Few people I meet would define their lives as exceedingly abundant. Instead, sadly, most describe a stuck-in-a-rut, barely-getting-by existence. I do not believe this is what we were made for.
Most definitions of abundance refer to a degree of plentifulness or ample quantity. I like the word image of life to the full, or the biblical picture painted in the 23rd Psalm, where it says, “My cup runneth over.” Though rare, I’ve seen people who exemplify a life to running over the brim.
Thomas Edison is one of those people. But not because he had a perfect life, or because everything ran smoothly.
He spoke from experience when he said, “I have not failed. I have just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”
He also said, “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”
I would add, “Most people are not plugged into the reason they exist. They don’t understand the more they were made for.”
I understand how this feels. In my new book, Exceedingly: Spiritual Strategies for Living on Purpose, with Purpose, and for an Abundant Purpose, among other true stories, I share a few of my own. And for the first time, I wrote about the secret revelation surrounding my identity. I’m going to tell you a little about it today.
It started with a Facebook message from an acquaintance. The question she asked me started a cascade that changed my entire life. I discovered that most of what I believed about myself wasn’t true.
“Do you know someone by the name of _______________?”
Stunned, I wrote back, “I think that’s my dad. Why do you ask?”
It felt like forever before she answered. Finally, a new message came through. “I’m so sorry. I thought you’d tell me this was a distant cousin or something. I had no idea he was your dad. I’m not sure if you knew this or not, but I’m adopted. I found my birth mother shortly before she died. This is the name she gave me.”
Stunned, I had to catch an emotional breath before my friend and I met a couple of nights later. I took notes on the details she had, but stopped when she asked, “Would you see if your dad would take a DNA test with me?”
That one was tough. I hadn’t seen my dad in a few years. My parents were divorced and he had moved on, mostly leaving his former family behind. Oddly though, I was flying out within the week, and planned to visit him on that trip. Still, asking him to take a DNA test was not something I felt comfortable with. And when I told my mom about the request, what she said made the thought feel even more awkward. Much more!
“She wants me to see if Dad will take a DNA test with her,” I said.
My mom’s reaction wasn’t what I expected. When she suggested that my brother should test with my friend, and then changed the subject, something made me ask what I believed was a rhetorical question.
I was chuckling when I blurted out. “Dad’s absolutely my father. Right?”
I waited for her laughter in return, but instead, she began to wail. That’s the moment I found out my paternity was in question. Within two weeks, I received the DNA results. I was shocked to discover that my dad is not my biological father.
You can read the details in Exceedingly, but for this episode, the entire story isn’t my point. It’s what I went through in the days following the revelation about my identity. When I was in the throes of grief, I struggled with a recurring thought, I’m an accident, and I should not exist.
It took time, but eventually the truth began to seep in. A close friend said to me, “God sure must have wanted you to exist. You are the only person with your exact mix of DNA on the planet.”
Her statement, along with some other dramatic moments, finally convinced me of the truth. I exist on purpose, with purpose, and I was created for an abundant purpose. I believe the same is true of you.
- Look at your history and search for emotional lies that have convinced you there’s no purpose for your life.
- If you have not figured out why you exist, go on a quest to unearth the reason.
- Allow yourself to believe you deserve an abundant life.
How are your dreams connected to the way you view yourself?
This episode’s Dream Tending Tips:
- Stop settling for a stuck-in-a-rut, barely-getting-by existence. Pursue your abundant purpose.
- Does your cup run over? If not, how can you start refilling yourself?
- Have you ever gotten close to success, but then things got dark, difficult, or dangerous, making you quit?
- Remember, it’s never too late for a fresh start with fresh faith. If you’ve given up on your dreams, consider resurrecting them.
- If you’ve tried and failed 9,999 times, resolve to go for 10,000.
- Dreams and purpose fit like hand in glove—unlayer one and you’ll find the other.
- You exist on purpose, with purpose, and for an abundant purpose—if you don’t believe this already, dare to discover yours.
Grab the Tending Your Dreams’ free giveaway at tendyourdreams.com/freebie37 for your gift, just for tuning in. I also have some special eBook pricing for you.
Type in the code TYDeb50 to get your copy of 4×4 Habit Overhaul, or One Minute Intervals™: Sixty Seconds to a Healthier, Foodier You, or Depression Busters, at over half off the normal price. Purchase a book bundle using the same code, and save even more.
But ACT NOW, before this special eBook discount offer is gone.
Until next time, remember, your dreams are waiting for you to grab and tend:
Never stop believing.
Dare to dream bigger.
Host Anita Agers Brooks can be found on various social media platforms, and you can discover additional dream tending tips at tendyourdreams.com.