I ran out of protein powder last week.  I hate when that happens.  I had forgotten about it until the last round of my 25-to-5 workout that I did after my our Saturday morning bootcamp.  But it was quiet around the house and I I had a little time, so I took a quick trip to to the store to pick up some.

That’s not really important.  I’m just giving you some background.

I’ve been at this health and fitness thing for a long, long time.  So, when I walk into the store, I typically know exactly what I want.  I’ll ask questions, of course, to learn more about new products or companies.  But usually, I’m fairly targeted in my search.

I forget sometimes that not everyone shares that same history of knowledge and experience.

Case in point: there were two young kids- both entering their Freshman year in high school- looking at protein powders, as well.  When I walked in, the store attendant was helping them and answering questions.  She’s been there for a while, so I know her; she’s very knowledgeable.  But, as I approach the shelf, look at a couple options on which I’m internally debating, the two young men are still there.  I can kinda hear them whispering about me. I had just finished my workout, so my appearance surely led them to believe I might be able to help.  But neither was confident enough to ask.  And I was in one of those moods where I just kinda wanted to mind my own business.  If I’m being truthful, I wasn’t feeling like an expert at all.  On top of that, my insecurities- yes, I have them too- crept in, preventing me from doing the obvious.

But then it dawned on me.  It’s been dawning on me more and more lately, than God.  Literally.

My gift is that I’ve successfully navigated a good portion of this health and fitness journey.  Even through many of the same challenges- work, injuries, family obligations, age, laziness, etc.- that others face.  That is a GIFT.  Not to me.  To the world.  It is not mine to hold onto.  But mine to share.  As a friend recently said, I am a ‘steward’ of those gifts.

And I was going to let fear, insecurity, grumpiness, laziness, conceit-whatever you call it- get in the way.

Luckily, I overcame those internal voices, and helped the two young men.  I asked them what they were seeking to accomplish, what their goals were, and what kind of exercise and nutrition strategy they were currently employing.  I then recommend what I would take if I were in their shoes.  And they were overwhelmingly thankful.

What the heck does that have to do with you?

What gifts do you have?  You certainly have talents and abilities that make you unique.  We all do.  You certainly have an internal drive and passion for something that YOU KNOW can make a difference.  And you certainly let things hold you back.  Like many of us do.

One of those hurdles is likely fitness.  Your body image in particular.  And because you don’t love the way you look and feel and probably beat yourself up for allowing “this” to happen, you are unable to fully bring those gifts to the world.  The first thing you see in the morning, after all, is YOU.  And if you don’t like what you see, it’s hard to go out into the world and be the best mom or dad, employee or student, or even friend.  Your love and help tank is emptied almost immediately when you don’t love YOU.

So, I ask you.  What’s stopping you from sharing your gift?  If it is your health and fitness, if it’s your body image, take steps today to change that.  You can do it.  I know you can.  I hope you will.  Because I’m a part of this beautiful world.  And we all need you, and only you, to share your gift.