We are celebrating one year here at The She Laughs Project! I can hardly believe that just one year ago a small, scary and “full of unknowns” step of faith took place and launched She Laughs. I have learned a lot over the last year and some of my lessons have brought great joy while some have brought great pain. Through each lesson, strength has been on the other side. I believe many of us are women who have God dreams and gifts. Those God-given dreams and gifts, although exciting, can feel daunting. Some may not know where to begin, some may feel inadequate, and others may be taking the beginning steps of faith right now.
I want to share with you the four lessons I have learned since taking that first step of faith.
1.You don’t have to know how to do it all.
I have been in awe since the day God placed The She Laughs Project on my heart by His provision. Whether that provision is through encouragement, ideas, or people, God provided. Watching God build the team of girls who are walking with me on this journey has been the greatest gift as well, because I know that I cannot do it all. I certainly do not have the gifts, talents and strengths that the girls on my team have. That’s the best part. God doesn’t expect us to be superwomen. He has placed unique gifts in each of us so that when we come together we create something that glorifies His name. I get a front-row seat to just that when I look at the girls God has placed beside me. He has brought the right girls at the right time. Meet The She Laughs Team.
1 Corinthians 12:4-7 says, “Now there are [distinctive] varieties of spiritual gifts [special abilities given by the grace and extraordinary power of the Holy Spirit operating in believers], but it is the same Spirit [who grants them and empowers believers]. And there are [distinctive] varieties of ministries and service, but it is the same Lord [who is served]. And there are [distinctive] ways of working [to accomplish things], but it is the same God who produces all things in all believers [inspiring, energizing, and empowering them]. But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit [the spiritual illumination and the enabling of the Holy Spirit] for the common good.
2.God doesn’t care about the numbers.
Boy, did I get close to messing this up! The pull from Social Media to look like a big deal, to be legit, or to be “instafamous” is so strong. It’s easy for anyone to fall into. When we first launched, my heart was genuine in the desire for growth in numbers. I thought numbers meant influence and influence is what we wanted. As the numbers grew, so did the excitement and desire for more and before I knew it I found myself consumed by the numbers and had lost sight of the “why.” The She Laughs Project is to empower women to seek the Lord, to trust Him and to laugh at the days to come and we are not using it to have a big Instagram account. As I started to pursue resources about healthy leadership I was quickly convicted by the direction of my heart. Jesus so gently reminded me that He cares for the individual and sadly, as much as I may have thought He cared about my big instagram account, He did not (womp, womp). When I was reminded of His heart and aware of what was in my heart, I surrendered the need for numbers. Human nature has a tendency to judge by the outside or by numerical success to count something as “legit.” Thankfully, God doesn’t view us that way. And now, I am on the journey of renewing my way of thinking and how I perceive what God is doing.
Simply said, the depth, fruit, and calling on what you are doing is not solely based on the number of supporters.
Luke 15: 3-7 says, “So He told them this parable: “What man among you, if he has a hundred sheep and loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the one which is lost, [searching] until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he gets home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, because I have found my lost sheep!’ I tell you, in the same way there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous people who have no need of repentance.
3.Not everyone is going to cheer you on.
This was one of the most shocking yet strengthening lessons. Sadly, the reality is not everyone is going to see and understand the God things that are within you. And that is okay. We have to be women who are secure and confident in our relationship with the Lord to know that our calling is approved by God, not people. Our hope is that everyone would cheer us on but sometimes people misunderstand, question and judge. I had to learn to find my confidence in the Lord as I stepped into She Laughs. His approval has had to be enough.
And I feel as though I should warn you, my commitment to stay planted in His approval and not people has definitely been tested… a lot. But the upside is that the root of His approval in my soul has been deepened each time.
Galatians 1:10 says “Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.”
4.You are a human “being” not human “doer.”
One of the greatest lessons I learned as a woman and leader this year is that everything must flow from my “being” and not my “doing.” For years I was trying to “be” through my “doing” instead of “doing” through my “being”. Sounds exhausting, right? I strived and lived from a works-based system for so long that I eventually had a breakdown. God showed me in this last year that He isn’t a task master, instead He is an instiller of peace, a peace and strength that He invites us into every day. I had to learn to be. I had to learn to rest. I had to learn to abide. Now I am seeing great strength, creativity, and love flow out of me, not because I have achieved it but because I have positioned myself to be in loving union with my creator.
In John 15:5, Jesus said, “I am the Vine; you are the branches. The one who remains in Me and I in Him bears much fruit, for [otherwise] apart from Me [that is, cut off from vital union with Me] you can do nothing.”
I pray that a few of my life lessons over this last year encourage you in your individual season. I always say that we are on this journey together. I have not arrived, the team and I are walking with each of you as we commit to seeking the Lord in everything, trusting Him and laughing at the days to come.
We cannot thank each of you enough for laughing with us over the last year, for allowing our words take a space in your life and for the constant encouragement and support!
Happy One Year To Us!
Love, Yasmina xxx
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