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Name: Linda

Location: Texas

I am a wife, mom and grandma. I am doing what I've wanted to do all my life. I am a Christian and I love the Lord.

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Tuesday, May 22, 2007
Celebrating Me - Woman to Woman

Today Morning Glory and Lei are hosting another Woman to Woman post entitled “Celebrating Me”. We are to write about our individual strengths. I think some of us are having a bit of a difficult time with this one. I don’t know what it is about us, but we seem to be able to talk freely and openly about our weaknesses and failings and are very hesitant to talk about the strengths we have. I really should just speak for myself – I find it very difficult to talk about my strengths because I am my own worst critic. I so often don’t live up to my own expectations.

However, enough of that negative “stuff”. This is meant to be a positive post, so here goes…. For me it is easier to think about any strengths I may have in the light of my walk with the Lord. I may possess certain abilities, but unless I channel them through Him they can often become a distortion of what they ought to be. I believe the enemy would like to take our gifts and use them in his way thus taking what God meant for good and making something far different of them.

I’ve taken that test that tells you what your gifts are a couple of times now and it always says exhortation and mercy are my dominant ones. I think that’s right. My dear friend M. chastised me once when I said I didn’t have any gifts. She said I was a great “encourager” and that I had a lot of wisdom. Then the Lord just took that and began to whisper that into my spirit over and over again through different people and circumstances.

So…encouragement is one of my strengths. I think it is because I have a very optimistic outlook. I tend to see the glass more than half full most of the time. If I ever do get a bit down or discouraged it just doesn’t last very long. In fact, in my more dramatic teen years I would try to be appropriately (I thought) depressed over things, and I just couldn’t carry it off. My spirit always seems to want to soar. It makes it easy to encourage the people around me. I can easily see the good in others or in difficult circumstances. I seem to be very sensitive to the feelings of anyone I’m around.

I think that brings me to my other strength – mercy. I pick up on the feelings of others and feel compassion for them. I have great sympathy for those who are struggling and always long to make things better. I have to be careful because I can sometimes feel compassion where it isn’t appropriate. I find that I don’t judge others harshly but rather I can understand how they managed to get in the mess they’re in.

I’m a creative sort of person. I love knitting, crocheting, tatting, and embroidery – needlework of any kind. I have always enjoyed learning new crafts. I like to write. I love to dream big dreams, but I am also learning to be content with who I am.

I have come to understand that I don’t have to do something “huge” to be of value. Rather I just need to let the Lord use the strengths He has given me – in His way and in His time. I may never write the next great American novel, but perhaps I can write a comment on someone’s blog that will encourage and uplift. I will never be famous, but if I show mercy and tenderness to the people in my life I will have left a lasting legacy.

  posted at 12:43 PM

At 1:02 PM, Blogger An Ordinary Mom said...

Being able to encourage others, possessing an optimistic and positive attitude that is contagious to others and having wisdom are some mighty fine attributes to celebrate!

At 2:08 PM, Blogger Linds said...

Oh Linda, I can see you so clearly in this post. Your great gift of encouragement and compassion are right there for all of us to see, and to benefit from as well. I have loved reading of how we are all struggling to write good things about ourselves - we are not alone!

At 2:15 PM, Blogger Lei said...

"I have come to understand that I don’t have to do something “huge” to be of value. Rather I just need to let the Lord use the strengths He has given me ..."
Oh, I just love that! I should put that up on my fridge... or start a Woman to Woman quote of the week on my blog. Really, it's so well worded!

I am married to a very merciful man and it is such a rare quality. I can truly appreciate that in a person.


At 2:23 PM, Blogger Dawn said...

I can't believe how far behind I am and how many good posts I have missed out there this week. This one, as usual, was lovely.

I had to laugh at you trying to be depressed as a teenager. I always tried to stop talking - especially if I was upset about something. I wanted somebody to notice and ask me what was wrong. I could never pull that off either!

At 2:25 PM, Blogger Dawn said...

I just caught the post below - we were in San Antonio for church convention a few years ago and just loved having a room above the River Walk. It was in July, though, and I'd love to down there in the spring. It actually rained so much that they had to shut down the incoming water, so we didn't get to take a ride. We also got stuck in the Dallas airport for the night because of the rain - something I never expected. Snow yes, but rain?

At 3:18 PM, Blogger Susie said...

Your warm and caring nature shines though in this post. I'm so glad that you put your thoughts on this topic out there to share with all of us.
I just know we'd be great friends IRL!

At 4:04 PM, Blogger Morning Glory said...

Linda, you pulled it off. I'm so glad you decided to write about this because you certainly do have wonderful strengths and abilities. Not just everyone can express compassion and caring. To be able to open your heart to people in this way is a very wide doorway for the Lord to step through.

At 4:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My daughter is an encourager and it's been hard even at 9 years old, to find the beauty in herself. I think encouragers give so much that sometimes they don't have enough left over to encourage themselves. The nice thing about good friendships, is they return the love and hopefully encourage you back! It sounds like you have that kind of friendships!!

At 4:28 PM, Blogger Michelle said...

what a great post! I think that's a wonderful thing to do - admit to ourselves what our strengths are!

At 7:00 PM, Blogger Montserrat said...

I'm a cheerful optimist too. I've tried to be sad only to fail miserably. You did a great job writing about your strengths but still acknowledging where they come from. . .the Lord.

At 8:30 PM, Blogger Dawn said...

Your comment to me today was such a blessing. Thank you so much. DC and I would love to be volunteers in missionary service after our retirements. That has been a dream for awhile. Interesting that you thought of it.

Taking piano lessons and swimming lessons would be a good thing as well.

You are such an encourager to me!

At 8:36 PM, Blogger momrn2 said...

Yep, I'd say you know yourself pretty well and hit it right on the head.

Encourager and compassionate are definately part of who you are!!! ;-)

At 11:04 PM, Blogger Susie said...

I would have to fully agree that you are a wonderful encourager. I also think you are a brilliant writer. I love everything I've seen you write.

At 11:57 PM, Blogger Myrna said...

Very thoughtfully written! The world can certainly use more encouragers. In fact, the rest of us would be nowhere without you folks.

I love your teenage "depression" comment. I can remember acting like I didn't feel well just to see if anyone would notice. My Dad was too smart to fall for it! Teenage drama!lol

At 12:05 AM, Blogger Penless Thoughts said...

Being an encourager is such a wonderful attribute and certainly one to celebrate. Thanks for your post I enjoyed it.

At 5:43 AM, Blogger Lori said...

I think one of your stength is uplifting others though your blog post.

At 8:12 AM, Blogger PEA said...

I loved this post Linda...you also have a gift with words and you don't know how often your words have touched my heart and soul! You are a person I'm so happy to be able to call "friend"! xoxo

At 10:22 AM, Blogger Terina said...

i live in san antonio! i found this woman to woman a little difficult to write too. i really enjoyed reading yours!

At 10:24 PM, Blogger eph2810 said...

Linda, this is so beautiful and I whole-heartedly agree with you. You are a wonderful encourager. You always lift my spirit. And your posts are always so full of wisdom. I am so glad that the Lord has crossed our paths.
Thank you so much for sharing from your heart.

Be blessed today and always.

At 6:27 AM, Blogger Gran - (Angela) said...

It is apparent in your post that God has definitely blessed you with amazing gifts/strengths. Your words are such an inspiration to all women.
Have an AWESOME Day!

At 10:21 AM, Blogger retha said...

Going through my pages from long ago, I came to this post of yours. Remember the "woman to woman" it was pleasant interactions.

You wrote on your post;
"...perhaps I can write a comment on someone’s blog that will encourage and uplift."
That is exactly what you did for me, then even now.


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