And who knows but that you have come to this royal position for such a time as this?
If you ever read the book of Esther, you know this verse (Esther 4:14). Esther is your stereo typical rags to riches Cinderella story – a commoner who steps into the Queen’s shoes. Raised by her single uncle, she’s chosen due to her beauty (don’t even get me started on the ancient selection process) to be Queen above all the other women in the ancient kingdom. For the first few chapters, life is good for Esther…until it’s not. Her uncle informs her of a wicked plan to wipe out the Jews. The King doesn’t realize what that plan would mean for Esther and for her people. The future of the Jewish community is literally on her shoulders. In a heated moment, her uncle pleads with her, “And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a times as this?” In the end, Esther does save her people. Despite her fear and intimidation, she acts anyway, she intervenes and justice is served.
A month ago, I found out my job of 13 years is ending. Things were going good until they weren’t. I don’t know what my professional plans will look like moving forward. However, one thing that has been on my heart is to spend time encouraging women. I can literally close my eyes and envision your faces, faces of real-life women. My Rockstar female colleagues working their butts off and still feeling like they aren’t enough. I see you and I’ve been there. My friends balancing work and parenting, trying to ignore the sneaking suspicion that they are missing the mark in both roles (you are hitting the target, YOU ARE DOING GREAT!!!). I’ve been there. Neighbors ladies cruising by with a stressed half-smile on their face. They’re Monica “breezy” and panicked at the same time (if you don’t get that reference, I may not be your blogger). They are put-together and on the fringe of falling apart. I hear their inner voice, “send help and wine!” I see the school moms peeling out of the elementary school parking lot to the next thing on their to-do list. They are closing a deal over the phone, creating their must do list for work, submitting an online grocery order and handing a snack to a live human buckled into a car seat directly behind them. I saw a woman today at Costco pushing a cart with two kiddos. She was talking someone off the parenting ledge. She was simultaneously content and so lonely. I see my friends longing to be a mom and everything that goes with motherhood. I also see them wondering if they are enough of a contribution to the world without the “mom” title (YOU ARE, we need your exact gifts and talents). I see your faces and I want to send love and encouragement to you. I want you to know that I’m proud of you. I want to tell each of you that YOU ARE enough. I want you to know that I see you trying so hard. I see you give so much to so many people. I want to encourage you wherever you are right now.
You are enough. You were made on purpose. You are doing great work in the workplace, in the community and at home. You are worthy of hustle and success. You are also worthy of rest. You deserve to be pampered and invested into. You deserve encouragement. You’re trying your best and I notice it.
In this time of transition for me. I’ve made the decision to take advantage of “such a time as this.” While I don’t know what’s next, I do know that God is tugging on my heart to serve you – to EncourageHer. Over the past few years, I started writing love letters to myself. They turned into love letters to you. It’s helped me to process my own feelings and emotions. It’s been a gift that I’ve given myself. But I know now, that in such a time as this, it’s time to share my heart with you. I write to you because you represent me. I am you – you are me. I’m all those things I’ve described. I’m trying to do it all. I’m a woman – mom – wife – sister – daughter – business professional and child of God. I know the feeling of sincere pride in who I am. I also know the feeling of shame. I know that I’m enough and I remember the times I couldn’t remember if I was anything. I also feel that the tools and resources I’ve harnessed are tools that everyone of us should be leveraging. Over time, I want to share my heart with you and I want to share the tools with you that have served me well over the years.
I also want to use this platform to challenge us as a community of women to find time to serve and encourage each other. If I learned anything in the last few years, I learned that as women, we need to be intentional about this. I want to start today. There are a group of women that in the hardest times, encouraged me. I’ve learned from you how meaningful that is.
I also want to encourage the men reading this. I can’t speak to your experience but I know you feel the same way. You may never express it but you feel it. And if you aren’t into feeling your feelings, it doesn’t mean this isn’t for you. You likely have a mom, sister, wife/girlfriend, daughter, friend, coworker, team member that you can encourage. You can EncourageHer. You can see and acknowledge what she brings to your family, friend group, work environment while holding down the freaking fort at home.
Over the coming weeks, I’ll be sharing more on this blog. I’m terrified to do this work. It’s scary. It’s vulnerable work. Having said that, I feel that this work is an act of spiritual obedience for me. What do I need to do right now? I need to EncourageHer.
Because who knows, I’m in this position for such a time as this! Are you?