Blog Post

Out of the Shadows and into the Light

I used to live in the shadows.

I wanted so desperately to please God and everyone around me that I eventually disappeared.

Where did this desire to please everyone come from? I often asked myself. Why do I care so much about what everyone thinks of me? Why am I afraid to be me? Why don’t I have a voice?

Because of fear, I forfeited my strength, my life, my voice, my power, and my beauty. I lost a sense of my true self, and with that loss so much of what God wanted for me was yet unrealized.

Courage awakens

In the midst of my fear, God continued to speak to me, encourage me, pick me up, and tell me, “It will be okay. Trust Me.”  And with every opportunity He provided, I felt Him saying “It’s time you knew who you are. It’s time you stirred, provoked, incited, and awakened yourself.”

He put a love for Africa in my heart and with it, a desire to be courageous. Then, He began to open doors and build my bravery—and He took me to Africa so I could see the epitome of courage, the lion.

I traveled to South Africa to serve an organization called Acres of Love. It’s their mission to rescue abandoned HIV/AIDS babies in and around Johannesburg. The courage of the men and women I met there inspired my own.

Daughters of the King

There is no question who the king and queen of the jungle are. The lions live unopposed and unafraid of any other predator.

We—you and I—are daughters of the Lion of Judah, daughters of the King of the Most High. We can sleep unafraid and in the light. And when we rise up to do the will of God, we let the darkness know we are unopposed!

My journey out of the shadows isn’t over, but I no longer hide in the dark. I love the feel of sunshine on my face. God has given me the gift of courage and I am thankful.

Because of this gift, I want to be a woman of purpose, to live a life of purpose—to live generously and give of myself generously, something I couldn’t do before.

If God did work like this in me, He will do it for you too!

Come out from the shadows—and live.

Sandy Olsson

About Author

Sandy Olsson

Sandy and her husband Norm live in Anaheim Hills, California. They have three grown children and Georgia the Yellow Lab. She is Nana to the eight loves of her life. Because of her passion for women and seeing lives changed, Sandy started teaching classes on strategic life training and leadership, called The Master’s Program for Women in 2000. Although her primary focus is teaching, Sandy is also involved in helping to provide homes in South Africa for abandoned HIV/Aids infants and children with Acres of Love and the Safari Sisters. Sandy has a Bachelors Degree in Political Science and Law and has worked on two Presidential campaigns. She serves on the leadership board of Marketplace Women of OC serving Christian women in business – Personal, Professional, Spiritual. Sandy is a Certified Teacher, Trainer, Coach and Speaker with the John Maxwell Team, and is a member of Toastmaster’s International.

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