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Tuesday
May192015

When Women Wonder If They Can

In this Attitude UPGRADE, Liz Cowen Furman, an author and artist who also runs a motel in Wyoming, tells how she overcame her fear and blew the doors off their new business.

“I didn’t know the first thing about running a motel,” Liz said, “But I knew we had to make it work or lose it. I was determined to NOT QUIT.”  

Do you identify with her words, like I (Dawn) do? Have you ever had something God placed in your life and you wondered if you were up for the challenge?

Liz continues . . .

After several bad managers, our family decided that if we were going to keep the seasonal motel in the family, like my Father-in-love instructed before he passed, we were going to have to run it ourselves.

Actually, my husband has a career in Denver and the motel is in Dubois, Wyoming, near Yellowstone, so that meant I was going to run it—initially with the help of my three teenage sons.

In the four years since we started, we have grown 87 percent. Several things helped us to succeed.

1. Pray!

I prayed without ceasing that God would open doors for us to use the motel to glorify Him. I prayed our guests would feel as if they were visiting our home. And I asked others to pray.

One night, alone at the motel—other than our guests—I was particularly discouraged. Dave and the boys had gone home for school to start. Missing my family, I prayed for God to show me if we were really supposed to be running this motel in the summers.

Next morning, a guest hung around until everyone left and then asked, “Liz, do you have a minute? I seem to have come to a lonely, desperate place in my life. I took this trip to see if I could figure it out. If not, well then … I am thinking of ending it."

“I noticed last night that you have found hope through your faith in God," he said. "Can you share with me how you did it?”

Holy Smokes, I was so excited! It was as if the answer to my plea was answered by this man’s question. Purpose!

We make s’mores nightly with the guests. The water bubbles by and the fire crackles low—the perfect place for meaningful conversations.

It is a bit like being a bartender. Folks will share their life story.

2. Seek wisdom.

I am on a mission to learn how to do everything better.

With my degree in plumbing from YouTube (ha ha), the classes we have taken from Wyoming Small Business Administration, and the books I have read—you must read Andy Andrews’ The Traveler’s Gift and The NoticerI am growing my knowledge of how to run a business, how to share my faith and how to trust God more.

3. Always be in motion.

It is amazing how much a person can get done when she doesn’t stop doing.

One day a fisherman asked, “Liz, I have been appointed by the regular guests to ask you a question, can I ask you now?”

“Shoot” I replied from the ladder where I was working on the gutters.

“Do you ever sleep?”

“What?” I said.

“Well, you are out here when we come out in the morning and when we go in to sleep. We just don’t think you ever stop.”

I laughed.

The days are long in the summer. I leave my home in Denver a size 12 and come home a size 8—another perk of running your own business.

Every spring I make a list and all summer I just do the next thing.

Whenever I feel overwhelmed (sometimes daily), I go back to the list and tell myself, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13).

What has God put on your heart to do for Him? Will you persist without exception to get it done? Will you seek wisdom? Will you pray?

Liz Cowen Furman is an author, artist, encourager, mentor, teacher and speaker. Writing is like the balm of Gilead for Liz. When she is not working on a book, she is writing articles and blogging. She has published three books, is a member of AWSA (Advanced Writer Speaker Association) and a graduate of Christian Communicator’s Conference. She has written humor for The Christian Pulse magazine and for AWSA’s Suicide Blog. Liz’s new Bible Study, Trusting God in Everything: A Bible Study for Women Who Wonder If They Can, releases May 20, 2015. Find it on Amazon.

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