My husband and I enjoy visiting farmer’s markets and speaking to the vendors. We always find it interesting to learn about why they are producing and selling their products.
During our travels, we heard several stories that inspired us with their passion. These were the people we wanted to support with our purchases.
One woman had moved far from home to take a high paying job. She worked hard, saved her money and after several years was able to move back to her small hometown with the funds needed to start her own business. The dairy-free cheese and dips she made were delicious. She told us of many trials before the recipes were perfected. Now she was producing a product that was filling a need. She was passionate about what she did and it showed.
Another woman had a small vintage trailer in a market parking lot. We commented on her trailer and were treated to a little of her life story. Michele had a mother fighting cancer. She realized life is too short to be unhappy so took early retirement. Her retirement fund was spent purchasing and fixing up the trailer and doing some bucket list travelling. Now she was doing what she loved, making crafts and selling them at markets. She had a passion for life and living it to the fullest.
These were only two of the stories we heard. Both women had to make sacrifices to follow their dreams. Both told us how much happier they were now they were living with passion and purpose.
When I live with passion, I am better able to support and encourage others wanting to do the same.
Do you have a dream you’d like to follow? What would it take for you to live a life of passion? How can I encourage you?
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So, throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” Mark Twain
I am drawn to campfires. Sometimes I roast marshmallows and other times I am content just to sit near and appreciate the beauty a fire has to offer. I like to watch the flames lick and dance and when they have burned down, I’m enthralled with the glow of the embers.
Our eleven-year-old grandson, Logan, also has a love of campfires. Unlike me, he is not content to sit idly beside one. Instead, he wants to tend the fire, turning over and rearranging the burning logs.
He joined us for a fire recently and, poker in hand enjoyed rearranging the burning pieces of wood. When the flames died down, he used his poker to break up the glowing embers and move them away from the rest of the fire.
It didn’t take long before the glow left these embers, making them look like lumps of coal. Logan commented on this and we told him to move the dark pieces of charred wood close to the larger ones still showing the red and orange of fire within. Pieces recently removed ignited quickly; ones that had grown cold took a little longer. Some needed to be completely surrounded by the pieces with fire still alive inside them. Eventually, all of them burned brightly again.
I have had experiences where the flame of passion for life has died down. Just as an ember removed from the fire grows cold, the same happened to me when I distanced myself from other believers. I discovered the colder I became, the longer it took to reignite my spark.
This is a good reminder to surround myself with positive, encouraging people. Together we can fan the flames of potential each of us carries. As followers of Jesus, we can be the spark that points others to His love and light.
(Jesus said) “For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” (Matthew 18:20 NIV)
I am an avid shell collector. Some of my shells have colours and markings that are well defined and the surface is perfect with no flaws or cracks. I have a few more shells that I believe are the same type as these and once also must have looked good on the surface. The difference is that this second group is ones that have been broken and the inner parts are now visible. Strange as it may seem, it is the ones that I can see inside of that I’m most drawn to.
Again, I relate this back to life. When I put up a good front, all you see is my surface. Unless I become vulnerable and let you see inside, you will never really know me. I may look quiet and reserved on the surface, but deep within lies a heart with a passion to make a difference. I want to encourage others to see their own beauty and worth, to know that they are valuable and have a life worth fighting for.
In order to do this, I need to be vulnerable and share my heart. Jesus has done amazing things in my life since I gave him control. He wants me to share this with others. By sharing his love with those I encounter, they too will be able to see themselves through his eyes. Jesus loves each of us as though there were only one of us. He loves us just as we are, but far too much to leave us that way. I am living proof of the change that can take place when someone was open enough to pour his love over me, and I can oly pass this along by doing the same.
I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may kjnow the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. Ephesians 1:18, 19A NIV
Words, whether written or spoken have great power. When used positively they can encourage, support, inspire and light a fire in someone’s heart. The negative use of words can deeply wound, cause loss of confidence and extinguish the passion in those same hearts.
I know that I have been on the receiving end of both types of words. Some of them have caused me to question my worth. Others have shown me that I have more value than I believed.
As much as I hate to admit it, I’m sure I have used words as weapons that have caused others pain. These days I consciously strive to make my words positive and uplifting.
It is no accident that God is referred to in the Bible as the Word. His words in this book of instruction, point me in the way I need to go. The more I listen to Him, the more I am able to reflect his love to those around me. His whispers into my heart light the passions and purpose that have been placed deep within me. It is only by listening to and following his words that I can live the life I was created for.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. John 1:1 NIV