Email encouragement for change.

Good morning,

I am posting a snippet of an email response I wrote to somebody this morning who reached out because they were distressed. It fits with a couple of other conversations I have had lately and I think it’s highly likely therefore that others may need some encouragement as well.. The context here is the person is aware of something big that needs to change one way or another.

“…In that I also totally see where you’re coming from. I think that the challenge you have is to trust the one next step whole heartedly… Even if you can predict what responses you’ll get from various parties. The tricky thing about identifying the step to change your life is that when it’s really really right and necessary and when we are really unhappy, the one step seems radical. And in that, there are typically at least 3 to a half dozen factors that immediately come to play and they are all overwhelming. (I almost didn’t get divorced because my neighbors would be sad! What?! Since when is that reason to stay in a marriage.) So my point is that you have to trust that one step enough to be willing to see what those responses actually are. You may be surprised with where there is not resistance that you thought there might be. You might be completely spot on about where there is painful change. But you have to be willing to feel that loss. And trust that in good time, committing to the change you know in your heart is good for you, will all work out. That you can’t be wrong unless you are trying to be right. Sometimes we think of these things so much that we think we know the way it is going to work – we “are right” about all these things and because of that conviction we have in our abilities to predict the future, we stay stuck. And I don’t think staying stuck is what you are looking for right now. I think you’re looking for freedom and love and all that good flowing Jesus stuff that happens when you commit to who God made you and the love you believe is possible for yourself and for the world. I was reminded today in a text that it is not us that love, it is God that loves through us – but we have to have open hearts and minds in order for that to happen.”

xoxo

Waking up feeling human.

I woke up this morning feeling the weight of “earth problems”. Not “the earth’s problems”, but “earth problems”. The kinds of things you think about  that are straight up from people, from work, from being American and wanting stuff. Earth stuff.

And as I started to think about how I was going to communicate the feeling on my chest regarding one part of my life. And as I texted my sister for perspective on another part of my life. And as I got out of bed and chose coffee over overdue yoga. I found myself in a heightened experience of being human. The anxiety, the decisions, the planning and for as much as I wanted to hold (I shouldn’t put that in the past tense, I’m still not over it…) but for as much as I want to hold on to these things so I can “figure them out” and make my rules and set my course, I realize I really really really really really like feeling supernatural better than feeling human.

So – how is this even a thing?

I am in a place at the moment where I have to find my way back to my heaven zone. The zone where there is a lot of grace offered to myself and to others. I am thinking about how I am feeling protective and realizing this a call for more love. “MORE LOVE??” is my knee jerk reaction: “But I’m LOVING SO MUCH!” Yes, Erin, love is exhausting. Hang in there. And my feelings of apathy are indicative of a need for more self control. Yes.. I love cookies and sleeping more than kale and yoga lately.

I think the most important paths in life are the ones we newly carve out from the place we woke up in back to the place of balance and healthy spiritual living. It proves what we established with God our creator is versatile. It’s less about being broken and lost for me, honestly. It’s about being aware and committed.

I can already feel my heart lightening as I pray while I write. There is this part of God I am tapping into today who is fierce and protective, lovingly maternal and stands their ground. (If you’re into playing with God energy in yoga culture, this aspect of God for me reads a lot like the Hindu goddess and the kundalini energy presented in Durga. If you’re not into the goddess thing, you can reach this same energy by meditation or bringing for imagery of the newly created surf and waves in the Creation story or the courage of Esther.) This part of God that I am calling into my chest and my living chases after what God wants. Lets go of what feels mine simply because of human inclination.

I guess I am sharing this all as some bonding motivation. Sharing the idea that we can take what it is we are feeling and transform that into spiritual energy. It’s fine being human; a gift really. For me though, I like the kind of human living that isn’t so caught up, tied up and extreme. I like the kind of human living that’s free and full of grace: joy and love. Peace and all that good stuff. Ahhhh … yes and self control. Cookies. sigh. But we move on, don’t we?

Alright – it’s a busy day! Time to get the suit jacket and the kiddos out of their respective places. SO much love. :)

xoxo namaste

A Saturday Before Christmas Visit from the Spirit of Revelation

I have one million and one things to do (including cleaning up a sequin tornado that ripped through my apartment yesterday) and here I am writing something out.. It’s on my heart. I can feel it.

Last night I made this master plan to how I was going to manage the oompa out of each minute in order to rest peacefully ready for Sunday’s events. Yet, I slept in two hours and the plan went out the window.

As I started the revision of the master plan, I noticed the one piece I wrote first: “coffee – Bible – pray” for 8a. And eeeeeeven though the coffee finished up in the pot at 9 (missing the original start time), my inclination to head out to Walgreens and run other quick errands subsided to the fact that I told myself yesterday I needed to sit still and wake up with God.

** Plus – I mean – it just wouldn’t make sense to go to Walgreens now when I have to go back later to pick up pictures. :)

So there I was, praying on an Ephesians verse and perusing a folder on my computer titled “Trip to Love” from my 3500 mile road trip with Ellen and Lucy, picking out pictures to print. And in the sub folder of that folder titled “Bon Voyage, Amarillo, ABQ”, I stumbled on a gorgeous pic of my “9-year-old woman” – post lavender tub soak – with a vintage towel passed down from my Grandmother wrapped around her head and in an oversized white bathrobe against her tan skin.

My heart pumped so hard in seeing this picture as a gift for my mom that nothing else seemed to matter. I realized how much bullshit my mind had made Christmas and the inspiration I felt started to calm me…

The towel was her mother’s, the girl in it is her daughter’s and this as a bookmark for her Bible with a note of the strongest appreciation of her love that I can possibly put into words is so much better than running to Chesterfield for brunch gift certificates. Yes – We’ll go there and we’ll eat and we’ll gush about the picture of Ellen that made us both cry.

My plan doesn’t really matter to me anymore. And really – this doesn’t surprise me. As type-A as I am, I haven’t made a to do list for my personal life in so long as this year brought me to a new level of living so intentionally that I always had what I needed. And living faithfully in this manner, resisting panic and marketing prompts, consistently allowed me the awareness of the one next step needed to move forward.

Yet, it was four days before Christmas Eve and the pressure of “Christmas” actually put my brain in a mode of operation that I forgot that I am already ready simply because I am alive. I have what I need. And I know my one next step to enhance, express, and evolve.

I pray that all of you trust your hearts this Christmas. If there is a moment you would rather stay home immersed in sequins than run out and do one more thing, stay home. If on Christmas Eve, sitting at home by your tree sounds better than passing time with too much wine – care for yourself.

The way the world works is tricky business. And we as people have gotten really good at thinking and planning and making really super huge lists. We think we are doing the right thing because we are meeting (or at least trying to meet) expectations. But where did they come from? Whose expectations are they, really?

I know this about myself: whenever I feel overwhelmed, it’s usually because I am trying to do something right by way of some other definition. I am praying through a smile and semi-teary eyes right now because I have a way out of this now. It’s time-tested, even. Simply put – the way out is to listen to myself – to my heart – and do that thing that seems counter-productive. The next step from this unconventional place always makes more sense than the first one I thought of because “I had to”:

Each time I do this, I end up aligned more with my heart and therefore able to be a more loving, peaceful presence in this heart-sick world.

Let the spirit guide you in these final days to Christmas. namaste xo

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