There was a land that had never been explored before. There were seemingly great opportunities there, but no one knew for sure. So 12 women, aged 45 to 70, from 12 cities of various sizes, were tasked by Fearless Leader to go into this land and find out what was there and report back with what they found.
They were told to drive their own cars up through the desert into the hill country to enter the land unseen. “See what the land is like” the Fearless Leader of this expedition said. ‘Find out whether the people living there are strong or weak, few or many. See what kind of land they live in. How is the soil? Is it fertile or poor? Are there many trees? Do your best to bring back samples of the crops you see. Do their towns have big businesses or small? Is there room for growing businesses? How are their websites? What does their social media look like? What types of buyers do you find?
Going north, they passed through the Negev and arrived at Sheshai, the capital of the land. What they could see far and wide, were houses, lawns, driveways with two and three cars, white picket fences and what looked to be very successful people and businesses. They saw highrises, women and men with briefcases crisply walking along streets. In the distance they could see green croplands, obviously fertile land. They saw pastures full of goats, sheep, cattle, horses. They saw huge swaths of land being watered with the latest sprinklers and equipment.
They broke up into groups of three and went about surveying the lay of the land. Seeing what was what. They stopped in cafes to look online at social media, opened up new accounts at Pinterest, Snapchat, Twitter, Facebook, Kik; listened to people talking about their businesses, attended Chamber of Commerce meetings, trade shows, went to conventions, watched webinars, listened to podcasts. [they had unlimited bank accounts 😉 ] They went to Agricultural centers, farming communities, towns with only one stoplight and cities with 5 million people. They went everywhere and talked to hundreds of people.
The 12 women were there for 6 weeks, gathering information and getting samples of the abundant fruit and vegetables growing in the fertile soil. After exploring for 40 days, the women returned. Fearless Leader gave an announcement on T.V. there would be live reports from the women the next morning that would be on t.v., radio and the web, as well as recorded for those that couldn’t watch live.
The next morning, the 12 women sat outside, under the blue and white striped awning covering the podium, ready to give their reports. Several women stood and gave this report: “We entered the land you sent us to explore and it is indeed a bountiful country – a land flowing with milk and honey. Here are some of the kinds of crops it produces” and they showed everyone the peaches, cherries, pears and apples they had gathered.
“But the people living there are all young and their businesses are always changing with the times. Everyone there knows how to use ALL the social media and website platforms. They don’t miss a beat when something new crops up.
The land itself was green and fertile, with many diverse crops and systems we have never seen watering the land. We don’t stand a chance”.
However two women, Carol age 50 and Janine, age 62 moved to the front and began speaking. They told the people gathered, “we can DO this! Let’s go at once to restart our businesses” they said. “We can certainly do this! There is room for more! Each person brings their own uniqueness to their own business, it doesn’t matter what your age is, it’s how you can help others, it’s the intent of your heart. There are plenty of people there to buy everyone’s products! There are all sorts of social media platforms to thrive on! You don’t have to know everything, there are people and places to help.
Yes, there are new ways of doing things many of us don’t know how to do and yes, some of us will feel overwhelmed at times, but we can DO this! we can start groups and help each other out, support each other. We can get help from other people and businesses that want to help us succeed. There are many! Like Dave Shrein, Shawn Quintero, Kim Garst as well as others”!
But the other women disagreed. Shouting so loudly every microphone picked it up, they said, “We can’t start our businesses over again! We haven’t kept up with the latest social media fads, we don’t know how to do WordPress! We will fail! They are younger and smarter than we are. We don’t stand a chance! We can’t come up with new ideas or doing anything differently. There’s no more opportunities available”!
So the question remains for you, the person who is not confident in their social media and/or website prowess, who is feeling older due to all the new platforms required now for having a business. Who may have started out online 20 years ago making good money, but is now in a slump, overwhelmed and realizing you can’t use the skills you used for years, that worked for getting sales. You, the person that sees so many other businesses that are in the same genre as yours, skillfully navigating the online waters, while you are falling behind because you don’t know how to xyz.
The question remains to you, are you going to listen to the LOUD fear inside your head, or are you going to listen to the small, quiet voice of encouragement you can sometimes barely hear? Are you going to declare you don’t know enough, can’t learn enough? Or are you going to declare you have the intelligence, patience and panache to learn what you need to, in order to earn a living?
Will you give up and listen to the tiredness and fear, or will you press on and put to good use the business acumen you have gained and expand your brain cells by learning new things? It all depends on which voice you decide to listen too.
Because, as we know, life is ALL about….choices.
Story modified from Numbers 13. It was my reading for this morning. 8-4-16