take care of ourselves. If you find you experience burn out, how can you better take care of yourself on a consistent basis?

9. Create FREEDOM

What beliefs or perspectives can I change to give myself inner peace?

Negative beliefs about ourselves or others creates deep inner turmoil and impede our ability to live a joyful existence. Where do you find yourself upset with yourself or others? What is your belief or perspective in that area and how can you change it?

10. Create LOVE

How can I be more present to those around me?

The people we care deeply for need us. How can you turn off the noise in your brain or temporarily set aside your work and interests so that you can give more of yourself to those around you?


How do I want to show up for others?

How do you want others to experience you? As confident? Loving? Generous? Kind? Challenge yourself to be this way regardless of the way others treat you.

12. Create RELIEF

How can I use my gifts and talents to help others more generously?

God has given you so many extraordinary talents and gifts. We all need to check in from time to time and ask ourselves if we are comparing ourselves or trying to be like others to fit in or be liked. God needs you to be YOU for others. What special gifts and talents make you unique and special?

Peace in 3 Steps This Holiday Season

peace in 3 steps

Family relationships can be tough. With the holiday season upon us, we often long for the picturesque family gathering where everyone gets along, feels included and creates lasting memories. So it can be rather difficult when this just isn’t our reality. We may want healed and renewed family relationships, but that doesn’t mean it is a shared goal amongst everyone involved. As a result, we may feel emotional pain, robbing us of our peace and joy.

However, we are not powerless. “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7 We are not victims. We can create joy and peace in 3 steps right now, even in the midst of derision within our own families.


The first step is acceptance. Accept the situation as it is. We cannot change others and we definitely cannot make them love, like or value us. They may never even try. The sooner we accept the way things are, the faster we will find peace and perhaps be able to enjoy our family holidays.


Don’t expect anything good or bad from your less than satisfactory family relationships. Inaccurately expecting good results creates pain when we discover we are wrong. And expecting poor family interactions sets us up to be defensive from the get go. Both situations steal our peace and rob us of our joy.  


When we feel that members of our family don’t love, like or value us, we may begin to believe their opinion. Let me tell you – their opinion doesn’t matter. The only opinion that matters is GOD’S. And God created you as whole and complete. Who you are, every minute detail God created, is beautiful, capable, loving, creative, unique, kind, valuable, likeable, generous, needed and a gift. Your self-worth lies in God’s perspective, only. He is perfect and His creation – you, me and everyone – is perfect. No one is excluded.

Let this holiday season be different than those of the past. With these 3 steps, you can create contentment which leads to peace and joy. Let your light shine and allow God’s love to flow through you so that you may bring a little joy to everyone you pass over the next several weeks. You and God’s mission for your life are too important to let family dynamics keep you from anything less.