Anchored – Not Adrift!

 

Daily Post Word Prompt: ADRIFT

 

An orphan.

That’s me. Without mother. Without father.

However, I’m not a child-orphan but an adult. Nevertheless, when my mother died last year, I felt alone in the world. Even though I have my husband, even though I come from a large family.

I was faced with the stark reality that there would be no more mum to turn to, to share my news and notions, to share my problems and prayer requests.

Even though, if truth be told, things had not been quite the same since mum fell victim to Alzheimer’s disease; and even though towards the end of her life-span, mum was not the strong, independent woman I’d known; at least she was alive, at least I could enjoy some form of connection.

Now her death, our physical separation, left me feeling adrift in the world – without parental anchor.

Is this how mum felt when my father died unexpectedly—left alone with 7 children, in a country that was not her own, that did not really want her? Did she feel somewhat adrift without her spousal anchor, adrift upon the cruel tempestuous seas of grief and bewilderment?

Is this how the disciples felt after Jesus’s death? Adrift from He who had anchored their life to purpose, to identity?

Thank God that was not the end of the story for any of us (my Lord’s disciples, my mother, myself). Contrary to our emotions and initial perceptions, we were not left alone in this world.

Christ’s resurrection from the dead has given us hope and that hope serves as an anchor for our soul. Christ’s resurrection has given us new purpose, a new identity—Kingdom purpose, Kingdom identity. And whenever we need guidance or direction or help, or whatever, we have only to ask.

Whether orphan or not, as children of God, as purpose-driven believers, we are not alone in this world.

Ahoy there landlubbers!

I have a message for you today. I’m not hiding it away in a bottle in the hopes that one day it will be found. Oh no! I’m shouting it loud from the top of my lungs. I’m displaying it clearly from the top of Christ’s mast.

Whatever my circumstances, whatever my concerns, since Jesus is with me and has promised never to leave me—then I am not adrift!

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Wanna read more or participate? Then hurry along to: https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/adrift

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Whoo Hoo Wednesday!

 

I’m giving thanks today to my Father God, my precious Lord Jesus and my creative director and associate, the inimitable Holy Spirit.

Why am I thanking this divine trio?

Because today is another day in my writing history where I have cause to flag up some new achievements. I give my thanks and the glory to this awesome holy trinity, because I consider them to be indispensable members of my success team.

And now for the reason for my joy and for this post.

Recently I’ve felt a little discouraged because

  • Blog growth is slow.
  • Blog interaction is erratic.
  • And a recent attempt to rally interest in my first blog challenge event has so far met with zilch response.

But this morning after discovering certain email in my inbox from three individuals, I felt over the moon.

The first was from a blogger friend Kato, a dear and humble minister of the Lord, who was asking whether I’d mind him sharing my post Pick up Your Cross on his site. He deemed it an important message. Would I? I felt both touched and honoured and of course I granted permission. Please check out his blog. Some of you may recall that I’d recently reblogged one of his posts regarding discovering our life’s purpose.

The second cause of joy came from the editor of a Christian women’s magazine. A guest post, Love’s Sacrificial Mind-set, has been published in this beautiful magazine, Ruby for Women. Further, my article has been featured on the main page of the RUBY community website  and on the Ruby blog.

Dear reader, even if you have read this particular post before, please check out the magazine. And you writers out there if you’re interested in contributing an article, poem, photograph or other artwork, please check out the submission guidelines. The site also hosts a Christian Community, so why not check this out also?

And the third cause of joy came from an editor of a literary blog, which I highly recommend. An article I’d submitted was published on Monday. I’d be so grateful if you’d kindly go along and visit and support me with your likes and comments. Here’s the link.

Unbeknown to me, whilst I was feeling low, these three emails have been sitting in my inbox since Monday. And so I declare today as Whoo Hoo Wednesday! May there be many more whoo hoo days to come, for me, my lovely followers, readers and supporters, the editors of Two Drops of Ink and Ruby for Women and also dear Kato.

Whoo hoo! I’m a writer – yay!

Whoo hoo! I’m a published writer – double yay!

 

Credit: CC0 image – courtesy of Oberholster Venita at Pixabay.com

Enjoying My Dream Vacation

BLOG CHALLENGE

 

Are you up for the challenge?
Are you up for the challenge?

 

This post relates to day 6 of this 30-day blog challenge (I know – I’m getting behind!). Anyway, do you want to join in?  If so, for details on how to participate please check out: https://lifewithgraceandbeauty.com/2016/11/17/blogging-goals-whos-up-for-the-challenge/

 

Blog challenge prompt:  DAY 6

All work and no play?  We all need time to relax and unwind.  What’s your favorite vacation spot?  Why is this your favorite place to unwind?  What is the best thing to do here?  Where’s the best place to eat here?

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holiday1michellemaria-pixabay
CC0 Image – courtesy of Michelle Maria at Pixabay.com

 

There are some exquisite places within this world and I have been fortunate and extremely blessed, to have holidayed in just a few of these places.

But wherever I go, whether it be on a tropical island, or a country retreat in the British Isles, or even just in my own back garden (during such times when I couldn’t afford to take a holiday, or my sense of obligation prevented me from doing so), the favourite spot for me has to be the wonderful world of an author’s creative imagination. It has to be the world within a new fiction book.

You see, for me the ultimate in relaxation, in glorious, unashamed revelling at the complete and utter freedom to please myself, to relax and unwind, to not be dictated to by a clock, or monotonous routine, or other people’s demands—but to be able to lie back, or sit in a space where I can absorb the delicious, obliging rays of warm sunshine and enjoy the ambience of my surroundings—has just got to be the joy of reading a new story, of making the acquaintance of new characters, of engaging with the various twists and turns of my vacation buddies’ convoluted lives.

holidaybooks-unsplash-918521_960_720And so, as a measure of my appreciation to the author, and also as a measure of loyalty to these fictional friends, I ride the highs and lows of their joys and disappointments. I empathise with their pains, sorrows and failures. I exult in their achievements and success. Yes, as the plot unfolds, I’m absolutely angst-ing (ok, I admit it – I’ve just made up this word) alongside them. I’m rooting for, and celebrating with them.

In other words, dear reader, the joy of luxuriating in a magical world of creative words and literary phrases is my favourite vacation spot. And if you add to the mix, balmy weather, tasty food, thirst-quenching drinks and melt-in-the-mouth, more-ish ice-cream, then, believe me, I’m in seventh heaven!

ice-creamritabernhardt-pixabay1500845_960_720

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Dream-achievers, where and how do you like to unwind? Please share your response in the comment box below and, if you enjoyed reading this post, don’t hesitate to like, rate, or share it with your social network contacts. My sincere thanks in anticipation.

 

Chameleon? Colour? Controversy?

DAILY POST WORD PROMPT

 

I wonder… to be, or not to be?

 

Daily Word Prompt: New Skin

Would I benefit from new skin?

Perhaps a white one, so I could generally find acceptance in a white man’s world. Perhaps then I could walk around life batting my blue eyes, flicking my fair locks and use these as a passport to a world of dignity.

rhinoceros-pairlynngreyling-pixabay1612629_960_720Then again, perhaps I should swop my skin for that of a rhinoceros. They often say sensitive people need to develop a hard skin. I imagine that should be hard enough! Toughen up baby! But, is that not just semantic speak for saying you should not get upset when people don’t celebrate you, when because of your colour they doubt your ability, snub you and systematically besmirch your reputation—or (horror of horrors!) even decide their dog deserves better treatment and respect than you? (Now there’s a thought – perhaps I should just get me the skin of a lap dog!)

dogmelanievandesandepixabay-1305734_960_720

But if I were to develop a hard skin, such that I didn’t feel it when someone hurts me, would that mean I’d have become an unfeeling, uncaring so and so?

I suppose I could swop my skin for that of a baby’s just for the fun of it, for the sake of having that soft sweet baby smell. But I’m not sure that would work either. Loved ones wouldn’t take me seriously. baby-tawnyvanbreda-pixabay784608_960_720They’d start conversing with me in that strange baby-speak, tickle me under my chin, and try to feed me with that yucky pureed stuff in jars. Nah!

So I guess I’ll just have to be content with my own skin. Learn to live in it comfortably. Adapt my behaviour in order to accommodate its likes and dislikes (as opposed to allowing racist rhetoric to make me feel uncomfortable within it, or pandering to anyone’s demands, fears and suspicions, as a direct response to it!).

After all these years, I should be able to shrug off the received but unwanted, unwarranted prejudices towards the colour of my skin. I should be able to – right? And, I should be able to ignore the ignoramuses who believe because my skin’s black and because my black skin is stretched over a female form, I don’t belong to the human race… I don’t have a right to speak up… I don’t have the right to be taken seriously… and I certainly don’t have the right to self-respect. Yep, under no circumstances should I show ambition or promise – no siree!

Well dear reader, I have come to a conclusion. A new skin? What good would that do? I just wouldn’t be me anymore!

Now I can’t think of any more fitting conclusion than this song, which confirms and consolidates my convictions on this subject, so I invite you to boogie along with that consummate musician—the inimitable Michael Jackson.

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Wanna read more or participate? Then hurry along to: https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/new-skin

And don’t forget to leave me your responses or feedback in the comment box below.  I look forward to hearing from you.

 

NB: photographs used are all  CCO images from Pixabay.com

 

 

That Tree!

The Daily Post Word Prompt

 

Hello faithful followers and lovely visiting readers!

I’m thinking it’s time I posted another one of my responses to the Daily Word prompts. This is so I can showcase my writing ability in another format and perhaps gain the interest of any prospective commissioning editor that might be roaming around my corner of cyberspace! Anyway, I’m posting the following for fun and trust you will enjoy reading.

Please do let me have your feedback in the comment box below.

 

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 Daily Word Prompt: Tree

  

CC0 Image by Hans Braxmeier - Pixabay.com
CC0 Image by Hans Braxmeier – Pixabay.com

 

The horse chestnut tree stood tall and erect, strong and silent, robed in its green summer finery.

How I hated that tree! Hated the way its leaf-covered branches hogged all the light and sunshine from my adjacent garden, starving my shrubs of light and life.

I hated the way it spread its greedy grasping roots past its fenced boundary—daring to encroach upon my property, spreading its life-sucking roots with quiet determination, caring not one iota that it robbed light and life and nourishment from plants that had a legitimate right to be there.

horse-chestnut-tree-pixabay275921_960_720Its leaves, although green, are severely afflicted with rust splotches – incontrovertible evidence that although it would have you overawed by its might and height, although it would have you believe it is invincible, some blighting affliction had struck it.

Just deserts, I say, for stealing accommodation for its roots, for stifling and strangling the life of my own plants which have a legitimate right to be here!

I didn’t care that it offered a home, a sanctuary to those green parrot-like birds, year after year and I could not care less about the grey squirrels that use it as an escape route from the next door neighbour’s cat that regularly lies in wait, hoping to pounce upon the pesky rodent.

chestnuthansbraxmeier-pixabay60346_960_720I did care about the huge amount of life and light this arboreal nightmare absorbed whilst denying my own garden the same privilege. And I did care that it dared to add insult to injury by shedding its rotten leaves in my garden, expecting me to pick them up whilst it looks on in haughty disdain, without even so much as a “thank you”!

So, next door neighbour, now you know exactly how I feel, perhaps you will kindly do something about it. And, if you won’t, then don’t be surprised if you, I and your tiresome tree are featured in the next reality series, Neighbours from Hell! Don’t say you weren’t warned.

 

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Do you enjoy reading? Do you appreciate good writing? Then let me introduce you to another blogger, whom I believe needs wider exposure. To read her take on this same prompt, please visit: https://whennothingworks.com/2016/10/06/when-trees-walk-home-with-you/. And, if you do enjoy, please encourage her with your comments, likes etc.

Now, should you wish to participate, or if you simply want to read further responses to this prompt from other bloggers, please visit: https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/tree/

 

 

 

 

A Stark Contrast!

The Daily Post – Daily Word Prompt

CCO Image - courtesy of Pixabay.com
CCO Image – courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

The Daily Post – Daily Word Prompt: CONTRAST

 

There is a stark contrast between me and Him.

O yes, we both have the same father. We both belong to God’s Holy Order of kings and priests. But that my friend is where the similarity ends. He is far, far superior! He has to be, for he has made me and he is self-existent—i.e. nobody made him! He existed along with the Father and the Holy Spirit in the very beginning. His name is Jesus.

Contrast.

Now he is in Heaven whilst I am down here on Earth. But it wasn’t always so. There was a time that he was here on this Earth and within 3 years he brought much light and love, healing and miraculous exploits to the world around him. Whereas, I have been on this earth for over 50 years and I cannot say that I’ve impacted the world about me, or the people within the circle of my influence in such a marvellous way. Nope! Much as I wish that were true, I cannot say that.

Contrast.

Jesus was self-assured. He was not fooled easily. He did not strike back in anger, or resentment, or any other negative attitude when he encountered opposition or violence. Imagine being the one who made man, yet allowing the creature you created to mock and jeer, choosing to stand silent, dumb as a sheep, allowing yourself to be sheared so to speak. Sheared of respect. Sheared of self-esteem.

He could have summoned a legion of angels to rescue him. He could have opened his mouth and burned his detractors to a crisp. But he didn’t. He humbled himself. He remained silent. He succumbed. Succumbed to the malicious will of those sanctimonious bigots (fellow Jews) and soldiers of the Roman Empire—who breathed lies spawned from envy… who uttered false accusations… who mocked and ridiculed and humiliated him (stripping him not only of his clothes but also of his dignity).

How meek but strong was that to not react, to not use his power and might to blast them to hell? How meek but strong was that to not retaliate? Oh no—instead, he said: “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do”.

Contrast.

Now, if the power had been in my hand, I would perhaps have cursed them with my words. I would have stopped them in their tracks. Or I would levitate myself from out of my predicament. Or I would play games with them and put the ‘fear of God’ into them – disappearing and reappearing, taking on that aura of blazing fiery light so they could not look upon me but would either fall down in terror, or freeze to the spot in fear—and then I’d freeze them permanently!

But that is the difference between me and Jesus, the difference between me and the Holy Son of God. Jesus loved me and loved the entire world. He wanted to obey his Father at all costs, so that the world would have a way of escape out of spiritual darkness, and could be redeemed from the hateful hand of his arch Enemy, who also became our ultimate enemy. I speak of Satan (whom I also dub Mr Diablo)!

He is the Christ, the Messiah.

Me? I was just a doomed, rebellious sinner.

Okay, so now I’ve been saved by God’s grace, through his unmerited kindness. Now I’ve been elevated to the position of a saint (according to God’s reckoning). Yet, as his beloved child, his sanctified saint, I am nowhere near the calibre of this awesome man, who loved and sacrificed himself for me, who lived in order to die for me. And as I read his biography and compare his noble achievements with my base life’s record, I cannot deny the fact, yeah, I cannot disguise the truth that between me and Him—there’s a stark contrast!

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If you wish to participate, or would like to read other contributions on this prompt, please visit: https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/contrast/

And, for your further reading pleasure, if you have not already done so, you may wish to read my post on a contrasting character – the aforementioned Mr Diablo (another Daily Post Word prompt).  If so, please go to: Satan’s Suicidal Mission

 

 

Satan’s Suicidal Mission

The Daily Post – Daily Word Prompt

Image by Gerd Altmann (Pixabay.com)
Image by Gerd Altmann (Pixabay.com)

 

 How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! (Isaiah 14:12a)

 

The Daily Post – Daily Word Prompt: MISTAKE 

Okay Mr Diablo (aka Satan), so you made a mistake.

You had the audacity to think you could overthrow the Lord God Almighty. You not only had the audacity to consider such a move but you also had the temerity to try and act upon your foolish idea. BIG MISTAKE!

And, to compound your catastrophic error, you convinced one third of Heaven’s angels to abandon their allegiance to the God of Heaven and Earth… to the great I AM, and assist you with executing your devilish desire by mounting an unholy insurrection! BIG, BIG MISTAKE!

You failed! Utterly!

Why, oh why you ever believed such a plot would succeed, I’ll never know. Even I could see this could, and would never work!

Now I realise I’ve not been around as long as you have. I don’t have your twisted wit and cunning. But did you really think that a CREATED being could outwit his CREATOR—particularly when that Creator is omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent? I suppose that’s what comes of arrogance, deception and overweening pride. Wow! You are a real textbook example of the term delusions of grandeur, don’t you think? Hush now Mr Diablo, it was a rhetorical question—I was not really wanting an answer.

Was it worth the price Mr Diablo?

Was your evil covetous desire for supremacy worth being booted out unceremoniously from heaven? Was it worth exchanging your prestigious position, as the most beautiful angel in heaven with a highly significant responsibility, for the infernal regions of a dark spiritual underworld?

Granted, your heinous activity and warped influence is fully evident around the world. But for an egomaniac such as yourself, surely it must gall to find yourself confined to exerting influence anonymously, through manipulation and subliminal subterfuge. Surely, it must irk knowing that at the end of it all, you and your cohorts (whom you inveigled), are destined for eternal damnation in God’s Lake of Fire.

Do you ever consider your end Mr Diablo? Have you ever rued the day you decided to usurp my Father God’s throne?

Mark my words Mr Diablo—the time will come when you will have plenty of time to consider your error. Yeah, the time draws near when you will have to face the consequences of your monumental mistake.

(“Dead demon walking…”)

Until then Mr Diablo, let me bid you farewell. Oops delete that—let me say: good riddance!

 

(For biblical evidence of events alluded to above, please read Luke 10:18; Isaiah 14:12-15; Ezekiel 28:12b-17; Matthew 25:41; 2 Peter 2:4 and Jude 1:6).

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If you wish to participate, or would like to read other contributions on this prompt, please visit: https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/mistake/

 

Quit Comparing!

Hello dear readers,

I wrote the following article some years ago, to encourage myself and other wannabe writers. I think the fundamental message of this post can also be applied to newbie bloggers, or to anyone pursuing their dream (whatever that might be), or to those who perhaps feel discouraged during their journey towards achievement.

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gems(BrettHondow-Pixabay)
All images from Pixabay.com

Very often we view success in much the same manner as a gorgeous gem within a jeweller’s window display. We’re attracted by the lustre of those diamonds, the flashing brilliance of those stones and the fine quality of gold.

rings (Pixabay)We forget these beautiful jewels have been specially crafted. We forget those precious stones and polished metals had a beginning and that if we were to retrace the journey of those glittering jewels back to their origin, we’d see those finished products from a very different perspective.

RubyNecklace(Pixabay)We’d discover that the item nesting alluringly against a rich velvet backdrop and shining so brilliantly with the help of strategically arranged lighting, started out in a place of complete contrast. It started out in the bowels of the earth.

mine(Pixabay)

Once extracted, if you didn’t know what you were looking at you’d maybe throw it away as a valueless lump of rock. You wouldn’t realise it had the potential to be a thing of beauty, something that evokes admiration, even desire of ownership. You wouldn’t appreciate its capacity to bring pleasure.

The journey of an unpublished writer is very much like the above scenario. We ooh and ahh over the creative brilliance of polished writers. We appreciate their carefully crafted words set against the backdrop of an artfully arranged world. Attracted by another author’s style or success, we long to ‘own’ similar achievements.

books(Pixabay)

However, in our approbation of these works, we often leave a relevant factor out of the equation. Much like our appreciation of a beautiful diamond or sapphire, we forget that this artistic work, these authorial presentations had a fairly insignificant genesis.

Perhaps if we didn’t forget this, we wouldn’t feel despondent, frustrated, or threatened about our own endeavours. Perhaps we’d give ourselves a break, stop mentally flagellating ourselves because we haven’t crafted the ‘perfect’ article, short story or novel.

Perhaps we’d stop dismissing the raw materials mined from the bowels of our creative imagination and instead realise: “Hey! This may not look like much now but given time and patience, it can actually become something of value”.

writer-(Pixabay)

And perhaps, instead of constantly comparing the finely crafted pieces of other writers with our freshly mined lumps of untreated ore, we’d start to appreciate, even enjoy our modest beginnings. We’d begin to see our pursuits, not as a path of frustration and defeat, but of learning and adventure.

Fellow writers (I speak to myself as much as to you), let us view our beginnings and efforts with less negativity and more realistic expectations. Let us put our goals, dreams, aspirations and the different paths we take in order to achieve these, into the right context.

SuccessSignpost(GerdAltmann)Let us not fixate on publishing prowess as the ‘be all and end all’ of authorial accomplishment. Let us not be in such a hurry to arrive at ‘Success Street’ that we forget to enjoy the novelty and nature of our quest.

As aspiring writers, bloggers, purpose-driven believers and dream-achievers, let us find encouragement in, and take the following words of Ben Sweetland seriously to heart—Success is a journey, not a destination!

 

SINK OR SWIM? (That my friend is the question!)

The Daily Post – Daily Word Prompt: SINK OR SWIM?

Do I sink, or do I swim?
Do I sink, or do I swim?

 

“To be, or not to be. That is the question!” So asked Hamlet (the eponymous character of a Shakespearean play).

Well, my words are not enshrined within a well-renowned playwright’s script but I will utter them anyway. And my query is this: Sink or Swim? That is my question. That is my dilemma. That is the choice I must make.

Sink or Swim?

The choice is not a pleasant one. It’s not like selecting a champagne truffle from a box of Thornton’s chocolates. The choice is, do I allow myself to sink into despair, or do I swim through my troubles looking for the place where hope and resolution meet? Of course, I don’t know how long I’d have to swim before I reach this point. I could get tired. I could drown in my efforts, or I could reach the shore. I have no way of knowing.

Sink? Or Swim?

Do I sink beneath the weight of other people’s expectations and unjust opinions? Can I continue to tread water, or will the constant weight of increasing and unceasing requests—come here/go there, do this/do that, can you/will you?—engulf me within the tempestuous waters of other people’s demands? Do I swim through the morass of moral turpitude that constantly seeks to swamp my soul… that seeks to deaden my godly conscience?

Do I sink, or do I swim? Do I resolve within myself not to let troublesome circumstances overwhelm me, not let them cause me to sink beneath the flood waters of adversity? Do I choose to swim? It is a choice. A daily choice.

But what choice will I make today? Normally it depends upon how I’m feeling. Usually it depends upon whether I have spent time in the presence of my Father God to receive that injection of strength, faith and firm resolve. Will I sink today, or will I swim?

And that is the problem with choices – there’s no one else to blame. You make your choice and you suffer the consequences!

Will consequences be too dire if I were to allow myself to sink within the mire of other people’s opinions—that I’m not good enough, intelligent enough, or successful enough? Does anybody even care that I’m being pulled ever downwards towards the murky depths of low self-esteem?

Surely, to swim is a better choice than to sink? To sink is to give up. To sink is to perhaps invite waiting predators to take a bite out of me, worse still – even swallow me! To sink is to maybe reach rock bottom and never find my way back up again to the surface of possibilities. I suspect there are people who would prefer I sank into oblivion, into obscurity but I shall not give them that satisfaction. Yes, I am weary, but I’m making the choice to swim today. I’m making the choice to swim away, swim forward, swim tirelessly, until I reach that shore.

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If you would like to read other contributions on this prompt please visit: The Daily Post – Word Prompt: Sink or Swim

Question: How do you deal with overwhelming circumstances?

Titles and Taglines

blog-49006_640

Have you ever experienced a ‘brainstorm block’? Never heard of it? Not surprised! I’ve just invented the phrase. Brainstorm block has just got to be the most frustrating nightmare of any creative writer/blogger.

I’m behind with my exercises for the Blogging 101 course. I’m trying not to feel overwhelmed and anxious about the fact that it is Day 5 and I’ve only done one exercise. One! Talk about being a slow coach!

Ok, so I can’t quite shake off this perfectionist thing and my personality (or is it pride?) won’t allow me to just put something out there (anything as long as I hand something in). Nope, it’s got to be my best, which means as near perfect (in my estimation) as I can make it. But at this rate, week 3 (the end of this course) will come and go and the week 1 exercises will only just have been completed.

But what to do? My brain had seized up. Brainstorm block had taken over my mind with a vengeance draining it of all capacity to think, or conjure up even a mediocre idea.

Exercise 2 requires me to come up with a tagline. I have two blogs, therefore I need two taglines. But hard as I tried, not a single idea sprang to mind! How can this be so? Prior to this, ideas for a number of potential posts had inundated the little grey cells (as Hercules Poirot would say). But now, when all I want is a teeny weeny phrase to use as a tagline on each of my blogs there is nothing! Not even a naff idea!

For the uninitiated, a tagline is a short phrase that sits within the heading section of your blog. Together, the title and tagline provide visitors with clues as to the blog’s purpose and message.

Now, when I set up and launched my blog, I had absolutely no idea what a tagline was, or what it was supposed to do. So, when prompted to add one, I ignored the direction. After all, I have the name of my site and that’s the most important part – right?

I wasn’t convinced that my blogs needed this extra element but since I’ve enrolled on this course in order to learn, I felt the least I can do is seriously consider the suggestion and give the exercise a shot. So I read and re-read the exercise script and supporting articles. Light dawned. Yet still I found myself in not-a-shred-of-an-idea valley. This worrying condition lasted about 3-4 days. Had my brain cells shut down for the winter? Perhaps I should skip this and move on to the next exercise. Then all of a sudden – bingo! Ideas came for both of my blogs.

After adding the taglines, I could see how just that simple addition not only clarified my stance and purpose for both blogs, but also aesthetically improved the look of each site. I hadn’t appreciated that the title on its own looked naked, bereft. Now, it looks finished, complete. A win-win situation!

With exercise 2 completed, I can now happily move on. Let me guess… you’re curious to know what my little grey cells came up with aren’t you? Well, a glance upwards to the top of this page should reveal: Pursuing my destiny – Maximizing my potential and the Women of Warfare site states: – Victim or Victor – You can choose!

And so, to all adult learners and apprentice dream-achievers – the moral of my experience is: be humble, be open-minded, be teachable.  As the good book says:

 A wise man will hear and increase learning,

And a man of understanding will attain wise counsel (Proverbs 1:5).

Who I am and why I’m here

stack-of-books-1001655_640

Ever since I can remember, I have loved reading.   As the eldest in a family of 7 children, books allowed me to escape into a world I thought was better, more exciting  than my own.

I also suffered from chronic insomnia – quite why that should be so at such a young age (around 11-15yrs), I have no idea.  Stories therefore helped me to cope with the long hours of sleepless nights, the frightening dark which cast sinister shadows upon my walls, the eerie creaking of our house, which came alive at night, stretching and spreading its fear-inducing aura throughout my bedroom, feeding my already over-active imagination. And, as if all that were not enough, to top it all, there were the infernal scratching, scuttling noises made by mice, who apparently suffered from insomnia too!

As a book lover, voracious reader and incorrigible word addict, it is not surprising  I developed a real love of words and that as time went by, I would seek to express this love through my own writing. Decades later, I grasped an opportunity to study a degree course at university as a mature student. My subject? English literature of course!  I was in seventh heaven.  I could eat, sleep and of course, read books to my heart’s delight.

This blog has come about as a result of a best-selling publication: The Purpose Driven Life, written by Rick Warren. It has stirred up a desire within me to discover and fulfil my God-given destiny. It has stirred up a passion to live a faith-infused, God-glorifying and productive life – a life that inspires others (particularly women) to maximise their potential, a life that touches those within my circle of influence with the fragrance of Christ. 

This blog then serves to combine my commitment to God and desire to pursue a purpose-driven life, with my long-held aspiration of becoming a prolific, published writer.

With regard to my writing aspirations, I’ve wasted enough time and procrastinated for more years than I care to remember. The following quote discovered recently, acts as another spur: “opportunity dances with those who are already on the dance floor”.

So, without further ado, I’ve decided to vacate my position as a sad, dissatisfied wallflower who sits at the sidelines of life pretending not to mind that I’m constantly being shunned or passed over whilst I wait in vain, secretly hoping success will single me out and waltz me into the world of my dreams.

I‘m joining the realm of go-getters and opportunity seekers. I’m joining the throng of thriving, jiving participants on the-world-is-my-oyster stage.   Do you wanna join me?