Turn Rain Into Rainbows
Early in my professional life, I was laid off from my job. I’d been working in marketing for a staffing agency until 9/11 happened, and, down a long line of serious devastation, a youngster in Dallas, Texas lost her job. My own insignificant yet significant loss in no way compared to the lives that were lost on that unforgettable day, but, in my own little world, the loss of my job came with its own sadness.
To top off losing my job, there were no jobs. I started hustling up work with production companies to generate some income to pay my bills. In effort to minimize those bills, I leased an apartment with a friend who, as precious as she was, rocked in her professional life but, in that season, really struggled in her personal life. So, this hard working, college educated gal was drumming up business with no prospect of full-time employment and living in an environment that was far from what she knew to be normal. To say the least, it was a really, really tough time for me.
I felt like a failure, I mean, a complete and total failure. The checks from the work I’d generated were very slow coming in, but, of course, the bills made their way in with ease. One particular day, I rushed to the mailbox only to find an overdraft from my bank to the tune of $207.64. I panicked and thought, “What do I do?” So, humbled beyond words, with tears in my eyes, I called my Mom and shared my story. She said, “Jilly, this is small in the big scheme of things and it doesn’t define you. You WILL get beyond this and be better because of it.”
A pep talk from Mom and a $250 loan she never wanted me to repay later, I found myself transitioning from tears of sadness to tears of joy. Suddenly, light came through the window I had been sobbing in front of 5 minutes earlier and shined directly into my heart. I literally prayed aloud to God in thanksgiving for His provision. Then, I sat down and wrote the following…
Free To Be
Open the day with prayer, remember, this is how we hug God.
Let your prayer not be ritualistic but from the heart.
Take a moment to read, breathe and meditate.
You might learn something from that precious inner voice who’s been
awaiting your company.
Serve yourself breakfast in bed and imagine you’re in a far away land. Reflect upon the journey and embrace the magnificence of home.
Develop a game plan for your day,
and make sure every strategy is aimed at winning souls.
Get ready for the day as if you were getting ready to receive a Grammy… excited, prepared, grateful. Moreover, make sure you wear a smile- no designer outfit can compete with that.
Forge into the day with purpose, passion, confidence and humility.
You will speak to and reach a multitude of people.
Eat a light lunch, but don’t take lunch lightly.
World hunger not only exists in Africa, etc. but in America, too.
Drink more water, eat more fruit and how about those vegetables…
Now, that would be a stretch.
Hey, start your own ‘meals on wheels.’
That homeless man or woman on the corner could use nourishment
just like they could use a dollar bill.
Take a siesta. Dream of a world filled with love, peace and harmony.
Then, wake up and make that dream a reality.
After all, we are all superhuman;
we just resist our own God-given power.
What we think, say and do puts into motion our own personal realities.
What an enticing statement for we closet visionaries.
Finally, be yourself.
That, in itself, is revolutionary!
It was literally as if rain was transformed into rainbows. Free To Be, in a way, was my own Psalm. Out of what was a pretty dreary time, God showed up as He does ALWAYS. Grace is the most significant of all gifts that are free to us. I marvel constantly at how God can take a dark time or mistake or even a series of mistakes and use them in a powerful, transformative way.
As we look toward the New Year, I hope that instead of thinking about all the things we “need to change” or “need to do,” that we’ll instead embrace the wonder that we are, connect the rain to the rainbows and rejoice in the grace that we are given every second of every day. Life is to be lived. It is not to be looked back upon with regret. As Maya Angelou said, “When we know better, we do better.” My own personal challenge and the challenge that I extend to each of you is to let go of the things that weigh you down. Lighten the load. We need to be nimble and ready for all that’s good and true and new.
In this last day of December 2014, I wish you all love, joy, peace, good health and prosperity in the New Year! Remember, you were made to shine, and, while you’re at it SPARKLE, too!
Comments are closed