Having It All & Still Feeling Empty

Have you ever driven a car with a full tank of gas and the next minute you look down at the dashboard, you see that you're on E?  That's what happened to me.  One minute I was full of life, thriving and prospering on the road to destiny and the next minute I was empty.  It wasn't a depressed or sad type of empty, but rather one where it felt like a piece of myself went away.  I felt like my soul had abandoned me--I was going through the motions of life and operating separately from my true identity.  I remember one day in particular I asked myself, "How is it possible that I had more peace when I was broke, unemployed, living with my parents, constantly receiving rejection after rejection letter?  How is it possible for me to be living in my dream city, working for a great company, affording a great lifestyle, having a flourishing love life and yet feel so bare?  How was the one who had nothing had everything and the one who had everything had nothing?  How was it possible to have it all and still feel empty?"  After doing some deep reflecting and soul searching, there's only one word that came to my mind: purpose.

 I'd like to think of purpose as the gasoline in the car--it keeps the car fueled.  It allows the car to take you from Point A to Point B.  The more gas you fill into the car, the further it can take you.  If there's no gas in the car, it's impossible for the car to make it to its destination.

Queens, pursuing purpose will keep your mind and spirit fueled and rejuvenated.  It will guide you to your destiny.  In fact, purpose is required for you to fulfill your life mission.

 My emptiness began the moment I sacrificed the pursuit of destiny for the temporary fulfillment of distractions.  I haven't written a new blog post in 8 months, and to be honest it was very hard for me to write this one.  Because so much time had passed, I thought it was too late for God to use me.  I felt like my anointing left me and I lost my gift.  Looking back, I never lost either of those things.  I lost myself.  And as soon as I silenced the noise around me, I was able to reconnect with my soul and see that the gifts and anointing still lived within me.  I struggled between who I was and who I was called to be.  I held on to this self-limiting belief that I wasn't perfect enough and deserving to have a platform to share my story and empower others.  I forgot that the reason why I started this blog was to have a place where women can go and know they're not alone in their struggles, imperfections and weakness.  That together, we can share our personal stories, trials and victories, and ultimately uplift and empower each other to be our best versions.  

 “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.  That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9-10).

 I love this scripture because it reminds me that power is perfected in weakness.  Passion is birthed from pain.  And Pain will open the door to your promised land.

 Queens, sometimes we are our own worst enemies.  We poison our precious minds with self-limiting beliefs of doubt, fear and unworthiness to keep us from stepping out of our comfort zones and being all that God created us to be.  We talk ourselves out of following through on our commitments and we use these excuses to find comfort in our mediocrity and complacency.  Every downfall and obstacle you face is not always a trick of the enemy trying to through you off.  Poor choices and lack of obedience will always lead to un-fulfillment and self-destruction.    I don't care how much money you make, how amazing your bae is, or what kind of car you drive.  You can have it all and still be empty.  You can live a full life and not be fulfilled.  And sadly, you can exist in this world without actually living.

 There comes a point in life where you realize your purpose is much larger than yourself.  You begin to treat it like a requirement instead of an option.  Some days I ask myself, what if Madame CJ Walker didn't see beyond her $1.50 investment?  What if Oprah believed the people that told her she could never be on TV?  What if Rep. Maxine Waters didn't have the courage to challenge inequality?  What if Shonda Rhimes decided to put down the pen?  What if Michelle Obama and Loretta Lynch never attended law school?  What if Beyoncé quit singing and dancing after losing her first competition?  You are uniquely and wonderfully created to leave an imprint in this universe.  Don't you know that lives are depending on you?! You have the capacity to change this world. 

What self-limiting beliefs are holding you back from pursuing your destiny?  Are you waiting for some grand moment for someone or something to tell you, "Now is the time to do it"?  Are you still waiting for this dramatic "aha ha" moment where you hear a loud voice telling you what you should do and when?  Are you stalling for perfection?  Are you seeking other people's approval and validation?

Obedience and discipline should not be contingent on your circumstances.  I remember thinking, "well if God would change this, then I could finally do that."  Or better yet, I was waiting for God to show me "how" and lay out every step/detail.  I wanted to know the master plan, as well as all of answers to the "what ifs" because I secretly feared the unknown. 

Reality Check:  Sometimes, God will only reveal step 1, and you won't know what step 2 is until you've completed step 1.  That's what walking in faith means:  taking a leap without having the full picture or context laid out in front of you.  It's the assurance of all things hoped for and the conviction of things not seen.  It's trusting and resting in God's promises and moving forward without having every detail.  

This is the season where we embrace the unknown and step out on faith.  This is the season where we revive our souls and dreams.  This is the season where we master the art of discipline and consistency.  This is the season of transforming into our divine identities and walking toward our destinies.  Stop waiting on perfection.  Stop waiting on having it at all figured out.  Stop waiting for others to validate your gift and calling.  Stop waiting on your emotions to give you permission.  Stop waiting for someone to give you the green light and approval to start.  Start the business. Drop the weight.  Write the book.  Enroll in that university.  Apply for that job. Cut off that hater you call a friend.  Launch the podcast.  Close the door on your ex.  Paint the picture.  Start planning and creating that big event.  Get that certification/license.  Whatever calling that has been placed on your life, just do it Queen.  

"The trouble is you think you have time" (Buddha).  

Time is one of the most unappreciated and undervalued gifts we have.  One of my biggest mistakes in 2017 was thinking I had an unlimited supply of time.  I've procrastinated, delayed and remained inconsistent in pursuing the things that God's placed in my heart.  To this day, I'm still haunted by my unexecuted ideas & visions.  I'm disappointed in knowing that I am the only reason why I'm not further ahead.  I remember one night I was shown a glimpse of what life would be like and how I would end up if I continued to abuse my time and abandon my calling.   In that very moment, I decided that I would no longer let fear and procrastination shape my reality.  I re-immersed myself in the presence of God so that I may be reminded that I am the daughter of the Living King and as long as I open my mouth wide to Him, He will fill me up (Psalms 81:10).  I was reminded that despite my reality and the struggles I face, my God will do exceedingly above all that I can that ask and think.  He will raise me up on eagle's wings and renew my strength and inspiration.  And that's when I took action and started writing this post because I was reminded that believing and praying wasn't enough.  Faith without work is dead.  You have to be committed to operating in your gifts and working toward your destiny.

Life is a series of choices that become a series of events.  Your tank doesn't become empty on its own; you have to drive it to that point.  Don't be so distracted with the traffic and noise around you that forget to pull over and refuel.  Having it all has nothing to do with the possessing the tangible pleasures of this Universe.  It's about having love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.  It's about being rooted in purpose and using your gifts and talents on a daily basis to pursue a destiny larger than yourself.  It's about knowing your divine identity and not defining yourself by the labels and titles given to you.  I challenge you to reclaim your time and confidently walk in the direction of your dreams.  You can do all things, Queen.