Everyone has a voice. It is one of the most powerful things we can use to effect change. It’s the best way to reach out to people – sharing your story. Growing up was tough for me because I felt nobody understood what I was going through. There were no blogs or special websites I could visit to read the stories of people who were going through the kind of things I went through. Then I found Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul and it felt like I found gold. I read stories about people I had never met and will never meet. Their stories were like mine. They gave me hope. They gave me a reason to believe things will be better.
This little ‘rat-race’ of life makes a lot of us to lose focus of our ultimate purpose. We live selfishly, seeking to make money for ourselves and our family only. I used to fall into this category of people. I wanted God to bless me for me. I wasn’t concerned about that girl next door who had to deal with the ugly side of her parent’s divorce. I had problems of my own to deal with. Now I know better. I look back and I wish I had reached out to that girl. I wish I could have told her that she would eventually overcome the issues she was dealing with only if she stayed strong. I wish I could have given her my shoulder to cry on. There were many others like her. I truly wish I had used my voice to bring comfort into their lives.
A friend of mine recently started a blog about her experience as a single mother and I was proud of her. I can just imagine the number of lives she will touch just by putting up different posts about the challenges she faced and continues to face. Although I have not personally gone through the things she writes about, I still feel inspired by her posts. Reading her blog further proved to me that if we are willing to take a step outside our comfortable world, we can impact lives like we have never dreamed of.
I’m sure someone reading this is saying, “Doyin, that’s easy for you to do. You are a writer. I don’t write.” Can I tell you something? It doesn’t matter. I’m sure my friend never considered herself to be a writer before she started her blog. She just wanted to reach out to single mothers out there. That’s always the starting point; the desire to reach out. The medium or platform you choose to use is secondary. As you become open to the idea of reaching out, you will find various opportunities springing up for you to do so. You just have to keep your eyes open. One of the things I prayed for regarding 2015 was for God to send people my way that I could be a blessing to. I also asked Him for more opportunities to bless people. I have started seeing the answer to that prayer. Last week in Church, our Senior Pastor announced that the Church will start a new outreach which he called prayer evangelism. We’ll go out to the streets and just pray for people. Something leaped within me when he made the announcement. That’s the kind of thing I was praying to God for. I am still on the look out for more opportunities to bless people.
Live a selfless life this year. Make all the money you want to make but remember that person on your street who doesn’t have any food to eat. Remember that girl who needs to hear your story to know that there is always light at the end of the tunnel. When you help people who can’t help you in return, the feeling of fulfilment you get is indescribable. It is simply priceless.