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Making the Circle Bigger with Brooke Romney

Tue Dec 06 05:00:44 EST 2022
Episode 13

When was the last time you invited someone new to join your book club or dinner group? Or had a deep and meaningful conversation with a sister in your Relief Society? Or went out of your way to sit by someone you didn't know? It’s comfortable to be part of a familiar group! And it’s easy to gravitate to the friends we know and love. But by making our circles bigger we have the power to change the course of a life.

As you get to know people, you can't help but love them.
Brooke Romney

In today's episode, our guest Brooke Romney discusses with Kathryn what it takes to find ways of connecting and making our circles into "horseshoes" in order to strengthen relationships and welcome new friendships. Brooke has been a champion for what it means to be a real friend, and she has written many times over on her blog about how connection is an essential part of our experience in life.

Top takeaways from this episode:

  1. Connection is an essential part of God's plan, and we are there to remind each other of that.
  2. Making our social circles into "horseshoes" helps people feel comfortable to come in and out of our lives when it's right for them.
  3. People are eager to share their stories and showing genuine interest can go a long way in connecting as friends.
  4. Sometimes it's important to tell Heavenly Father that you're okay with being uncomfortable in order to carry out his work.
  5. Heavenly Father is going to accomplish his purposes, but it’s up to us if we want to be a part of it.


Small and simple challenge:

 Get down on your knees and ask God whose life you need to be in today. It might be your mom, your kids, your sister, or your friends, but he will always direct you when you ask. Then get up and act.


Kathryn Davis 00:00

When was the last time you invited someone new to join your book club or dinner group, or had a deep and meaningful conversation with the sister in your Relief Society, or went out of your way to sit by someone you didn't know? Hi, and welcome to magnify an LDS Living podcast where we talk about using our influence as followers of Jesus Christ to make a difference in the world. I'm your host, Kathryn Davis, a mom, a seminary teacher, and a Traeger enthusiast who loves God. It's comfortable to be part of a group. And it's easy to gravitate to the friends we know and love. But by making our circles bigger, we have the power to change the course of a life. It's not always easy or natural to bring others into the group. So how can we find ways of connecting that strengthen relationships and bring us new friendships? We want to answer that question today with our guests Brooke Romney. Work has been a champion for what it means to be a real friend. And she has written many times over on her blog about how connection is an essential part of our experience in life. She works with teens and parents on how to better include others. And we would like to extend the conversation today to all of us women who live faith leading lives. Brooke, I'm like, so excited that you're here with us today. So fun. Me too.

Brooke Romney 01:15

I cannot wait to chat. This is so fun.

Kathryn Davis 01:18

Okay, so before we begin, I have a couple of rapid fire questions that I would love for you to answer so we can get to know you a little bit. Awesome. Okay, this first question might be a little unfair and hard. But I hear and I know that you are an avid reader. Yes. And so if you had to choose one book to read together as a family, what would that book be?

Brooke Romney 01:41

Okay, so I did read this book together with my kids. And we we read Wonder when it came out. And I just don't know that there is a better book for learning empathy and understanding differences and celebrating differences. But also like understanding that everyone has their own struggles and their own perspective. So I loved when that book came out. I read it with my little boys. And so I have a five year gap. So I have three kids, and then a five year gap, but my youngest read on his own and it's one of his favorites, too. So probably Wonder.

Kathryn Davis 02:15

I love that book. Okay, so you have four boys. And when they have a free day to spend with you, what is the perfect day with your four boys?

Brooke Romney 02:26

Like one on one or all four together all four together? Okay, so all four together, I would say the perfect day is we love to be outside. So if we could plan a day, we would do something adventurous. So like hiking, they love to be... they'd begrudgingly hike, but they love being outdoors. So that's a great way for us to be outdoors as a family, but then also something really adventurous. So like rappelling or rock climbing, or I don't know like Alpine slide. They love the Utah Olympic Park, it would always involve food, like good food. My kids are pretty adventurous eaters. So we love to eat together. And then probably like watching a sporting event. So a college sporting event, or that's perfect. I mean, if we got lucky, like a professional sporting event.

Kathryn Davis 03:15

Okay, that sounds like an ideal day in my house, too. Yeah, It's a pretty good day for all of us. Yeah. Hey, so my final question is, you make some pretty awesome gift guides for families, which I've actually been using a lot the last little bit and getting some pretty good ideas for my kids. But if you had your own gift guide to make for you, what is something that you would love to receive?

Brooke Romney 03:40

I'm actually... my husband thinks I'm somebody that's really hard to shop for. Because I don't need a lot of things. I actually am not a big shopper for myself. So I love a good like new sweater. Or I love new shoes. But I'm really picky because my feet hurt because I'm getting older. So they have to be really comfortable like a sweater, shoes, I did tell him I could use... I've been taking my kids backpacks when I travel. Like even when I travel for work. And he's like it might be time to upgrade that. So maybe a new backpack that I can travel with it doesn't have a soccer logo on it.

Kathryn Davis 04:19

I'm actually so excited that you're here today. And to talk about kind of connection, we could all be a little bit more inclusive. But it can be hard to know where to begin to make it feel natural. You have built a platform that is all about how we need each other. And that connection is an essential part of womanhood. And I think that's really at the heart of being a disciple of Jesus Christ is this connection. So why are you so passionate about the topic of connection?

Brooke Romney 04:48

Well, I just... I think connection changes everything. I think when we feel alone... I was at a steak meeting and we we had a visiting authority speaking to us via satellite and he was talking about how when the animals in the wild get isolated, then they can be preyed upon. He was talking about the youth, but I don't think it stops when you're young. When we get isolated, we often can be preyed upon, we feel a lot weaker when we're alone. And I was thinking about that, and I was thinking about how true that is for teenagers, but also for adults. He was talking about how we make our biggest mistakes when we're all by herself when we have nobody checking in and when we have nobody close by. And I thought how often like, the adversary can slip in when we're alone. And our thoughts become like, well, you know, nobody needs me. Nobody likes me, I'm not important. You get somebody next to you that reminds you that you are needed, you are important, you're essential for not just like Heavenly Father's plan, but just like the daily life plan. And so connection, I think, it changes who we are, it changes how we feel about ourselves, it changes how we feel about others, and it changes the way we feel about God. And I think there's a reason he put us in families in wards, in stakes, the organization of our church is divine, because he knew that we needed each other.

Kathryn Davis 06:13

Isn't that interesting? Like I didn't think about that how the adversary can work when we're alone, even from the very beginning with Adam and Eve. Right, right. It was when they were separated? Yes, I haven't really thought about that. But you're right, we can be more vulnerable when we're separated. So I think it's easier to connect when we are comfortable and with our own friend groups and our own social circles. But you talk a lot about drawing bigger circles and creating horseshoes. What does that look like? What is a horseshoe?

Brooke Romney 06:46

Well, I love the imagery of a horseshoe because it is like a circle where everybody feels enveloped together, right? So you're still together. But there's an opening. And I love the idea of an opening where people can come in. But then people can also go out, and they can still feel like they belong. And it's really important to me, I talk a lot about teenagers, because that's kind of where my focus is a lot. But a lot of times you see teens that they have to, once they're in, you gotta stay in, and if you leave, you can never come back. And I think about that a lot. Yeah, then where you know what we all grow, and we all change. And sometimes we want to be with certain people. And then we want to leave for a little bit, then we want to come back in. And even as we talk about the gospel, or our wards or our classes, sometimes people feel really good inside that horseshoe. And sometimes they need to step away for a little bit. But there's always got to be room for people to come back in. And I just never want people to feel like I've closed it off, whether they want a new friend, right? Whether they're just new to something and they want to try out a new friendship or whether they say, You know what, like, I'm getting older. Now, I can't make it to park day. But boy, I would still love to be included if you guys go to lunch or go on a walk. So there's always room for people to go in and out. That's kind of why I love the idea of a horseshoe.

Kathryn Davis 08:08

I hadn't even thought of that before. Like, I always think I loved the idea of a horseshoe because I think sometimes we close our circle. And we don't leave that open for people to come. But I really love the idea of allowing people to leave when they need to, and come back if they ever want to. Yeah, the door's always open. Yeah. And such an important lesson to teach our kids as well, especially at a time when I think they feel like there's a safety in closed circles. Yes. Right. Like, I think teenagers feel like if it's closed, then it's safe. I think it's so true. And even adults, you know, it's like, oh, I have my friend group. You know, I'm good. I've got something to do this weekend, or I have someone I can call because there is safety in that. And it does feel really good. I've been in both places. And it's really easy to get comfortable when you have that close, tight circle. But there's a lot of things that we're missing out on. And that's something to remember when we don't let people in. It's not just that it feels safe. But safety also often leads to times when you're not growing, you're not expanding. And and that's really important. That's really important for us to feel purposeful and like we're achieving who we need to be Oh I love that. Let's talk a little bit about that for a second. Because I think we just never know who might need us to reach out to them, and really importantly, who we might need in our lives. And so how has your life been made better by reaching out beyond those close circles by creating more of a horseshoe?

Brooke Romney 09:35

Well, I'll go back to when I had young kids, and we had just moved to Arizona from Virginia. So it was a big move. And yeah, I really... I was really lonely. Like I just had one baby. And motherhood felt really like lonely and boring. I needed people in my life. And I wasn't good at just occupying myself at home and neither was my child. So I really needed people in my life. I felt, you know, we moved in, we actually moved into this great big ward that was just huge and needing to split, there were five wards meeting in our building. And it was just this huge growth time in the area that we were in. And so it was kind of hard to find your place. And there had been people there who had been there for a while. And so I just started inviting people. And people often think that I was just like, outgoing from the beginning. But it was really, really hard for me. And so what I did, because I didn't know anybody, well, I just started putting out on the neighborhood, I can't remember, I don't think it was Facebook, maybe it was Facebook, but it was something or maybe like an email. And I would just say, Hey, I'm going to be at the park on Tuesday at 10, if anyone wants to come, or I'm going to be at the pool on Friday at four, if anyone wants to come or I'm starting an exercise group that I'm not qualified to lead, but if anybody wants to come to it, I'll be on the you know, basketball courts at 2, or whatever it was. And what I realized that was so fun about that is when I put that invitation out to everyone, we had all different types of women join us. And I got to know so many different people. And there were people that came that I probably would have never picked out of a group and thought like, I think we would be really good friends. But they ended up being some of my closest, most loyal friends that I had through those six years, they were there for me through good and bad. And I just think sometimes we need to give people the opportunity to come. And we never know what will happen after that.

Kathryn Davis 11:30

Right and how that they can bless your life when you think you're reaching out to help others. But really how it ends up blessing your own life.

Brooke Romney 11:37

In so many incredible ways. I think another thing that I learned that was really... sometimes if it's hard to reach out, I love being able to learn from people. And I have a neighbor here. And she is probably 20 or so years older than I am. And she's great at gardening. And I wanted to learn about it. And I totally could have Googled it like I could have Googled it, I could have gone to a class. But I saw that my neighbor had a talent, and we bonded over flowers and vegetables. And she invited me into her life, because we had something in common and she could teach me. So sometimes if you're not quite sure how to say like, let's be friends, or if somebody's in a different stage of life than you are. I love asking someone to teach you something. It's a great way to get somebody into your life and learn a little bit more about them.

Kathryn Davis 12:27

Oh, that is a great way and a great way to kind of open those doors of communication. And I think you know, this season on the podcast, we've been talking a lot about the call to become like our Savior. And in order to become like him. One of the ways is to love first. And so how has forging these connections with women in your ward or in your neighborhood, how has that helped you draw closer to the Savior?

Brooke Romney 12:52

I think... Because as you get to know people, you get to understand them. And that's what he did. He went out and said, Tell me about you. I want to know why do you do this? What are you struggling with? What are you excited about? And it has been such an incredible gift for me to be able to get to know these women. They've brought so much to my life. And as you get to know people, you can't help but love them. Someone you thought you maybe didn't like as you learn their story. Instead of being like, Oh, I don't know, she's kind of hard to get along with you think, wow, she's incredible. I can't believe what she's gone through. And that she's still standing like, I'm so lucky to be a friend of hers. And being able to get to know so many different people in a deeper way has helped me understand the way the Savior sees all of us. And so I think I've been able to understand the good that he sees in us and then also been able to give grace like he gives grace. Sometimes it's hard to give grace if you don't know somebody's story, but because he knows each of our stories, I think it's a lot easier when we try to do the same thing.

Kathryn Davis 13:59

Yeah. And like you said, I think that's so important that we need to get to know people on a deeper level. And I think sometimes in our busy lives, that's really hard. We can go to, you know, Relief Society or a ward or a social event. And we ask those surface questions. Hey, how are you doing? How's your family? You know, we don't get to know people on a deeper level. So how can we kind of move past those surface questions? Sometimes just being aware of who someone is and what they're going through. I love the idea of follow up questions. I think most people, there's a few people that are really private, and that's something that we have to respect, but I think a lot of times people want to share their stories. They want to share what they're going through. They want someone who can listen. And so if you find out that your neighbor's son just got engaged, instead of just saying like, hey, congratulations. That's so exciting. You can say Hey, congratulations. That's so exciting. How do you feel about it? Like, are you excited? Are you worried? You know, how do you like the person that he's engaged? Yeah. You know, following up instead of just like the surface questions make a big difference. If you hear that someone's dad passed away, instead of, you know, just thinking, Oh, this is kind of an awkward time, I want to avoid them. Ask like, Hey, how are you doing? I'm so sorry about your dad and letting them let you know how they're doing. And you know, it might be a time where they don't want to talk. But it might be. And if you're there, then I think you'll be able to let them open up. I think it's really important that we're also willing to share ourselves. Yeah, it's really hard to share with someone who constantly looks like everything's just fine. And they've never had a struggle, and they never go through anything. But if you're willing to share something like, yeah, you know, this has been a little bit of a hard month for me, you know, my kids are growing up. And this Christmas looks different. That opens up an opportunity for somebody else saying, Oh, yes, like, I've been there. That was, that was a really interesting time. You know, we tried this, we we now go out to dinner instead of do an elf dinner. Like, that was fun. For my older kids. You know, there's, there's things that we can bond over when we're willing to share ourselves too. Right. And maybe somebody doesn't necessarily understand exactly what we're going through, but they probably understand the emotion, right? Or the sense of loss of, you know, I might not understand your hard, but I do know hard, right. And here's how it helped me through my hard. You know, it's actually interesting. Just a couple days ago, in my seminary classes, I challenged the kids to invent and create their perfect communication app. As you know, the world is flooded with these communication apps. I'm like, what would be the perfect ideal communication app for you? And I had an almost every class a group of students who came up with this idea of an app with their friends that would ask a deeper question every day, and that before they could, you know, use their phones for anything, they had to talk about a deeper question. I love that. I know, isn't that such a good idea? Because I think we don't get to those deeper questions that you were just saying we stay on the surface. And I think sometimes fear or anxiety, or we don't want to intrude that they keep us from asking those deeper questions, or not even knowing what to say. Mm hmm. And I know, you know, you mentioned that if somebody's suffering a loss that people really don't know what to say, my my mom just passed away a few weeks ago. And I know there are people who, who don't know how to ask questions about that, or just avoid it, because they don't want to bring up some of the hurt. But really, I think we have to know that it's okay to ask those follow up questions. Right. And that is where we, we get to know people and their stories. I love that. Absolutely. What are some of your favorite follow up questions or your deeper questions that you can ask when maybe you're in a situation where people don't know what to say, I have talked to some friends who feel like somebody will ask, Oh, how's your kids? And they might say, I don't have any kids. And then the conversation stops? Like, nobody knows what to say? Or if they say something that's happened in their life, like, it kind of kills the conversation, how do we not kill that conversation and keep asking questions.

Brooke Romney 18:19

I think people can tell when you actually care. And so you know, if I were to say something like, oh, well, how, how are your kids doing? And someone said, I don't have any kids. I think the right thing would be like, Oh, I'm sorry I asked that. Tell me about yourself, like, what do you love to do? Like, what do you do? You know, letting somebody know, like, there's not qualifications or friendship or like an appropriate conversation. Yeah. But you're really interested in who they are. So if I were to say, how are things going, and you're like, oh, you know what, like, it's been hard. My mom just passed away, you know, then maybe I could say something like, I'm so sorry. Tell me about your favorite memory with your mom, you know, or tell me like, what's something she taught you that you'll never forget? I think a lot of times we think that people don't want to talk about stuff. But our world is pretty isolated right now. And I think people really want to share their stories. And I think they want someone to be there to listen, sometimes people are struggling with their teenager. And if you say like, Hey, you know, how's Jake doing? And somebody says, you know, it hasn't been a great couple months and like, Hey, if you're comfortable, like, I'd love to listen, like what's going on? You know, letting them know that they matter to you. You're not looking for a specific answer. You're not just there for something superficial, like you really care about who they are.

Kathryn Davis 19:42

So have you had experiences with people where you have been willing to go deeper and ask those questions and as you've gotten deeper, have you felt like a stronger connection? Have you had experiences with people like that?

Brooke Romney 19:55

For sure. I was actually just with a friend today who's child came out as non binary. And I just said, How's it going? Like, tell me about it? What like, yeah, how do you how are you navigating the situation? Like, tell me about the pronouns? How is it going with church, I think it's important that she feels like she can talk to someone about it. And you know, we had a great conversation. And I learned a lot. And I was able to share some things with her. I hope that when she walked away from me, she felt like someone was interested in listening to her story. I think, when we go through hard things that can feel really isolating. And because it's a hard thing, and people don't know what to say, no one's willing to talk about it. And you're like, hey, there's something really gigantic that's going on in my life, and no one wants to talk about it. Yeah. And that's, that's a tough, tough place to be, you know, we've had things in our family where I just, I wanted to talk about it, you know, I wanted someone to know that something was hard and that I was struggling. But I also felt like, oh, I don't want to burden someone, I don't want to put this all on them and on their shoulders. So sometimes you just need somebody that's willing to ask and willing to listen. And I also really believe that if somebody doesn't want to talk about it, they'll let you know. So I think sometimes we get so worried. But if I were to ask you about your mom, you could say something like, You know what, it's, it's too fresh, I would love to share that with you at another time. Or when I asked my friend about her child that's non binary, she could have totally said, You know what, it's a lot. We're still processing. I'll let you know when I'm ready to talk about it. And I think, right, I think we can do that, too. If somebody were to ask me about something that was feeling a little bit more personal or private, it's okay for me to say like, I appreciate you caring, I'm not ready to chat about it. But when I am, I will let you know, you know, we just need to be a little bit more open on both sides.

Kathryn Davis 21:50

The idea that we can ask, and we can also say, I'm not ready yet. But the thought that somebody wants to talk about it, even that alone makes us not feel so isolated. Right? Yeah. I talked to a lot of people who are like Katherine, you're super naturally outgoing. And I am I love to talk to everybody. In fact, maybe you're a little bit more like me. And my kids are like, stop talking to every person you see. And we don't have to have a conversation in the grocery store and every aisle and they sometimes, kind of, you know, jazz me a little bit about being so outgoing, but I have a lot of friends and family members who aren't as outgoing. They're a little more introverted. And when we talk about increasing our circle, and getting more friendships, that's a little overwhelming at the thought of how do I do that? If I'm not an extrovert? If I'm more of an introvert, do I really need to increase my circle? I'm kind of okay, where I am. So I love that you asked this question, because for my whole life, I've always wanted more people, right? I've always wanted more people in my circle. Yeah, well, over the last couple years, I am now working pretty full time, I have a son who's married, I've got a grandbaby. I've got four kids, I've got a calling, I now live back by where my family is. And I have that feeling sometimes of I actually don't have more space in my life, and everybody feels like that at different stages of their life. One of the things that I realized is that it's really not up to me to decide that I need to ask Heavenly Father who needs me. And I think he knows us really, really well. And I don't think he's going to ask the person who was an absolute introvert to have a party every Friday night inviting 50 people. But I think he is going to let us know the one person that needs us most. And then we're going to have to get out of our shells or make the time or whatever it is to be the one person for the one person that needs us most. What I love about this idea is that when we're all doing it, everyone's taken care of, we can't expect one person to take care of all the people because they're outgoing. We all have to do our part. So have you experienced that in the last couple of years? As you said, you've gotten busier. And sometimes you might feel like overwhelmed or that your social cup is full. As you've asked Heavenly Father, have you had an experience where Yeah, I need to increase that circle and make that connection.

Brooke Romney 24:24

Yeah, I really... I will tell a very honest story. So couple, I don't know, maybe 18 months ago, I was just full in every way. I had so many things on my plate. And I felt very, very overwhelmed. And I just basically said like, I don't really have time to be a good minister. I just don't I just don't. I kind of get that. and Becky squires said something the other day and she said sometimes we mistake relief for peace when we get an answer. So I was praying and I was like, hey, like, I'm doing a lot of things. And I'm really overwhelmed. And I just don't have time to be good minister. And so I was like, I will drop something off. And like, that's all I can do. And I kind of got this feeling of relief. Yeah, I was telling myself that really, like, it's fine. You're doing a lot of other good things. It's fine. And few months went on. And I decided to actually have a real prayer. I was struggling with quite a few things. And I just was like, what, what lack I yet? basically like, what am I not doing? And I got that feeling like, if you're too busy to minister, you're too busy. And I was like, Oh, well remember, like six months ago, and you said it was okay. And he was like, I didn't say it was okay. Six months ago, you said it was okay, six months ago, like, felt peaceful because you were off the hook, like you let yourself be off the hook. Right. But like, I need you to minister. And so it was inconvenient. And it was hard. But I started ministering. And that's when the peace came. We don't get peace by not having our priorities in line with God's priorities for us. We just don't, we can feel relief when we give ourselves our own answer. That feels nice for a little while. But if we're close to the spirit, there's going to be something that feels off. When I started to minister, and I'm still not like a great minister, but I'm trying I'm doing everything I can to be one that changed for me. I don't know if it changed for the person that I miss her to I don't even know if she cares, right. But the important part of it is that I felt like I was doing God's will. And I think sometimes if we're in that spot of like, Hey, I don't have time, I don't have space, I don't have room. If we ask Heavenly Father and say, All right, who needs me? Who do you need me to be there for? He's not going to give us an answer that we can't manage. It might be hard, it would stretch, it might stretch us. But I think it's something that is ultimately better for us.

Kathryn Davis 27:03

And it reminds me of that, you know, the Lord cares more about our growth and our comfort. And sometimes I wish it were the other way around. That he cared more about my comfort. Yeah, but he doesn't. Right. Right. And and if we truly want to be disciples of Jesus Christ, truly follow Him and be his hands, then we need to be as hands, right? Whether that's comfortable or not.

Brooke Romney 27:31

It's so important for us to be able to say I'm okay to be uncomfortable, you know, that's what growth is about. And I'm okay to stretch a little bit. And then I'm willing to build those blessings when they come.

Kathryn Davis 27:42

And I'm really interested to learn more about what you're going to learn about ministering through this process. Yeah, it's it's real. It'll be really interesting as we continue this, and I think of how many times it was inconvenient for him, and how many times I'm inconvenient for him, you know, and the way that he continues to minister to me or to others, or to people when he was on this earth, that it was not the right time, and he was busy. And there were really important things he was supposed to be doing. But he was willing to stop. And he was willing to say, like, Who's the one person that needs me right now? Do you do that often? Do you pray often about who the Lord needs for you to visit? Is that like a weekly thing? A daily thing? How do you do that?

Brooke Romney 28:29

So I am more of a doer, I would say. And so I just try to follow a prompting, there's times when I pray specifically to say like, who needs me, you know, but most of the time, I just try to live with an open heart and with a little open time in my day, so that when I feel like someone needs dinner, or if I feel like the grocery store clerk needs me to chat. Or if I feel like I need to go on a walk with someone, I try to just make time and be there. There was a time when I felt really prompted to help a friend. And I didn't want to do it. Because I don't like babysitting. So that was not what I wanted to do. And I just thought, you know, I really don't like to babysit. So she was babysitting her grandkids. And I could tell that she was really overwhelmed in church on Sunday. And I was like, how long? How long do you have your grandkids and she was like, I think I have them for like seven more days. And I was like, Okay, I'm gonna, I'm gonna help her. Like, in the next seven days, I'm gonna help her. She seems really overwhelmed. And so I thought about it, and I was like, I hate babysitting. Maybe I could just bring her dinner, you know, like, not really follow the prompting, but like, still help. Yeah. Anyway, the week went on and I just pushed it away. And I didn't do it. A couple of weeks later, she was sharing in Sunday school, how overwhelmed she had been, and how difficult that week was and how she just needed a few minutes to herself to kind of regroup and she's like, right as she was feeling that, someone knocked on her door. And it was Julie and Julie came and said, like, Hey, I just want to take your grandkids for just a little bit. I just want to give you some time. And when I listened to her story, I was like pierced, right? Yeah. Because what I realized is Heavenly Father is going to accomplish his purposes, it's up to me whether I want to be a part of it. I miss out, I missed out on following through on a prompting, I miss out on being there. When God asked me to be I missed out on being there for a friend, I missed out on the blessings that come from serving, just because like I don't like to babysit, right? But God still accomplished his purpose. He still heard my friends prayer, he still knew she needed someone, he still sent someone, but that someone wasn't me. And after that experience, I was like, You know what, I really don't want to be the girl that misses out on all those opportunities to grow relationships and build connection. Like I wanted to, I want to be that girl. Like, I want him to say when I tell Brooke that someone needs her like, she's, she's gonna follow through, like, I can count on her. And not only that, but like, I want the blessings that come from the, those connections that you build when you're there for people, you know, that makes that makes a difference to me. Yeah, like that's, that's life changing. It makes just our existence meaningful and purposeful. And so after that experience, I've really tried to just listen and act. Even when I don't want to.

Kathryn Davis 31:20

Brooke, I actually think about that so much. I think you know, God doesn't need me. Yeah, he doesn't, right. Like, this is his work. It's his plan. God's going to accomplish His purpose and His work. Do I want to be a part of it? I love how you said that. What am I going to miss out on? If I'm not a part of it? It's It's me who's going to miss out not God or His other children. But it's me. Yeah, I just am grateful that you were vulnerable to share that because I think so many times we've been there. We're too busy doing other good things. Yeah. Right. And we miss out on being his hands and, and having that connection with him. And learning more about him. Brooke, one of our goals here on magnify is we love to leave every conversation with a small and simple suggestion that we can implement throughout the week and implement today. So what would you say is your small and simple action or idea that we can use to make our circles bigger?

Brooke Romney 32:25

I would say two things, if I can, I know you want one, but they go. So no, I want two. Okay, so the first thing that I would suggest is to pray and say who needs me, and just ask Heavenly Father who needs me? And you know what that person might be your child, that person might be your neighbor, that person might be your mom. And those are all like, whatever answer he gives you is a valid answer. Just be open to hearing who needs you. And then my second challenge would be to act to just act on that. And as often as you want to pray for that, do it. But you can do that and kneel down tonight, kneel down today and say, who needs me today? I know in our world, there are a lot of people who need someone. And so I know that he will have someone that will come to your mind that he has chosen specifically for you, where you can affect their life and make it better.

Kathryn Davis 33:18

I love that. And I love honestly, our conversation and understanding that we need to make our circles bigger. We need to whether we're introverts or extroverts that God is calling to us to make our circles bigger. We need that and the people we can invite into our circles need that as well. So I'm going to work on that this week. I'm going to pray for who needs me, and then I'm going to follow up. It was so fun to have you here Brooke to find more from Brooke you can follow her on Instagram at Brooke Romney writes or on her online blog at And don't forget to join us over on Instagram at magnify community. And of course, subscribe and listen to the Magnify podcast wherever you get your shows. Thanks for being here and let's meet up again next week.

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