Wednesday 11 April 2012

And here's what I know

I get an email everyday from the John Maxwell team with a link to a video where John talks for one minute on a given word.  And he always includes the comment 'And here's what I know ...'

And here's what I know ....

.. that there are times when there's a book to read or a course to follow.  Sometimes I buy a book and it will be months or even years later before I read it and the content is just what I need to read for that moment.  I believe that God brings us to points in our lives where we can deal with revelation or knowledge that will help us for the season of life that we're in.  Ashes to Beauty was one of those courses that was set for such a time.  I have posted before about the fact that I was reluctant to start Ashes to Beauty because of my lack of completing things.   However I signed up and I am so glad I did.

Admittedly I haven't finished the creative side of the course but I have finished the journaling side.

I didn’t answer some of the questions partly because they didn’t seem relevant to this season of my life and partly because God took me off in a different direction.     

God took me off on a journey to find out more about myself and how He has designed me.  I read Holley Gerth’s ‘You Are Already Amazing’, Florence Littauer’s ‘PersonalityPlus’, Bill Johnson’s ‘Dreaming With God’ and Marita Littauer’s ‘Your SpiritualPersonality’.  

In doing so I came to a better understanding of why I am like I am, and who I am meant to be.  Through ‘Personality Plus’ I came to see that my personality make up of primarily Perfect Melancholy mixed with some Powerful Choleric is how I was meant to be and that those personality traits I had thought were faults,  (because I don’t quite fit the mould that I feel others try to squash me into), are okay and it’s okay to be me.  I don’t have to be the life and soul of the party, I don’t have to want to spend time with people, it’s okay to be good at organising things etc, etc.   This is very freeing because it means I can spend time being me instead of fighting being me.  And whilst I don’t think I’m ever going to be totally tidy it does explain why I find the chaos of some of the rooms in our house really difficult.  They need to be organised!

So to sum up the course, I wrote a  Life Purpose Statement in the light of what I’ve learned about myself.

Life Purpose
I am created by God and called to have a relationship with him.  He asks me ‘to do what is right, to love mercy and to walk humbly’ with him. (Micah 6:8).   I am significant, secure and accepted.  I am ‘fearfully and wonderfully made’. (Ps. 139).  I am made exactly the way God wants me to be, with the personality traits, strengths and gifts he wanted me to have in order that I might express my faith and love for him through serving others, by bringing freedom and encouragement to those in need, and by giving glory to God through my creativity.

In this current season of my life I believe God’s purpose for me is to develop a relationship with him based on my better understanding of myself.  This includes resting in him and finding peace instead of rushing about doing works for God rather than listening for what he would like me to work with him on.

With regard to my creativity, I have been drawn towards classes and books on creating art with the help of the Holy Spirit.  I started Paulette Insall’s class before Christmas and I bought the books ‘Finding Divine Inspiration’ and ‘Unlocking the Heart of the Artist’.  This is a particularly Perfect Melancholy way of approaching it!  I believe that I needed to work through Ashes to Beauty in order to better understand myself so that I am now in a position to move forward into creating art for the glory of God.  I have acquired the skills and techniques to be able to do this, I just need to do it.  It is time to stop doing classes filled with techniques and use the knowledge I already have.

Having said that I am going to Art from the Heart this weekend to attend a technique based mixed-media workshop.   But I booked that some months ago! 

As we learn more about ourselves we peel away the layers that we have built up around ourselves to protect ourselves from the outside world.  Sometimes peeling away the layers can be painful but it's always worthwhile.

Whenever I think of layers I think of this:

I hope you will leave a comment telling me what things you have learnt about yourself lately?


  1. Bernice, I am so very humbled by this post! I still remember our conversation before you even chose to be part of the journey... And I remember thinking: "this journey is meant for someone just like her", yet I really thought you were not going to join. When I saw u did, I became very nervous and all sorts of doubts came to play in my mind- but GOD had a plan and He brought it to be!!
    I have been blessed with seeing how God walked you through the valleys and unto your mountain tops. May you never forget the beauty He has already shown you! May you always say to temptation: "I don't want to be like anyone or anything else; let me be the woman Christ made me to be! "
    Love you dear sister! More than u will ever know... :)

    1. Thank you Nana for your encouraging comments. Love you too!

  2. I really love how much you put into your life purpose. I also feel led to stop learning and to start doing! Not that I have stopped taking classes, some are necessary to accomplishing my dreams but I've stopped doing some just for fun. My brain is already full of ideas so it's time to create. I've learned that one of the reasons I wasn't before was the fear of failure...well, no more!!!

  3. Bernice, I LOVE your statement, our journeys aren't too far off from eachother. Looking forward to seeing where God leads you!!
    PS love that Shrek scene, LOl

  4. I love this post Bernice! I have that personality Plus and have not read it yet - someone gave it to me, I might actually read it now! LOL!

  5. Thanks Bernice, not only for everything here, but for encouraging me to do Ashes to Beauty as well. Like you the big thing I realised during it was that the first call on my life is a call to relationship with God. Everything else comes from that. I love how you say 'I am made exactly the way God wants me to be'. If only we really believed that I am sure so many of us would be different people. I know I would.


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