There are so many people out there that inspire me that it is not possible to choose only one.
I am inspired by Steves Jobs’ creativity and insightfulness. He understood what the consumer needed before they did and he made it simple to use and beautiful to look at.
I am in awe of Elizabeth Gilbert and Anne Lamott’s writing. When I read their work, it feels as though I am listening to an old friend share pearls of wisdom. I had a similar sense when I read Michelle Obama’s Becoming.
What I love about Oprah is all that she has brought into our homes, our lives and our consciousness through her talk shows. Whether you perceive her topics to be good or bad, that most probably changed the way you viewed the world in some way. That’s powerful. I was listening to a talk the other day that spoke of taking action and having impact. Oprah’s actions have a huge impact the world over.
Tyler Perry. I am fascinated by Tyler the person even though I don’t know him and all he has achieved. To me he is an example of what can be accomplished if you allow God to work through you. (In fact, everyone I mentioned above is if you think about it.)
I have never heard Tyler Perry take credit for any of his achievements and he has many. All credit is given to God. Not only does he not take credit but whenever he speaks he uses the opportunity to share a lesson, or drop a pearl of wisdom for you to walk away with. One of my favourite speeches of his is his BET acceptance speech. There are 3 key messages in this speech that inspire me every time I listen to it:
- Help somebody cross
Tyler shares a few examples of how he has been able to ‘help somebody cross’. He has used laughter, physically helped a man cross outside his school and being given the opportunity to provide employment for people. There are so many ways that we can help people get to the other side of a bad experience, fufill a need or move forward in their life. All we need to do is listen and take action in the moment.
- Create your own table
As a woman and a person of mixed race living in South Africa, I have often felt the need to work extra hard to earn a seat at the table of the white man or the Indian man and more recently, the black man. The reality is that I am unique and so are my talents and if I focus on using those talents in a productive manner and for the good of society, I will be building my own table. God willing, it will be a round table that many others can sit at as well. The reality is that we do not need to compete with each other. We live in an abundant universe and there is enough for all.
- There are people who’s live are tied to my dream
“Every dreamer in this room: there are people whose lives are tied into your dream. Own your stuff, own your business, own your way.” This is the most powerful message in the speech. We are all interlinked. This is also linked to creating your own table to that you can make space for them.
I hope that these wonderful human beings who, I believe, have learnt the art of stepping out the own way in order to let God’s light shine through, will inspire you in some small way too.
“Let your Light shine before men, that they may see your Good Works and Glorify your Father in heaven”Matthew 5:16