- Posted December 27, 2012 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Impact Your World
Thinking and Thanking...
I was out on Christmas day for the bulk of the entire day. I decided to stop in at Applebee's to pick up lunch to bring back to the hotel. While I was waiting on my lunch, the hostess started to converse with me about where I was from. I was sharing with her that I am from the USA but currently live in South Korea. She seemed to be interested in what prompted me to move to Asia and continued to ask questions. The more she asked, the more I shared about life, career, travel, and ministry. She finally said, "Madam (a very common term of endearment here in the United Arab Emirates), I hope you don't mind me asking. But how old are you?" I looked at her and smiled; pondering the more frequent response I get when I tell people my age which typically leads to a discussion about singleness. When I told her my age, she looked up at me with a look of astonishment and said, "Thank you. You have really inspired me. I want to be just like you when I am your age." It was a shocking response; one that I did not expect. She went on to tell me that she had just turned 21 years old and moved from the Philippines to Dubai six months ago to find work. Additionally, she lamented over how she didn't think she would ever be able to go to college or how hard it seems to get ahead. While fighting the swelling tears in my eyes, I remembered that I was her age when I began to travel the world. Then, I saw the "door open" to share with her not only my story and testimony, but also the motivation behind my passion, my pursuit, and my purpose. I went on to tell her that my journey wasn't easy and that it certainly isn't for the faint at heart. I worked...hard. When others were sleeping, I was working. While others were playing, I was studying. And while others were partying, I was praying. The truth is, at her age, I was just sowing seeds. I didn't know it at the time. I had no idea that I was sowing seeds then for what I am reaping today. I encouraged her by letting her know that with the same dedication, motivation, and perseverance, she CAN be like me when she reaches my age. Life is about choices. As the old adage says, "You do what you have to do today so that you may do what you want to do tomorrow."
Now on to deeper matters...As I imparted wisdom into that young lady, I was moved to the point of tears for two reasons. One reason is that I was able to look back over my life and chart my journey; really see just how far God has brought me. I have literally gone from walking amongst drug addicts and prostitutes in the ghetto to locking arms and serving along side some of our generation's greatest leaders. My eyes have seen things that my grandmother only dreamed or heard about. How grateful I am to God for this! But then there is the other reason...It always amazes me how many people are inspired and motivated by the choices I have made in life or by "who" they perceive me to be. But often times, they don't see the price or sacrifice it costs me. I love to share and encourage people. Those things are often put out on Facebook, Twitter, or Tumblr for free. At best, it may cost them about $4.99 for a copy of an eBook that I am working on releasing. But what many people fail to realize is that the wisdom that I share costs them nothing to receive it. However, very few people realize that the very things that I share with them cost me my very life. They were hard lessons; they cost me everything. Selah.
I'd like to take the time now to thank all of you that read my blogs and posts; those who comment and encourage me to continue. I so appreciate you!!!