Word of the Week

Has there been moment in the past couple of weeks when you've felt beyond exhausted?

To our tired bodies and souls, enter this week's word: rest.

Now, I know what you might be thinking. Yeah, yeah, yeah I know what this post is going to be about. Go to bed earlier. Stop. Play. Have a Sabbath moment. But here's the thing, I'm not (though of course all of those are good things).

What I do want you to think about today, however, is rest in your bandwidth.

How might your soul benefit from letting a thing or two in your schedule rest?

Several months ago, I became quite aware of my breathlessness. For me, I feel breathless when I'm running between commitments like a chicken with my head cut off, late to appointments I promised myself I would not be late to, or having restless after restless night of sleep (because the pace of my day has allowed for no reflection or downtime in daytime hours).

So in my breathlessness I took an adult time out.

I sat still. Then, I made a list. What was my work to do I asked myself.

One of the things that didn't make my list felt surprising: writing for publication. Something I've been doing for over 10 years.

You see this thing happens when you write a book, people expect you to write more. And there's so much that goes into getting to the starting gate of publishing a book besides just writing the actual book (such is post for another day). I thought I would be publishing another book soon. I have been drafting one for awhile. But in taking a minute to listen, I realized I needed to let any striving toward drafting, preparing to publish or publishing go for now.

I needed to rest from this particular work.

As much as I knew this was the right decision, it has been scary too. For when you rest, you like a part of your identity go. When you rest, you allow others to think whatever they want about you. When you rest, you let go of control of the outcome.

For trust is required in rest.

You lay something down in rest believing that if that thing is yours to pick up again it will be there. And if it is not yours to pick up again, it won't be.

Tricia Hersey in a wonderful new book called Rest Is Resistance: A Manifesto says this, "You were not just born to center your entire existence on work and labor. You were born to heal, to grow, to be of service to yourself and community, to practice, to experiment, to create, to have space, to dream, and to connect.”

So, what is one thing can you stop doing this week and let rest? How can you make space in your life for everyday miracles to find you?

On the journey with you to stop more often and make space for the best stuff in life--



When is the last time you knew you were supposed to do something but were afraid?

You felt the nudge. You heard the call. You saw the first step clearly.

But then your mind rushed with what if questions. You heard all the naysayers’ opinions clouding your head. You knew the obstacles you’d face if you kept going.

So much in you said stop! And so much in your felt like go!

To this enter this week's word: courage. Courage: the quality of mind or spirit that enables a person to face difficulty, danger, pain without fear; bravery.

Talking about growing in courage might just seem like one more thing that is too much of an ask.

You’re tired.

You’re overwhelmed with LIFE.

You cannot absolutely cannot do ONE more thing that is not on your already weird daily schedule.

But I am not talking about one more thing the way that our dentist reminds us to remember to floss or our doctor tells us to eat more vegetables . . .

I am talking about a way of living where our lives are in alignment with who you really are. I am talking about taking steps in the direction of YOUR voice that God has given YOU to use to bring light and hope to the world.

As terrible as it feels to do that _______ thing that is on your heart and mind as what you know the Spirit is nudging you to do next—I tell you THIS IS THE MOMENT WHERE YOUR LIFE GETS SO GOOD.

Recently I had an experience where I had to chose between an opportunity similar to what I've always done and on the other side a chance to stand up for myself in a way that feel really right but risky.

In being courageous, maybe I'd loose a friend?

Maybe I'd loose the chance to do something I love for a very long time.

Maybe people would think (insert bad things here) of me. But I knew what I had to do even if it hurt . . .

I think you know what you need to do just as I did. God is with you. God is guiding you. So, my friend, gather your courage and take the next step soon.

Cheering you on now and always-



Is there anything that you've been holding on to for dear life?

It could be an emotional state (like trying not to get angry). Or a project at work (that your boss wants to take from you but you know you deserve). Or a daughter or son in distress (whom you worry about nightly).

To these questions, enter our word of the week-- unraveled, a word that means to separate or disentangle the threads or free from complication or difficulty.

A couple years ago, I retreated for a week with 12 other writers at a beautiful place around a lake in North Carolina. We drafted stories every morning and shared words at night of our lives that we hope will one day find a way in a book. Our teacher encouraged us not just to pen the situations we want to tell but to write the stories-- what lies beneath. She said stay curious about anything you just don't understand.

Let me tell you, this kind of work shakes you. It stirs up threads in you you long thought were gone. It saws down cracked edges that you'd rather not examine.

But, unraveling, as I did that week on the page is a pathway to freedom. In my case, unraveling for me means talking publicly about what it means for me to be estranged from my biological family. Believing that my spiritual path is letting go of an unhealthy system, so I can keep creating a more life-giving one in my own home. Unraveling, as I see it, is nothing to be ashamed of. I am not doing anything wrong; it is a good God-given work for me to do.

Unraveling means you have to lose to gain.

For you, your unraveling work might mean saying goodbye to something you thought you'd always do or something you thought you'd always be so that God can do something new and beautiful with what you have.

So, I'm wondering this week, what has got you tightly wound?

Name it.

If you need a visual, find some yarn. Unravel the whole spool. Place it somewhere in your house that you'll see it. Remind yourself that even in a mess of letting go, God is doing something good.