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Recently I’ve realised that there are a host of people out there who are called to people, but are naturally introverted themselves.
This is me. I never realised it was me until I found myself day dreaming of quiet vistas, lakes, forests, mountains and isolation. I don’t know if I changed over the years, or it’s just been highlighted by the fact that I have less time alone due to being a mother, and having a business.
It’s a difficult tension to balance when you are called to connect and to genuinely touch heart to heart with others, while also needing space and time alone and quiet, in order to fill up so you can cope with the people you’re called to!
I’ve had the draft for this blog post sitting here for a while now, and I think I was in the middle of walking through a fresh lesson on this, and needed to come through it before writing it down.
Recently I walked through a very painful season of having to deconstruct many things I hadn’t realised I’ve been doing. I was disappointed, hurt, angry and disgruntled with God.
I have just completed walking through the 30-day devotional ‘Dreaming’ which was released in March of this year. Following the completion of the ‘Dare to Ask’ book, I was led on this crazy adventure of God, of not only making the music that the book is about, but also on a journey of understanding that this journey of ‘Daring to Ask’ is comprised of a journey within itself.
I'm spending a lot of time writing at the moment, about being 'awakened'. It's a journey many of us have been through, some of us are in the middle of, and some long for. Some don't even know this journey is available to them! Being 'awakened' is the process of 'waking up' spiritually, to who we are, what our purpose is, and how God wants to partner with us.
Not all of us like to dance. Some people go through all of life without ever giving it a try. Some make a lifestyle of dance and others of us pine for a time where we used to dance as a way of life.
For me, I spent much of my life watching dance, teaching dance and dancing myself. It was when I was crippled by back pain that I started pulling back from the thing I so loved. Now if I see dances and dance movies that harken back to my previous life, I find it upsetting and saddening to think back to how my body used to feel and move.
It's an involuntary action that we do whether we're awake or asleep, thinking about it, or not, resting or running, happy or sad. We all breathe. Sometimes we are more aware of our breathing patterns than at other times. We may try breathing exercises or be intentional about slowing our breathing down for health reasons, but we all go through a large proportion of the day without thinking about our breathing.
What about the breath of God? What effect does that have on my life?
It occurred to me recently how so many of us are essentially sleepwalking.
We go through life, without really participating in it.
We're sat at the game and watching it unfold before our eyes, without ever rolling the dice. We walk through the garden without really ever stopping to see what is surrounding us, and we miss the scent of the flowers, and the feel of the wind on our faces.
Being overcome by something doesn't usually have positive connotations. It implies succumbing to something, giving in to something that is too strong for us to withstand. It's not something that comes with choice, it's something that overpowers us and that goes against our will.
This is a picture painted with the colour of fear, and doesn't appeal to even the strongest of us.
What if that is exactly what needs to happen?
At the start of the year I set myself up for a personal challenge; 'To regularly post a video of me sitting at my piano, playing and singing'.
For me, it is a scary challenge, and is definitely a case of 'biting the bullet'. In my first video, I explained that the reason for the challenge was to do something practical and to 'make a statement' to myself, in order to counteract a lot of negativity I had heard through my life about my voice.
I hate cheesy New Years blog posts that try to convince you that the passing of a new day will somehow magically cause a reset in our lives, and that we get to start again come 00:01 on January 1st.
So this won't be one.
We don't get to hit reset. We have to live with all that went down in the previous year, and although we may have renewed hope that the next year will be better, there is no guarantee of this, and we don't always know how to make that happen.
I just got home from 10 days away on the Ascend Carmel program, where I serve on the leadership team. Many amazing things happened during this 10 days, most of which are not my stories to tell. But the thing that most impacted me about this 10 days away, was the courage that the participants showed in being vulnerable.
Recently I've been thinking a lot about how we have to walk through lessons and seasons more than once. It's a shame we don't learn all we need to learn the first time we encounter a lesson. Like children, it seems that we need constant reminders and experiences that help us re-learn the lessons He needs us to learn.