Morning devotionals are powerful, and focusing. After a nice morning jog, they set the pace for the rest of the day. Today was special as I experienced a sort of calming peace in the jog and the devotional.
As I'm running through a nearby neighborhood around 6:45, I spot a deer grazing within inches of the road, innocently standing in someone's front yard. I momentarily considered altering my path to not startle her (no antlers), but as she looked up at me, I felt like I was being examined. After she determined I was of no threat, she continued grazing and I ran past less than ten feet away. This may be normal in the north where deer are not normally threatened by their human neighbors, but where I live, deer associate humans with guns and run for safety at the sight of one. When I turned back around, I again passed the deer and felt the harmony between myself and nature.
Morning devotional included reflection on the hymn "The Summons", which sparked an idea for my calling story (which is in the works and will hopefully materialize tomorrow). We moved on to examine our strengths and conflict management styles that will be important for us to recognize as we try to work with and get along with people in another culture, setting, and situation. For those who know me closely, I thought you may find this amusing.
Strengths Finder 2.0 (My Top 5)
You are a conductor. When faced with a complex situation involving many factors, you enjoy managing all the variables, aligning, and realigning them until you are sure you have arranged them in the most productive configuration possible.
Your Responsibility theme forces you to take psychological ownership for anything you commit to, and whether large or small, you feel emotionally bound to follow it through to completion.
Woo stands for winning others over. You enjoy the challenge of meeting new people and getting them to like you. Strangers are rarely intimidating to you. Instead, you are drawn to them.
You are intrigued by the unique qualities of each person. You are impatient with generalizations or "types" because you don't want to obscure what is special and distinct about each person.
You have certain core values that are enduring and cause you to be family-oriented, altruistic, even spiritual, and to value responsibility and high ethics - both in yourself and others.
I am a persuader, which you probably already knew. When conflict arises, I rarely try to negotiate or collaborate, which could be more productive at times. Instead, I expend energy trying to persuade and get the other person to see my point of view. I think that goes along with the "Belief" and core values, as well as my Type A personality.
My current struggle is to allow others to speak and stand in the spotlight instead of being an attention grabber. It's interesting to me how even when I try to step back, others have already established me as that person and happily pass the mic to me when it's time to share. Hopefully, my attempts to persuade them to take a step forward will encourage them to share their own unique perspective.
God bless and good night!
p.s. really enjoying my new friend/workout buddy April :)