That word stirs something in me every single time I hear it or read it. 

Inspire. Inspiration. Inspiring.  Inspired.

Whatever form it comes it, it moves me.  In my world, there is no higher compliment that I could give to a person, movie, book or situation than to say that it was inspiring. 

One of the definitions of the verb inspire that Google gave me says, “to fill someone with the urge or ability to do or feel something, especially to do something creative.”  On Merriam-Webster’s website it also says “to influence, move or guide by divine or supernatural…to spur on…to exert an animating, enlivening, or exalting influence on….”

You get the idea.

And I guess this word causes so much emotion inside of me because deep down more than I want my life to be anything else, I want it to be inspiring.  For many years, when I was younger especially, I chased that “one thing” that was going to be my “big moment.”  It was going to look like the movie Rudy or The Gladiator or even The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.  Someday I was going to be faced with one of those do or die moments, and I would choose die in the name of whatever was my cause and that would inspire and enable me to leave the kind of legacy that I thought mattered.

I probably watched way to many movies and read far too many books. 

Nevertheless, even though my aspirations have changed quite a bit since I was a young girl, I still have that deep resolve that my life matter…that it makes a difference…that it inspires.

Now don’t get the wrong idea about me. I am no saint. I make mistakes daily. I am selfish.  I am at times narcissistic.  I get caught up in my own little “first world problems.” I am judgmental.  Believe me, I am as human as the next person.  But what I do have is just this desire to know that I didn’t waste my life.  Life is short.  Time with loved ones even shorter.  Moments with strangers the shortest of all.  And, I guess I just want to know that I am making all those moments, time, and experiences the absolute richest they can be.  

If I am totally honest, though, I have struggled this year to understand what that needs to look like.  I see people all around me doing HUGE, BIG things for the kingdom of Christ, for their neighbor, for their communities, for their families, for those in need, and I am just trying to figure out why my life doesn’t feel so epic.  I see daily pain and suffering all around me, not just here in Guatemala but in the states and in the Middle East and in Greece and in Africa and really just all over the world, and I am asking myself what to do about it.  How can I make a difference in a sea of so much hurt? How can I have a voice more than just posting a few articles on Facebook?  How can I be a part of inspiring change?


Last weekend, though, I had an opportunity to visit one of the sweet girls that I had cared for prior to her moving out on her own.  She was recently married and then just last week gave birth to a beautiful baby girl.  The doctors had told her she was having a boy, so it was quite the surprise to her when she gave birth to a little girl instead.  I was anxious to see both mama and baby, so only the day after she arrived back at home, we made the trip over to visit her. 

Is there anything like a sweet little newborn?  I hugged mama, and then she passed that sweet little thing into my arm.  As I gazed into her precious face, I asked her mama what name she had decided to give her.  She looked me straight in the eyes and said, “Sara Estefania.” 

“Sara? You really named her Sara?”

“Yes, I named her Sara.”

The tears started to stream down my face.  This beautiful young woman gave her one and only child my name.  It was too much for me. 

I hugged that sweet baby close and prayed words of life and blessing over her sweet body. 

This week I have been reflecting on that moment over and over again.  My news feed has been filled with so much ugliness, hate, and pain this week.  I once again started asking God to show me how to be a part of bringing healing to all those broken.  How can I be a part of producing change? Where is my place?  What is my platform?  What am I supposed to do?

But it’s as if He has been whispering to me quietly all week that isn’t about a platform or epic moments or being in the right place or even about being an inspiration for the masses. 

This life is about moments…this moment, the next one, and the one after that.  Its about investing in and inspiring and loving the ones that God placed right here around me. 

It’s about the dinner table. 

It’s braiding hair and playing catch. 

It’s providing a meal for the young single mom who is working overtime just to make ends meet.

It’s listening without judgment. 

It’s sacrificing time, space, money, resources, in order to help someone who has none of those to spare.

It’s just being ALL IN right where God placed me.

My long awaited “epic moment” may never come.  I may never do anything worth writing about in the history books.  But, I am more and more convinced that if I really want to inspire change and do something about all the ugly that I see in this world, then I have to get right the things that I am doing in my own circle.  I need to inspire, teach, lead, and love well those that God placed right here next to me.  No one in this world will feel my influence, for better or worse, more than my own family and community…no one.

So yes my friends stand up in the face of injustice.  Please we need you on those front lines.  Protest, write letters, give money, bring awareness, use your hashtags, highlight wrongdoings and advocate for change.  We can’t grow weary of doing good just because it’s hard. 

But don’t forget your own village…your own tribe…your own community…your own family. 

Inspire in them the change you want to see in the world. 

I don’t know why that sweet girl named her baby after me.  Maybe she just thought it was a pretty name.  I hope it was more than that. I hope that I had impacted her life in such a way or INSPIRED her in such a way that she wanted the legacy of that impact to live on in her baby. 

But even if that isn’t the case, it doesn’t really matter, does it? 

Does it really matter if anyone ever remembers Sara?  Does it matter if my legacy is far-reaching and widespread? 

No it doesn’t.

It doesn’t matter if mine is or yours is.

What matters is that in the face of evil and heartbreak and brokenness, we chose love and light and laughter.  Laughter!  We chose to stretch out our hand to our neighbor, our friend, our church, our community, and most especially to our sons and daughters, and said, “This world is ugly. I may not be able to fix it all, but I’m sure not going to let you go alone.  Let’s do this together.”

It’s a lot more romantic thinking about a big EPIC showdown. It’s a lot more motivating thinking we are going to be the next Martin Luther King or Mother Theresa or whoever else inspires and empowers you. 

However, without taking an ounce away from those amazing individuals, I think that we have to stop waiting for our platform to do something.  We have to stop thinking that we have to “save the world” in order to make a difference.  We have to quit comparing our efforts to those of the person next to us.

You are right where you are for a purpose and for a reason.  Don’t squander THIS MOMENT and THIS TIME. 

Be an inspiration to those that know you best.  Show those that see you struggle the most how to get back up and try again. 

Be the change for them that you want to see in the world. 

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Some bits and bobbits about this blog...

This blog is mostly just ramblings by yours truly. I talk about my ups and downs being a wife, mother, and missionary in Guatemala. I have a tendency to get off on "soapboxes" as those who love me say but it is my desire that this blog can be a place of encouragement in each of your pilgrimages with Christ. At any moment if this blog becomes more about me than about Christ, than it will be done and please help me stay accountable. To God be all the Glory, Honor, and Power!

Books I am currently reading...

  • Eight Twenty Eight
  • Interrupted
  • The Connected Child
  • This Momentary Marriage
  • Unbroken

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