Hope Wissel

It’s All About Who You Know

Thank you Mary Southerland for today’s message….

We adopted Miss Becky and she adopted us. My husband was the pastor of a church in South Florida and our family lived in Texas. Miss Becky became a grandmother to our two children and a precious friend to me.

I took our two kids by Miss Becky’s apartment every couple of weeks. We always went to McDonald’s for lunch. I tried so hard to take her to a nicer restaurant, but she was not having it. She wanted a fish sandwich, French fries, and an orange soda – from McDonald’s.

After lunch, Miss Becky invited us back to her home for a visit. Translation? Jered took care of any needed repairs while Danna and Miss Becky made cookies. My job was to be there. To talk with Miss Becky and simply share life with her.

One afternoon, Dan called to tell me that Miss Becky was in the hospital having tests run on her heart. I made a beeline for that hospital … but on the way, I stopped at McDonald’s. Yep! I got a fish sandwich, French fries and an orange soda for Miss Becky – food that was probably not on her cardiac diet. But everyone deserves a treat if they are in the hospital. Right?

I approached the information desk to find out where Miss Becky was. “She is on the fourth floor – the cardiac unit. But I don’t think they will let you see her since she was just admitted.” So, I headed to the fourth floor.

When the elevator doors opened, I hid the sandwich and fries in my purse and began patrolling the hallways until I found her room. I spotted her clothes and shoes – but no Miss Becky.

I headed to the nurses’ station and said in my sweetest voice, “Can you tell me where Becky Sullivan is? She is not in her room and I would like to see her.” The head nurse smiled and said, “Well, she is down in Nuclear Medicine having tests run, but you can’t go down there.” So, I went down to Nuclear Medicine.

When the elevator doors opened, I was standing in front of Nuclear Medicine. So was a security guard. Arms folded across his massive chest, he glared down at me and said, “You cannot come in here!” He then spread his arms across the doorway. I ducked under his arms and came face to face with George Hererra, my neighbor. He had just been transferred and was now head of nuclear medicine. When I explained my mission, he grinned and pointed to Miss Becky waiting to be taken back to her room.

I strutted … yes, strutted past the guard and said, “Goin’ to see Miss Becky!” She loved her McDonald’s treats, and I learned a valuable lesson.

All of a sudden, I was somebody because I knew the man in charge.

You may think you are a nobody.

You may doubt your worth.

You may try to find your value in what you do – not who you are.

Beginnings are very important! In fact, the place of origin has much to do with the quality of the journey as well as the final destination! My journey – like yours – began in the heart and mind of God. Before I took even one breath, God wanted, loved and planned me. That same truth applies to you. You are no accident! You and I were created in response to the love of God and according to His plans. God did not “accidentally” create us and then step back in alarm to say, “Oops! I created her. Now what am I going to do with her?” The plan came first.

There have been many times in my life when I doubted my worth and value. I filled every waking moment with activity – good things – thinking that if I did enough good things, I would be good enough. It didn’t work. I can never be good enough to earn the love and favor of God. The good news is that I don’t have to be! My worth and value rest in the fact that I am chosen by God. I am loved, wanted and planned by God Himself. Wow! God Himself supervised our formation. We were created for an intimate relationship with God.

Psalm 139:14-16 “I praise You because You made me in an amazing and wonderful way. What You have done is wonderful. I know this very well. You saw my bones being formed as I took shape in my mother’s body. When I was put together there, You saw my body as it was formed. All the days planned for me were written in Your book before I was one day old.” (NCV)

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Relax, Reflect, Recharge

You Are Worth More

Thank you Sharon Jaynes for today’s message…..

As a little girl, I never felt I was worth very much. I always felt that I wasn’t pretty enough, smart enough, or good enough. I sensed my parents tolerated me, but certainly didn’t delight in me. And if your own parents couldn’t love you, then who could?

Then there was the definitive day in the eleventh grade that took my self-worth to an all-time low. I can still remember what I was wearing: lavender bell bottom low rise jeans, a bubble knit short-sleeve top, Dr. Scholl’s wooden sandals, and a blue bandanna tied around my head of long oily hair I hadn’t had time to wash that morning. This was acceptable attire for teens when I was in high school, except for the days when a special awards or recognition assembly was held.

In homeroom that morning, the principal announced over the intercom that an unscheduled assembly would take place at eleven o’clock to recognize students being inducted into the National Honor Society. That’s when I understood why so many of my friends were dressed a notch above the norm. Their parents had received the secretive congratulatory call the night before and made sure their kids had washed their hair and left the frayed jeans in the drawer.

Four hundred teens found seats in the darkened auditorium. The principal made a speech of commendation from the podium and then said, “Will the following students come forward when your name is called to receive a certificate and a candle to be lit by last year’s inductees?”

The principal called each name, and I watched several of my friends walk across the immense stage. Then, to my horror and surprise, my name was called. Why didn’t my parents warn me, I thought. I look horrible—and I did.

When the houselights went up, I panned the back of the room where proud parents snapped pictures and pointed out their progeny to others standing on tiptoe to catch a glimpse. My parents were not among them—they never were.

I later discovered that my dad had received the call from the school the night before, but forgot to tell my mom. Even though they both worked across the street from the school, they didn’t come to the ceremony. In my mind, their absence confirmed what I’d suspected for the past 17 years. I’m just not worth the trouble.

I didn’t care about the certificate or the principal’s accolades. What I really wanted was to know I had value to the two people who mattered most.

Perhaps you had painful experiences in your past that left you feeling worthless, but Jesus wants you to know you have great value. He gave His life so that you would!

Jesus said, “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny?” he asked His disciples. “Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows” (Matthew 10:29-31, emphasis added).

You are worth more than the money in your bank account.

You are worth more than the number of friends you have on Facebook.

You are worth more than the number of followers for your Twitter account.

You are worth more than the number of meetings and appointments on your calendar.

You are worth more than your successes or failures.

You are worth more than your level of education.

You are worth more than the price tags in your closet.

You are worth more than your accomplishments or lack of them.

You are worth more than many sparrows.

It took many years, but finally I took hold of Jesus’s words: You are worth more. That’s what he wants you to know today.

If you believe it, leave a comment and say, “I am worth more.”

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Business Tips and Tricks

Pick My Brain

pick-my-brain1When I saw a blog entitled “No, Don’t Pick My Brain”, I had to laugh. Thank you Adrienne Graham.  See I have always said to people, pick my brain because I am not good at sharing all the stuff in my head. I love writing my blog. I love talking with people and sharing tidbits of information I have learned. I love to share information on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and LinkedIn. Some would think I share too much, right?

The author talked about the cost to maintain my brain. She says “My brain costs money to maintain. There’s training, classes to attend, reading (I have to buy books), gaining certifications, costs of memberships so I can network, attending conferences and mastering my skills all cost me money. I have to protect my investment. How fair is it to me to give away all the knowledge I have acquired which I use to make my living, pay my bills and eat?”

Please don’t misunderstand –  I’m am by no means going to stop sharing.  See I love to share information and I know at some point,  I will reap the benefits of helping others.  I have never learned how to put a value on my time and my knowledge.  When I was doing consulting work for non-profits, you know grant writing, program development, etc. I got paid for it – it was my business.  But part of me always “over-shared” or so some believed.  I share with everyone who wants to know how to do things – from writing a blog to fundraising and even some of those old skills like grant writing and program monitoring.

As I move back into being self-employed, someone said “you need to stop giving people information for free”, really?  Being in direct sales and having a small but growing team, I think sharing is invaluable.  I love this quote by Zig Ziglar:images-1

I have lived this way all of my life, so why change now, right?  Yes, I am self-employed. Yes, I need to pay my bills.  But I do believe if I continue to help others, God will provide for me and my family.

Despite the goals or business ideas some think I should follow, they aren’t in my heart.  I am thrilled for those individuals who move into coaching and are getting paid for their time and talents.  As for me, I will be the one who let’s everyone pick my brain – within limits.

So what do I get when someone asks for just an hour of one-on-one time? Or someone asks me to come to lunch so they can run some ideas by me?  Where do I draw the line?  The truth is, I am not sure at the almost ripe old age of 60, if I will ever know where to draw the line.  But based on some suggestions from the author, I may do some things a little different:

  • Believe what you know is valuable. If it wasn’t then why are they coming to you? You’re their chance to solve a problem or find a solution has value.  Believe in myself is a definite YES!
  • Create a fee schedule.  I will never say never BUT as for now, I don’t see this happening.
  • Decline lunch/coffee invitations unless they are strictly non-business. So, this isn’t going to happen for me.  I love to share what I have learned and even more excited I remember things given the MS memory issues.  
  • Keep it light. Give the why and what but never the how. This is definitely not for me.
  • Exchange for equal value.  This is one I can do…If someone asks for help, I need to feel comfortable asking for a referral or a party or a lead to an event.  Assess what they have which can be of equal benefit for you.  Okay so this means stepping out of my comfort zone and ASKING which is one of the steps in being Accountable this year.
  • Ask them for a paying referral.  This is not for me unless of course they know someone who would LOVE to have a party…
  • Don’t back down. It’s hard to say “no” and I am only going to do it when it compromises my core values.  I will not let people push me to do things. “The minute you compromise you devalue yourself and your expertise.”
  • Know your worth, understand your value. 

For those who are coaches (or want to be), these are amazing tips and a good book.  I actually wrote this blog in January 2014 with a much different tone.  I was ready to embrace all of these ideas but life has brought changes.  My focus had changed and I am embracing the “giving back” side of me… the side of me I love…..

Share your thoughts… Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!