Greetings readers, today I want to share a short but meaningful article written by Emily Esfahani Smith.
Being happy is the goal in life, isn’t it? Isn’t that what we all aim for? For most people it looks something like this: good grades, popularity at school, good education, great job, ideal life partner, beautiful home, money for great vacations.
Yet, many people have achieved exactly this and still feel empty and unfulfilled.
Is there something wrong with expecting happiness to result from success in life? Clearly it’s not working.
The suicide rate is rising around the world, and even though life is getting objectively better by nearly every conceivable standard, more people feel hopeless, depressed and alone.
Is there more to life than trying to be happy?
Writer Emily Esfahani Smith thinks so.
In her search she found out that it’s not a lack of happiness that leads to despair. It’s a lack of having meaning in life.
What is the difference between being happy and having meaning in life?
“Many psychologists define happiness as a state of comfort and ease, feeling good in the moment. Meaning, though, is deeper. The renowned psychologist Martin Seligman says meaning comes from belonging to and serving something beyond yourself and from developing the best within you,” says smith.
“Our culture is obsessed with happiness, but I came to see that seeking meaning is the more fulfilling path. And the studies show that people who have meaning in life, they’re more resilient, they do better in school and at work, and they even live longer,” she adds.
Her five-year study led her to the discovery of four pillars than underpin a meaningful life. The first three I might have guessed, but the last one caught me off guard. And it’s really a crucial aspect of the meaning we give to our lives.
“The first pillar is belonging. Belonging comes from being in relationships where you’re valued for who you are intrinsically and where you value others as well,” says Smith.
But she warns that not all belonging is desired belonging. “Some groups and relationships deliver a cheap form of belonging; you’re valued for what you believe, for who you hate, not for who you are.” This is not true belonging.
For many people, belonging is the most essential source of meaning. Their bonds with family and friends gives real meaning to their lives.
The second pillar or key to meaning is purpose, says Smith, and it’s not the same thing as finding that job that makes you happy.
The key to purpose says Smith is using your strengths to serve others. For many people that happens through work and when they find themselves unemployed, they flounder.
The third pillar of meaning is transcendence. Transcendent states are those rare moments when you lose all sense of time and place and you feel connected to a higher reality.
“For one person I talked to, transcendence came from seeing art. For another person, it was at church. For me, I’m a writer, and it happens through writing. Sometimes I get so in the zone that I lose all sense of time and place. These transcendent experiences can change you.”
So we have belonging, purpose and transcendence.
Now, the fourth pillar of meaning is a surprising one.
The fourth pillar is storytelling, the story you tell yourself about yourself.
“Creating a narrative from the events of your life brings clarity. It helps you understand how you became you.
“But we don’t always realize that we’re the authors of our stories and can change the way we’re telling them. Your life isn’t just a list of events. You can edit, interpret and retell your story, even as you’re constrained by the facts.”
This is so true. It boils down to perspective and that can make all the difference: the difference between a miserable life plagued with misfortune or an inspirational life filled with gratitude and insight.
No matter what has happened in your life to break you, you can heal again and find new purpose in life like so many people who have allowed the bad in their lives to be redeemed by the good.
So often life can get too busy and you have lots of things on your mind.
Try to make a new routine and start your morning half an hour earlier by taking a walk, reading a book, say your morning prayer, meditate or write a story. It’s so good for your mental health.
It’s essential to get a good nights rest if you want to wake up earlier. Just try it for yourself, it’s an uplifting experience that might stick for the rest of your life.
Life is precious, we saw it during these past 8 months with COVID-19. Live your life one second at a time, make the best of your day by blessing someone today even if it’s just with a smile on your morning walk, or giving a homeless a bag of groceries.
Anything good is better than Nothing.
I took a morning walk today with my family before school and work, we all felt refreshed and ready for our new day.
Stay safe and enjoy your life.
Founder of the Ladies Enrichment Club Worldwide
PS. Tracy Kennedy shared and interesting article on her website
As some of you might know by now, I am the founder of the Ladies Enrichment Club Worldwide and would like to invite women to advertise their businesses, products or services for free on the LEC social media platforms.
Our social media platforms caters Worldwide for anyone that doesn’t have the budget to pay for online advertisement or just need an extra space to advertise. We started Very recently with a Youtube channel and have received many requests to advertise, we are working on publishing videos every week, but we still need more.
I encourage you to become part of this type of advertisement and spread the word to grow this medium. Why should we pay if we can use mediums like this one to advertise. Ask me how.
Why free? Well, I feel the need to support women in business and to help others so we all can grow stronger together. Online advertisements costs a lot and not many of us have the budget to spend during these times. As a photographer and social media influencer I create a space for those that needs to advertise at no cost.
To get more information on free advertisements, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In support to Lady Authors out there, I did some research and came across female Christian authors By fanawards.com
I encourage you to read books written by these lady authors and if you are a writer and would like to be featured on my social media platforms, please contact me on email@example.com
Here are some female Christian authors in fiction…
If we were to name a queen in the court of Christian fiction, there’s no doubt that Karen Kingsbury would be a contender. When she was just starting out in her 20’s, the author specialized in crime novels full of grit and mystery. By the late 90’s Kingsbury had changed course by becoming a romantic fiction author. Since making that decision, she has written dozens of novels over roughly two decades. Among her most popular books are the Baxter Family collection (featuring “Love Story” and “To the Moon and Back”) and the “Angels Walking” series.
Author Jan Karon has lived a long and complicated life. From family drama to a long line of different occupations, her journey to becoming a writer hit more than a few bumps. Her first major work, “At Home in Mitford,” was published when Karon was in her late 50’s. The novel turned into a long-running series about an Episcopal priest in a small town. There are now over a dozen books in the Mitford Years series and the author has released several related works as well.
With many female Christian authors in fiction, one setting or group of people may come to dominate their work. For Beverly Lewis this area of focus is the Amish community and similar folks. The author has been transporting readers to this simpler setting for more than two decades. Mystery, romance, and coming of age tales are all part of the stories that Lewis has written in series like the Rose trilogy.
Our next author is known more for her non-fiction than her literary works, but Priscilla Shirer recently joined the ranks of the other female Christian authors in fiction on our list. Her epic series “The Prince Warriors” has already released a number of installments with more on the way. The books follow a group of young people who are transported to an enchanted world where they must fight evil. Of course if you want some good non-fiction content, you can also check out books of Shirer’s like “Fervent” and “God is Able.”
If you were to poll readers on the ten most popular works in Christian fiction, Francine Rivers’ “Redeeming Love” would be on the list. The author has always specialized in romantic historical fiction, be it in the early days of America or all the way back to Biblical times. Her most recent book, “The Masterpiece,” was a bestseller that received rave reviews from fans. The book’s story is closer to a present day setting but still has the themes of redemption and romance that readers have enjoyed for years.
Like many female Christian authors in fiction, Lynn Austin started her writing career while she was raising her kids. The long years of work paid off with the publication of Austin’s first book series in the mid-to-late 90’s. The Refiner’s Fire series which won multiple Christy Awards for its effort is among her most famous work. The collection of books follow a variety of women as they navigate the Civil War.
RACHEL HAUCK – FEMALE CHRISTIAN AUTHORS IN FICTION
For fans of contemporary Christian romance and Hallmark films, author Rachel Hauck is one you’ll want to look for as soon as possible. The recent wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex (Harry and Meghan for those of the lay person.) may inspire you to pick up the author’s Royal Wedding series that features a trio of love stories fit for a princess. If you’re not into the royalty thing you can also check out “The Writing Desk” and “The Wedding Dress” for stories that span decades and speak to the heart.
Untangle a mystery with author Kristen Heitzmann when you take on the Michelli Family trilogy. These stories, much like the writer’s other work, are all about understanding the past in order to make sense of the present. Readers can also bond with Morgan Spencer in the Rush of WIngs series, as the character deals with tragedy, romance, and finding himself. If you don’t want to commit to a whole series, “Freefall” gives you a self-contained story about a young woman who can’t remember who she is and the man investigating her past.
Colleen Coble is another one of these prolific female Christian authors who began her writing journey well into her adult life. Having married and raised kids at a young age, Coble decided to fulfill her dream of writing a book. More than two dozen titles later, Coble is a respected author who has served as the CEO of American Christian Fiction Writers. Among her bestselling works are installments from the Rock Harbor mystery series and “Tidewater Inn.”
Author Terri Blackstock has been writing romance and mystery novels for decades. Her most recent series kicked off in 2016 with the publication of “If I Run.” The books follow a woman wrongly accused of murder as she attempts to find the real culprits. Blackstock’s main focus is on suspense novels, but if you’re looking for something less squeamish, check out “Covenant Child” or the romance anthology “Chance of Loving You” which she co-wrote with Susan May Warren and Candace Calvert.
Another great writer of suspense is Lynette Eason. Her work often revolves around law enforcement and other groups designed to protect. One of her most popular book series is the “Elite Guardians.” The books are about a bodyguard agency fully staffed by women. Readers can also look for the “Women of Justice” series that follows (as you can imagine) different women in law enforcement and related fields. Eason’s work is great for fans of female characters and mystery/suspense.
The last entry on our list of female Christian authors in fiction is Patricia Bradley. The writer keeps up our list’s current trend of suspenseful authors. Bradley is behind the successful Logan Point series. It tells a variety of tales involving the events of a small Mississippi town. Criminal profilers, women on the run, and private detectives tracking missing persons are just some of what the series has to offer readers. Staying in the South, the author’s current series follows the cold case files of the Memphis police. It all begins with “Justice Delayed,” a story about finding a killer before the wrong man is given the penalty of death.
We know there isn’t any shortage of great female Christian authors in fiction as there are many other storytellers would could go on about, but these 12 writers are a strong representation of the talented individuals who are creating fun and captivating reading material for faith-based audiences. The K-LOVE Fan Awards is all about celebrating entertaining music, films, and books that are making an impact on Christian communities. Find out how you can be a part of the ultimate fan experience by clicking on the link below.
Thank you to fan awards for doing research and giving us the information to share.
(Above Product Image taken from the Ladies Enrichment Club Shop on Redbubble).
I was busy working on my Ladies Enrichment Club Online Shop on Society6 and realized that there are many people out there that cannot afford to buy masks. During this time we all need to stay safe and healthy and need to use the resources we have and can afford.
Many people are walking around without masks (probably they have a health issue and not wearing a mask), but we all need to respect each other’s health and wellbeing and take care of one another. Kids are going back to school, or attending school and need to be protected always.
Here’s a few links you can checkout to create your own mask, also make sure you use the materials that is safe and effective. I randomly picked a few sites to get mask patterns but if you want to share your pattern with me, please do so and I will post it.