Recently I was talking with a woman who helped raise more than 200 kids.
NO! They were not all biologically hers. Nor were they foster kids.
These were more than 200 kids and their friends that for the past 20 years have called her Mom.
It started out like most stories, small and mostly ignored by the larger community.
Yet over these past 20 years, she and her husband have poured their lives into the lives of these kids.
Some have become doctors, lawyers, police officers, firefighters, pastors, youth leaders, members of the military and more.
Some have even gone on to adopt children of their own.
Blinded To The Story Within
As we talked, I told her numerous times that she had a great story and at least one book in her.
She smiled and laughed each time that I mentioned it. It saddened me that she didn’t think what she did would interest others or would have enough themes or teachable moments.
We laughed when I mentioned that if those 200 kids each helped 2 kids (400 additional) and those 400 additional helped 2 kids (800 additional) that would be 1200 kids’ lives that were touched. Like the commercial from when we were younger (see above video).
Hours after talking with her, I realized that she is like most people that I meet and know.
We have become blinded to the story that is within us. The story of our lives and the lives with touch.
As Derek Sivers says “Everybody’s ideas[story] seem obvious to them.”
What this woman and her husband did was just that, “what they did.” They were living it and it just seemed normal.
I don’t know how you could have 40+ kids over your house 4-5 days a week and think that was normal, but she did.
What about you?
What are things in your life that you “just do” and think nothing of it?
Finding Your Story
Trying to find your story does NOT need to be hard.
I talked about find out what you are best at before.
When you sit down to find what your story is, look at your calendar for the last year or so.
Look at your bank statement, credit card bills. Where are you spending your time and money?
Where your money and time go, that’s a pretty good indicator of where to look for your story.
The woman I was talking with mentioned that her family of three was spending about $450 on groceries. Obviously, food was important to her story. Why? She was feeding 40+ kids multiple times a week.
Ask others for their thoughts on what your story is. It might surprise you.
Sharing Your Story
Once you have identified what your story is, you need to share it.
Share the actual story, but also share the principles that you learned from going through it.
While you might not relate to feeding 40+ kids, you might want to know how to stretch your food budget. Could you learn from this woman? Certainly.
Can she share how to talk with teens and connect? Certainly.
In her story, she has dozens of principles that she could share.
AND YOU DO TO.