Good morning, good morning good people of my readership
Today is going to be a fun post; I'm going to be walking you through one of THE MOST powerful things you can use, to help you reach your goals both in quizzing and out of it....
Yeup, that's right - lets jump into it!
We all know the saying, "if you don't know where you're going, you'll never get there" or however that goes. And if you've read some of my other recent content, you'll know how strongly I believe in NEEDING to succeed, reaching and exceeding your goals, and being obsessed with both the journey you're in today, and in the end destination you're working towards.
I love being in the mindset of needing to succeed, as badly as you need to breathe. Especially when the understanding of "success" encompasses your entire life - spiritual, relational, financial, emotional, intellectual, etc., etc.. and when our relationships with God are genuinely at the center, an are the foundation of all of it.
Because I'm reminded every single day about how vital that relationship is.
An interesting thought about that; people, including myself, really emphasize the journey, growing and learning, and pushing yourself every day to be better and to achieve more. But all life is really about, is relationship with God. That relationship sums up the "journey of life", because it's through that relationship that we really learn, really grow, and it's BECAUSE OF that relationship that we accomplish things, and become better everyday.
I think that if you could look at every aspect of someone's life, all of the outside things we tend to focus on (e.g. financial stability, career, number of friends/quality of relationships, mental health symptoms, etc.) are just a reflection of what's going on in our relationship with God.
I've said before that our relationship with Him "affects" the rest of our lives, but I think I'm realizing a further extent of that.
And of course, you can't disregard all of the things that happen TO us - all we can do is watch our response to those things. Some things we just can't control, or make better, because we live in a fallen world. But I do believe that even in awful situations, God's love for each of us can carry us through. And the great thing about going through anything like that, is that it's going to become a testimony - one that can touch lives - and maybe even save a few.
Even though we'll be talking about vision, and envisioning things today, I don't think that relationship can be reiterated enough. Without that, nothing else matters. With it, your life becomes even more important than any of us can imagine. I'm a strong believer in how God works through dominos - or "seeds".
So why are we talking about vision??
Your life is important.
So, so, incredibly important.
Man, I personally deal with not always feeling like I have much to contribute, anything original to offer, or that someone like me could possibly change lives.
But dude, God didn't create me for no reason - there is no possible way that I was created for anything less than greatness. Now, that "greatness" doesn't have to be what the world thinks it is. It can look like nothing, to the world, but if I know that I'm in God's will and if I can see Him change even a few people through me, that's what I call greatness.
I don't give a frick if I have money, if I'm recognized by people, or if I have followers.
I'm obsessed with two things, I think: 1) my personal growth, obviously, sorry I talk about that too much lol, and 2) seeing God touch people's hearts with His love.
And I'd sacrifice the first one every time, because my spirit doesn't light up nearly the same.
If you have that, if you've seen that, experienced it, and watched it transform people into the incredible person that God originally created them to be - oh my gosh - everything, everything, melts away.
And I gotta be honest with you guys, I forget that sometimes; I can go days, and weeks, without stopping to listen to the Spirit remind me of it (because He always is). To me, that's crazy, because I know that it's the only thing I'm alive for.
The great thing about that though, is that it's literally endless, so I can run as hard and as fast and as long after it as I want, and I'll never reach the end.
Pretty smart of God to pair my personality up with passion for the unsearchable-ness of His character and love, now that I think about it.
BUT (back to the point) even though I think I know why I'm here, and what's at the center of my purpose, that doesn't make my life any more important that anyone else's. Every single person reading this right now, as been created as a unique reflection of a piece of God's character. As we're in relationship with people, and see/experience that piece of God through them, we all change.
If we're here to be God's heart to people on this earth, how can any of us believe that we are unimportant?
You gotta live right now, you have everything to give.
I want you to be alive. Your heart is so important to God.
If all you did in this life, was live in relationship with the Father, and rest in His hug, that would be enough! What you do, isn't what makes your life important - it's the single fact that God created you, specifically, and He loves you so much.
The value, incurred on your heart, is beyond what I can imagine, or what any of us can conceive.
That value hasn't been given because of anything that you've done, and it's impossible for any more value to added - you're all maxed out! What a good life, and a good God and Father, that even before we were placed on this earth, we were valued by Him as much as He values His own Son.
That thought alone takes away any pressure to do things to try to earn His favor, love, or satisfaction.
So, in conclusion: You have so much to give, because you're so amazingly created and valued by God (not the other way around).
And once we know this, and let that truth get rooted in our hearts, God really starts to speak to us about whatever our specific purpose is while we're still in this world. And, whenever we're ready, and we tell Him we are, we can start to really walk in it, and run with it. Which is SO much fun - even just the tiny taste that I've gotten so far.
To work in that purpose, and work in it for hopefully a lifetime, it's super helpful to work with a vision - to keep us focused, grounded, and ever-growing stronger.
And all that vision really is, is just listening to God about what His heart for you is, and letting Him lead you in that.
Soo, I guess this post didn't end up being really about vision, in the general sense of the word... but I mean, hey, God wanted to talk about something a little different, I guess. And, as always, it was all what I personally needed to hear as well.
He's really good at multitasking, I've noticed.... probably because I'm not very good (yet) at slowing myself down, so He has to. I really need to work on that, actually, haha.
ANYWAYS guys, I hope that God was able to speak to you through this post today, encourage, and love on you. I love you guys so much, and I'll talk to you again soon (new Newsletter coming your way this Sunday!). Keep quizzing, and living victoriously!!
Keep calm and quiz on (and out)!
Your fellow quizzer,
I hope you've had a good week, and a good day, so far! Man, only 11 days into 2019, and it feels like it's been FOREVER since Christmas - probably because we already took our decorations down, and we're officially out of Caramel Brulee at my Starbucks store, but that's besides the point..
A little update/TBQJ News for you:
My editing computer, the one that's been broken for over a month, has an appointment to get fixed this Monday! Fingers crossed that next week I'll be able to FINALLY edit and upload the YouTube videos that I filmed and told you about at the beginning of December (LOL).
UPDATE: it's fixed! I just spend 4-5 hours editing the 4-year Anniversary video, which will be up TOMORROW, and you can watch the trailer for that right here... CLICK ME! And I'll just embed it on this page too, for grins ;) ........
But anyways, let's go ahead and jump into the topic of today's post, which is "OBSESSION"...
I love following motivational speakers/success gurus on social media; Caleb Maddix, Gary Vaynerchuck, and people like this. They remind me about how limitless the possibilities for my life are, and the tools they use (many of which are Biblical values & laws, with different names) have been very helpful in my personal growth this past year.
And if you study either of these people a little bit, you'll find that acquiring wealth is such a SMALL part of their lives. The main goal, the thing that they're really focused on, is impact.
They're obsessed with it.
If you study almost any millionaire/billionaire, really, you'll find that they are 100% obsessed with their mission, whatever it may be.
I love the quote, "As soon as you need to be successful, as BADLY AS YOU NEED TO BREATHE, THEN you will be successful."
If you want to NEED to be successful (so that you get the absolute most out of life), then you're going to have to find something you're obsessed with.
The great truth, is that the purpose God created for you, and put in you, is the ONE THING that you will be 100% obsessed with. And that's a great thing to remember, whenever we're trying to discover God's plan for our lives.
God's given each and every one of us a specific, important, and awesome purpose to accomplish in this life, and He's given each of us something that we will be obsessed over, if we're walking in relationship with Him and know His heart.
I believe in working hard, but I don't believe that we're created to work and toil and break our backs over work that we hate.
I believe in finding what we love, finding our OBSESSION, so that we don't ever have to really "work" a day in our lives - but rather, just enjoy God as we run our race, and impact the lives of His children.
Now, most people don't know what their obsession is. That's pretty crazy (and sad) when you think about it.
That's because before you find your obsession, and I love how C. Maddix says it; "you have to be obsessed with FINDING your obsession!"
That means trying out a ton of things! I remember whenever I launched a newspaper with my home-school group, or got into creative writing so much that I completed two full manuscripts, and got about half-way with two others. I've learned a LOT with just those two things, and I've especially learned a lot through having this blog for the past four-plus years.
Trying a lot of things is the only way to go. And then, once you do find that thing that you fall in love with, you can run with it!
Being obsessed with that thing, being obsessed with making an impact on other people, changing their lives, and sharing the love of God with them - Once you get a taste of that, you won't ever want go back, I guarantee it.
But you might say "people have been obsessed with something, and then dropped off, and quit and given up later. Is 'obsession' really an important key in living a happy life? Does it even make a difference in the long run?"
I don't know everything, but I have developed a need, over the past several years, to figure out the keys to being happy and productive, and having a positive impact on my circle. I'm still working on this, every single day - no lie. It's a subconscious habit now, I think.
The biggest key, of course, is being in relationship with God, and talking with Him throughout the day. Letting Him love on me, and teach me about my true identity, is so important, and so powerful, especially when my identity has been disfigured during the day by negative thoughts and conversations, or hurtful people #CustomerService (you feel me? LOL).
But one of the smaller keys, which has been very, very helpful for me, is INTENTIONALLY keeping myself OBSESSED with my work. Can I really do that? Yes. How do I do that? I'm glad you asked (LOL), I'll tell you...
Asking myself what the desired end result will be, and what it will feel like, once it comes.
Graduating highschool, specifically improving at my job, connecting with people and making new friends, creating online content, and any new project that I feel like God's leading me into.
And also, just deciding that I'm GOING TO BE obsessed with it. Deciding that I am going to ALWAYS give 112%, be FULLY present, and work harder than anyone else, and become the best, no matter how long it might take!
I love that so much.
When you do that, that's when it seriously starts making a difference in your life, longterm.
Because it's actually a major shift in the way a lot of us think. Going from just doing enough to get by, to the EXTREME mindset of high performance that I just described, is HUGE! So it's going to make a huge difference.
Find within yourself - or create, within yourself - a desire to be the very best version of yourself. And for me, because I am very competitive, I also feed a desire to excel and be the best, period.
Encourage and nurture a love for excellence, and the belief that you can achieve it - ON A DAILY BASIS, even.
You weren't created by a mediocre God, or in the image of a mediocre God. Man, you were created by SUCH an amazing God, that our brains (which are capable of a TON of incredible stuff) can't even BEGIN to comprehend His goodness, power, and character!
When I think about that, it blows my mind how much I doubt myself sometimes, and how much other people doubt themselves. It's crazy how much we limit ourselves, and count ourselves out of the race at the very beginning, and FOR NO REASON AT ALL!
What would happen, if each us really understood how capable God has made us, and we walked in that confidence of capability?
What would be different in our lives?
Think about that for a second...
Guess what? That reality you just envisioned - that's possible! Maybe not some of the specifics, but the core of who you were, and how you acted, is possible. Relationship with God, learning your true identity, and creating an obsession with excellence through confidence, are the three things that are going to get you to that spot.
I love you guys so much... and I hope you got something out of this post, and that God was able to speak to you through it. I got a little excited and pumped up while writing it, so I hope that didn't scare you away at all :P.
Keep a look out for that Anniversary Celebration video coming tomorrow, and if you haven't signed up to get my Newsletter every Sunday afternoon, you totally should - I'll leave the link for that right HERE :P. I'll talk to you guys again soon, but in the meantime, keep quizzing and living victoriously!!
Keep calm and quiz on (and out)!
Your fellow quizzer,
Obviously, this post is the second part of the post I published a few weeks ago - So if you haven't read that one yet, I would definitely encourage you to do that :P Click HERE for that post!
But if you did see that post, we're going to continue talking about really using our time in high school, to get a jump on working in our God-given purposes, and making a difference in the world. Arnd all of that starts with 1) having a personal relationship with God, 2) realizing the urgency of our situation & acting on that, and 3) being led by God into the work He'll use, to affect the rest of His children.
But what about after we start?
Today we're going to be talking about the process of actually FINDING our specific purpose, and PRACTICAL things that have helped me to work towards it, even as I'm in high school.
Lets get into it!
One of the biggest things for me, in regard to figuring out what God's made me to do, is realizing these three things:
1) He wants me to know, and isn't hiding it from me for any reason, 2) it's a GOOD purpose, something that I'll absolutely LOVE and enjoy, and 3) I don't have to reach some level of perfection, or a certain age, before I find out.
That being said, which is absolutely true, it is also true that God reveals things to us EXACTLY when we need to know them. I don't think that I'm going to find out EVERYTHING about what I'm going to do, or where I'm going to go, all at one time. Oftentimes, God gives us the next step, and not a whole lot beyond that - and that's okay.
It's really easy to feel like we have to know everything, so that we can "prepare" and "plan" for it. But the thing is, is that if we're following and walking in relationship with God, then we will be in the place of growth God wants us to be in, whenever He brings in new opportunities for us.
Man, even in the last four years of running this blog, I've felt sometimes that I'm ready for a bigger audience, and felt eager to reach more people. But thank God He doesn't just give us what we necessarily want in a moment, but instead prepares and gives us what's BEST for us.
Because the bigger my audience is, the more pressure there seems to be to hear accurately what God wants to say. I don't want to say anything that's not God, but I am human, so I'm sure I've spoken by myself several times.
Thank God for growth!
I know that when I'm ready for something else, it'll be here, and I'll walk right into it. Because of that, I don't have to know the WHOLE plan - I just gotta know what God wants me doing right now.
And also, I think a reason why God doesn't show us the whole picture at once, is because He's calling us to SUCH great things that we either 1) wouldn't believe it, or 2) be intimidated and scared of ever even taking the first step.
Another thing that has been really helpful to me, is that verse from Psalms that says to "delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart". As we live in relationship with God, and start to become like Him, we will involuntarily start wanting the things God wants. So if we're walking with Him, we can safely say that if we have a desire to do something (and it doesn't go against the Word, of course!) we can go for it!
And now we're going to start talking about these practical things I've learned and am learning, about how to work towards your purpose EVEN in the midst of high school craziness.
1 - Learning about hard work
Probably first and foremost, what has helped me to get a lot done this fall (and beginning of winter...) is learning how to give 112% as much as I can. Being fully present in my work, giving my all, and not looking back, or considering that I could give less, or try any less hard.
There are several keys I've learned about doing this, and getting better at it every day. Here is the main one:
Hard work is something God wants us to do, it's part of being made in His image, and it's the only way we will fulfill His purpose for our lives. It blows me away that some people think that as Christians, we don't have to work/work hard. They like to emphasize that "on the seventh day, God rested!" But here's what I say...
God worked the other SIX DAYS. In addition, Jesus says that His Father is "always at His work, to this very day" in John. So I have a huge conviction that hard work is a big part of the christian life. That may be because I've had to come along a pretty long road, to come to this conviction.
Hard work is my happy place; going for 17 hours/day, pulling 11-hour shifts at work, sprinting through five lessons of math to get ahead, I love that stuff. Because I struggled for YEARS, and years, from not having motivation, or a lot of push from outside influences. Not working makes us stagnant, unhappy, and unfulfilled.
We were created to work, to thrive, to learn, and to excel!
And if we're following God's plan for our lives, we're going to have a lot of impact through that!
2 - Learning about real rest
You may or may not have guessed this, but like a lot of other people, rest has been more difficult for me to master than hard work (even though I haven't even mastered that yet :P).
It's tempting to just "rest" by turning off our brains with some entertainment, social media, etc. for a while. And sometimes, turning our brains off for a few minutes and then turning it back on can be helpful! But ideally, we would be in such a close relationship with God, that we don't need to.
But what I mean by "real" rest, is just doing some things that rejuvenate your energy - emotional, spiritual, physical, and mental.
For emotional rest, spend some time with the closest people in your life, and just enjoy each others' company. Spiritual rest is very similar; spending some time to focus on JUST resting in the Father's arms, and not doing anything else. Letting Him talk to you, and talking to Him about some things too. That time is powerful! Physical rest, of course involves doing things like stretching, going on a hike, getting some sleep if you're sleep-deprived - stuff like that. And finally for mental rest (which is VERY MUCH affected by the other three), soothing music, releasing stress and anxiety to God, and maybe even not making yourself read an extra chapter.
Hard work is awesome, but the thing is that it's impossible to do forever, if you don't take care of yourself - one of the ways we do that, is through rest. And on that note...
3 - Learning how to be consistent
Anyone can work hard for a week, or a month. But ONLY the ones who are consistent, are successful in what they want to do, and what God's called them to do. Like we were just talking about, rest is probably about half the battle in learning how to be consistent. Another part of it, is learning how to enjoy your work...
And enjoying your work can be difficult, especially when it's something you didn't want to do in the first place, or just don't feel like doing in the moment. I'm so thankful that I'm in a place where I can learn how to do this right now. I do of course have a favorite thing to do at my job (making the beverages, shocker :P), but I really don't like being miserable for a whole shift if I'm not on bar.
So the key to that, is trying really hard to FIND something about your work that you do like, and then just focusing on that while you do it. I personally don't like being at the window and on the headset, because it's just a lot of customer service, and I'm still getting better at being a conversationalist, and connecting with people. But I'm learning to be grateful for that time, because it allows me to practice those things, so that I can get better, and eventually be REALLY GOOD at it.
If you do that, then it'll get easier to work really hard, and for longer periods of time, and more consistently! And plus, it'll just make you happier too, because you're reminding yourself to be positive, and choosing to think like that, and that's awesome! That can turn your life around, right there.
Well guys, I hope that you enjoyed this post series, and that it helped and motivated you!
The last thing I want to leave you with, is that "working towards your purpose in highschool" should be fun. It should be the thing that gets you up in the morning, and if it's not, if it's something that you dread, there's something deeply wrong.
If you do have a problem like that, or even remotely similar, I want you to leave me a comment, or shoot me a note on the "Contact Info." page. I would love to talk with you about it, and share what I've learned and am learning about it, because we've all been there - but none of us have to stay there.
Man, I love you guys SO SO much, and God loves you SO SO SO much more! Keep quizzing, and living, victoriously, beautiful kids of God!
Keep calm and quiz on (and out)!
Your fellow quizzer,
HELLO HELLO HELLO!
OH my gosh, it has been a hot second, huh? Haha well, in the words of Jim Moriarty, "Did you miss me?" AND, for your convenience, I am not going to waste your time "explaining" and making excuses for myself. (*whispering*butIhavebeenworking50to60hoursaweek).
ANYWAYS! Guys, I am here, and I've got so many cool and exiting things planned to share with you, (including a post/video about that terribly webinar situation #TEA) (Sorry I don't even know if that's how you're supposed to use that term, LOL) And fun events for this community of quizzers to enjoy online.
If you think about it, the community of quizzers is pretty unique, in the fact that we all know each other pretty well, BUT we all live like across whole STATES if not across the entire COUNTRY from each other. Because of that, I think that the best way for us to grow closer, enjoy being around each other more, and all that, is through the internet, which I have been trying to build over the past (*pauses to count*) almost four years.
Dang, that's crazy.
BY THE WAY, our official four-year anniversary is going to be on November the 17th, which is a Saturday this year! We're going to do something special for it, but I haven't quite decided what yet... feel free to leave an idea for the celebration in the comments!
So lets get into the topic for today:
"On To Bigger Things Now?"
Since I just said that I'm excited for the things I'm going to be doing with this platform in the very near future, I'm going to go ahead and guess that you assumed I'm sticking around. That assumption, my friend, would be correct! I have to confess, I have considered finding someone to take over for me, and continue to use this platform to positively affect those in (and outside of) the quizzing world.
I mean heck, I love you guys, and we've been through a lot in the past four years.
For instance, you used to have to put up with me writing the whole post in ONE PARAGRAPH. Man, you guys the MVP's haha!
What the "Bigger Things" phrase is about, is kind of about my ambition, which is REALLY hard to keep up with a lot of the time. I am a very driven person, and I'm driven by passion, wherever that passion may be placed at the time - making good videos, being a good leader, learning a new job, getting good grades, placing well at quizzes, etc. You name it.
Often though, my ambition to do bigger and greater things all the time can get ahead of me, and I find myself trying to grow too fast, and do things that honestly, I just haven't grown into yet.
Writing a devotional book, and setting up an online support system, and an operation that sends boxes of encouragement tools out to people, is one of those ambitions that I worked MY TAIL OFF on, during this summer. It was a REALLY fun, exciting, good thing to work on, but in the end, I just can't handle all of that, at once, right now and in this season.
It's really hard for me, sometimes, to downsize my dreams to fit where I am in my growth. I don't know why that is, but it's true, and it literally HURTS when I consider doing that.
Unfortunately, this can lead to just not doing it at all, because I actually CAN'T. Which sucks, LOL.
BUT THE THING IS, I just have to focus on what I CAN do.
And whatever that looks like for me in this season, I am committing to walking in, right now.
I want to take hold of, tightly, what I've been given, and what I can handle TODAY, and multiply that through my passion. I want to, and I AM GOING TO, live in such a way that my passion and ambition work FOR me, instead of against me.
And as simple as that may sound, it seriously kindles a fire in my gut that's been sitting cold for the past few weeks/month, and I can't even express my excitement for starting this.
Well, I will be letting you guys know all of the cool and exciting details for what this next period of time with hold, very soon (probably in the next week or so *fingers crossed*), so of course I will see you again shortly.
IF you would like to get more updates, and encouraging content from me, you can register for my Newsletter, right HERE
I love you guys, and I will see you again soon - Keep quizzing and living victoriously!
Keep calm and quiz on (and out)!
Your fellow quizzer,
Here is my brand new YouTube video, I had a fun time filming and editing this one (sorry it took so long...), so I hope you enjoy it too!
Here is where you can get FREE access to that printable Resource Library, and sign up for those Newsletters: CLICK ME!
Love you guys, and I'll see you again soon!
Keep calm and quiz on (and out)!
Your fellow quizzer,
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Mallory is a sixth-year Teen Bible Quizzer originally from the Southern region, and now in the Northwest, quizzing over the book of John with her three younger siblings. <3
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