I had the amazing opportunity to spend some time with a few graduating senior girls recently. They have had a less than stellar ending to their senior year. And I have to say I more than admire their resilience.

As we discussed their dreams and goals and they shared their future college plans I quickly recognized that none of their aspirations have been dampened by the recent pandemic. If anything they were more determined than ever to seize the day and take hold of this new season with a tenacity they may never have felt before.

I was privileged to watch how one young woman grew her dream over the past several weeks from from being the first in her family to graduate High School,

~ to going to college (on scholarship by the way)

~and now planning to pursuing her Masters Degree.

Once she was signed on to play for a college (despite her sports season being cut by short) she knew that her goals would only be limited by her reach.


Another young woman never stopped during the whole stay at home mandate. She was an essential worker because of her job at a local supermarket. She was never discouraged, rather even more motivated to fulfill her calling.

With all of the things that should have marked the end of their high school days and graduation celebrations being either canceled or postponed, they chose to pick themselves up from the rubble and still make the most of the time given them. These young women are such an example for all of us as we pursue our dreams and goals and find ourselves bombarded with obstacles and hardships along the way.

You’ve heard the saying that life is what you make of it, so we must strategically choose to control our response.

No one chooses a pandemic and the closing of almost everything around the world.

We don’t choose where we are born or the color of our skin.

There are seemingly so many things that are out of our control.

But we do get to choose how to move forward with the life we have been given and whether or not to work towards our dreams and our goals – like these young women – without giving up even when it gets hard.

I wouldn’t blame any of these girls if they would have been discouraged and given in to the overwhelm.

Instead they were singing and laughing and enjoying every moment of their gift of life. In so many of these moments I was moved to tears to see them run with perseverance the race before them; to run through doors of opportunity that were now open after being shut for so many weeks. I want to run my race like that, don’t you?

It is so true that joy comes in the morning. If your life were a canvas what would you be creating right now?

I was at Creative Leaders retreat where my new friend Kathi  demonstrated a technique that we played with on our own canvases, after first sketching out what we wanted to create.  It was the process of reduction – the taking away to reveal the “light” shining through. What a relevant word for this season! Everywhere we look we are having things and opportunities stripped away. Not to mention the inward struggles. What have you experienced recently that is tugging away at you, perhaps longing to reveal the light hidden beneath?

In a time where loyalties are being questioned, freedom to travel is limited, time is rescheduled – relationships are struggling and we are being forced into virtual life – how are you choosing to respond?

If your life were a canvas what would you be creating right now?

Would it be dark and bleak or would it be bursting with joy and color for the opportunities that are presenting themselves right now?

If life truly is what you make of it

and your life is a canvas

I pray you design a life you are inspired to live!