Today is my birthday, so I wanted to take a second to thank you for reading Forholy and share some birthday wisdom. I may be young (or younger than some), but I've learned a few great lessons in the last 28 years.
1. Surround yourself with the thinking that outthinks you.
I have a confession. When I first started Forholy, I thought I was more grounded in the Word than I was, and I didn’t have many Christian friends. It wasn't until I started surrounding myself with fellow believers, who were more knowledgeable in the Word than me, that I began to see how much I needed to grow in my walk with God.
Surrounding yourself with the thinking that outthinks you will force you to either sink back into your comfort zone of mediocrity or swim with the sharks who will help guide you to the next level.
2. Embrace transition periods.
People often ask me what I do for a living, and recently, I've been chuckling (to myself) at the question. What do I do? If you asked me a few years ago, my answer would've been, "I'm a fashion designer."
Now…my answer is a little different.
In October of 2016, I decided that I was going to truly embrace what it means to wait on God for direction. In waiting, I’ve been occupying my time with passion projects and freelance jobs.
I'm in the most vulnerable place that I've ever been—totally dependent on God. And to be honest, it’s been an extremely humbling experience.
Starting my own men’s fashion company was in my nest of comfort. I had complete faith in my ability to make things happen. But sometimes God must strip you of your nest in order to give you His best.
So, what do I do? I'm a fashion designer and writer who is waiting on God for the next direction.
3. Relying on God doesn't make you weak or dumb, it makes you smart and wise.
I've never had a Christian mentor before. In fact, I still don't. So, when one of my mentors told me I was flawed because I was taking the back seat and waiting on God to give me direction, I felt weak and discouraged.
I had to rebuke those feelings.
Proverbs 3:5-7 says, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take."
Just as you trust a GPS to get you where you need to go, when you trust in God with all your heart, He will be the GPS of your life. And unlike faulty technology, God will never steer you the wrong way. He always knows what’s best for you even when you don’t understand what He’s doing.
There’s nothing wiser or smarter than relying on the intellect of God (who created the ENTIRE universe) because His path leads to a victory that no one can ever take away.
4. Don't be afraid to share your struggles.
My highest viewed post, I struggle with sex, but I’m a Christian, came from sharing a major challenge that I've had as a Christian. As it turned out, many of you have had the same struggle.
It's comforting to know that there are other people who understand exactly what you're going through. When you share your challenges, you’re able to get the encouragement and support you need in your walk with God.
And no, you don't have to share the intimate details of your life with everyone, but it's always best to have at least one person you can confide in. A closed mouth doesn't get fed.
5. Ask important questions.
Asking important questions is an art that shows your level of understanding. You learn more from asking important questions than from receiving the right answer. Good questions allow you to think beyond the surface and dig deeper.
If you want to know more about God, ask questions that will lead you to gain a deeper understanding of who He is.
If you want to know more about yourself or others, ask important questions, and you’ll not only find out interesting things, but you’ll also become an interesting person. How you think says a lot about who you are.
6. Don't compare yourself or anything about your life to someone else's.
Remember the movie, The Water Boy? Adam Sandler’s mother (in the movie) said everything was “the devil.”
In 2017, she would definitely say that social media is the devil. It's so easy to get distracted by the "success" of others. Comparing your life to someone else's is a trap.
You might think to yourself, "My life doesn't look like so and so's, and we graduated college at the same time." Well, It shouldn't. Everyone's journey is different. You don't know what that person is going through, had to go through, or is about to go through.
Stay focused on God and your own life.
"Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else. For we are each responsible for our own conduct." —Galatians 6:4-5
Wait, wait, wait is all I've been hearing God say lately.
"I’m tired of waiting! When is it going to be my time?" I asked God while praying.
I had a very impatient moment last week. You know, when you’re trying to cut a deal with God because the wait is real.
If you’re anything like me, wanting to manipulate things to your advantage is second-nature to you, but God already has a perfect plan and doesn’t need your help. He’s already making provisions for you. All you need to do is wait.
Not having something is far better than having the wrong thing. This is especially true if you’re waiting for a husband/wife. I would much rather the seat be empty than have the wrong person sitting in it.
In moments of weakness, remember what the Word of God says. "But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint." —Isaiah 40:31
8. Have faith in God, not in yourself.
I was watching a video last week, and the man speaking said, "Don't have faith in faith, have faith in God." Wow. That hit me hard.
I was never one to lack faith in myself. No one could tell me anything...ANYTHING...when it came to my dreams!
About 4 years ago, I spoke at an event and confidently told everyone in the room that I was going to be a 24-year-old multi-millionaire. I truly believed that, and I wasn’t obsessed with money either. Having an abundance of resources was just going to be the obvious result of my grind.
I wanted the people in the room to believe that anything is possible.
I've always been blessed with the ability to think big, not just for myself, but for those around me. My faith in faith was big enough for everyone's dream or vision.
I believed in faith so much that I didn't leave room for having faith in God to do the impossible—I was going to make things happen myself. And the crazy part is, I didn't even realize I was leaving God out.
Well, I'm 28 now…and no, I'm not a multi-multimillionaire. Laying down my own will for God's was the best decision I've ever made. My ego had to die for God to live in me.
Having faith in God and living in accordance with His promises is the key to success in any area of your life. His promises are not like a horoscope—hit or miss. They will come true with 100% accuracy.
9. If something takes less than 5 minutes to do, just do it now.
This one is pretty self-explanatory. Save yourself the stress that comes from procrastinating—just do it now.
10. Your wisdom.
As a birthday gift to me, would you take 60 secs to share some wisdom with me? What's the best piece of advice you've ever received? Head on over to the discussion page on the blog.
I look forward to hearing from you :).