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(in)courage is a virtual living room where we build community, celebrate diversity, and become women of courage.

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  1. I know I have a calling on my life to speak to women. I have a few girls who come to my house once a week. I’m just not quite sure how to really get it really going. We discuss our lives. We pray for one another and other situations. I pray God gives me guidance on this. Because it is for him.

    • That is a good start. I am sure God will lead you through it. A Bible study is always good, or even discussing this book together will do wonders. He brought you together for a reason, so just stick with it. He is laying a foundation for greater things to come.

    • Most Christian speakers start out exactly the same way 🙂 Leading Bible studies, teaching Sunday School, sharing at their home churches, and then getting invitations to share with other groups or churches. Doing a workshop or breakout at a retreat. It grows and you grow! There are also a number of national Christian conferences that teach the basics of personal and professional development for those who feel called to a speaking ministry. Praying for you today!

  2. I completely relate when you said, “I’m a Thinker — a noticer, a daydreamer, a question-asker. A contemplative. I love books and ideas, learning and problem-solving…I’m tempted to keep my inner world — where I really live — all to myself.” Many times those around me seem intent on knowing what I’m thinking! I’m quiet, but the activity in my head is really loud!!

    I have not felt true happiness in a really long time. Life right now, unemployed for a few years and now underemployed, struggling in every sense with others depending on me financially, just isn’t very fun or happy. I’m content, I’m learning to trust God more. But happiness?…not really.

    • To be happy right where you are is hard to do. God usually doesn’t promote me unless I am happy with what I have. You are not your circumstances. This is only a test, and God wants you to pass this test. He does want us to trust Him more. Actually, He wants us to trust Him completely. That means letting go of our plans, and going along with His, whatever they may be.

    • Thank you for sharing your heart — your thoughts! — Lou. I, too, have walked through seasons of suffering where I felt content, in the sense that I trusted God and had faith in His goodness. I believed He had a plan and a purpose in all of it. But happiness didn’t come easily. I’ve been learning to do what Jennifer says in her book — both to redefine it (happiness — what it means to me) and to actively pursue it, snatching moments here and there. Quoting Flannery O’Conner: “Picture me with my ground teeth stalking joy — fully armed, too, as it’s a highly dangerous quest.” (pg 16) Praying strength for the journey and a successful hunt, friend

  3. Being real and vulnerable is a hard thing to do, especially as an abuse survivor. But once you trust in Him and take that step, it gets easier. When I tell my story, I am amazed how many people actually message me and tell me their story of abuse. Thanks for this!

  4. Thank you so much, Christin, for this post and for wording it the way you did! I think I’m split 50-50 thinker/relater but so much of what you wrote resonated. “I’m tempted to keep my inner world — where I really live — all to myself.” The temptation is real for me too. Thankfully, I’m also finding what you shared to be true: that being vulnerable reaps vulnerability. The Happiness Dare is high on my “to read” list!

  5. I really needed to read this. I, too, am a thinker and after I took the test months ago I felt a little let down that my happiness style just seemed a little “less than.” It felt very quiet and insignificant. The second style – the doer in me wanted to grab hold of the thinker and try to spice me up somehow.

    Funnily enough, just a few months before Jennifer’s launch, I started focusing on rest. Learning more about Sabbath and letting go of the things I felt had to be done 24/7 and leaned into learning about the areas that made me happy in rest. My husband’s a relator (and doer), as well, so his idea is to grab a couple of our kids and head out to run errands and connect with people. Mine is to spend a few hours in the kitchen (doing) while listening to sermons or reading up on all the reasons why I need kale as part of my dinner.

    By the time he would return home, both our happiness buckets were full and we would be rested and ready to conquer life together as the thinker/relator/doers that we are. (And he gets to tell me all about the people he ran into while I get to tell him all about what I learned in the kitchen.)

    It’s amazing to me how God orchestrated all of this. And now my “less than” truly is a “more than enough…”

  6. Christin,

    I am a giver. Love helping or giving to others. My greatest joy comes in making others happy and seeing them laugh or content that they have what they need. This sentence is so me: “I don’t have any idea what I want or how I feel.” It describes who I am and how I feel most of the time. I don’t make decisions quickly-usually asking the other ones to decide what to do or where we eat.

    I also love being “real and vulnerable” with close friends. If I have problems or situations I love being able to go to them and ask for prayer. Talking about the situation also helps me to vent and release any angst. Like you said it also gives them a chance to be real and vulnerable with me. I want close friends to feel they can come tome with anything and I will pray about it.

    Blessings 🙂

    • Thanks for sharing this, Beth! I love how even in our different happiness styles, we can relate and connect — find points of commonality. We are not alone on this journey! What a difference it makes to know that…