Friday, May 30, 2014

Nothing To Be Earned (a five minute friday)

My Five Minute Friday on: Nothing

I am trying to retrain myself. To stop putting so much value on earnings.

That somehow there is something I can always do to find favor.

All my strivings and hard work are not in vain and are filling a bank account somewhere that measures how much I'm worth.

But no matter how much I have done to please others or earn esteem, I always come up empty.

I cannot do enough.

Never enough.

I have wrestled with understanding love. Why wouldn't it fit into society's mold?

Why shouldn't I have to measure up? Be labeled a "success"? Earn the respect of my peers?

That means something…doesn't it?

But the other day, friends offered my family a gift. It was something unearned. And they had NO REASON to give it.

I racked my brain to figure out motive. To understand why they would offer this to us? There was NOTHING in it for them.

And then it overwhelmed me — this picture of God-love.

Someone gave me a gift I didn't deserve. A gift I didn't earn.

I find myself trying to earn it somehow. What can I do to repay them? How can return the favor?

But no.

The cross is more than this. A "you-did-not-have-to" kind of love that blows me away.

Because seriously, this kind of love doesn't happen everyday.

But maybe it should.

Not because of anything I've earned or done.


Linking today with…

Monday, May 19, 2014

One Way to Find Your People

There is something tremendously impactful when kindred women come together.

When women who understand the ebb and flow of similar life situations — whether it be the same baggage, or the same stage of motherhood, or a similar passion or focus — find each other. Encourage each other.

It's a beautiful thing.

But sometimes, it's hard to find "your people."

I have been a part of two different online community groups that (in)courage has to offer. And have reaped the benefits of encouragement and shared knowledge the groups have afforded me.

The spring/summer session for community groups begins next week and TODAY is your opportunity to register for one.

I have the honor and privilege this session of co-leading an abuse survivors group, called Healing (in)Him, with some friends of mine. (Click here to sign up!)

But there are MANY different groups being offered at this time — over 70!

Peruse the list. Find a group that interests you and bravely sign-up. It's that easy.

Want more info or have a question, email me or check out the FAQ page.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Not Afraid of Mud Puddles (a five minute friday)

My Five Minute Friday on: Mess

I made a list of all the things that needed to be done. Floors mopped & vacuumed, furniture dusted, bookcase straightened up, tables cleared off…

It took the better part of a week to get the three most important rooms in our house clean and tidy for my (in)RL meet-up guests. And we worked really hard.

What once held evidence of well, life, was now tidy and inviting. And for a brief moment I sat on the couch, exhausted, surveying the clean and organized and felt at peace in the space.

But today, a week later, it's bags of bears for Rise and Shine Movement's teddy bear drive and books and legos and shoes with cast off socks. It didn't take long to get back here.

I notice the contrast — of welcoming strangers into my straightened home, of presenting a "put together" first impression.

In all reality, though, the clean house is not a reflection of life. My life is messy — my house, my relationships, my heart.

It's funny because we have to invite people into our mess. We have to open the door to our cluttered and dust bunny filled houses. Let you see behind the closed doors that are hiding all the junk that normally takes up space on our living room floors.

Why do we think people wouldn't like us if they saw our mess?

Some days are so bad I feel like I'm sitting in a mud puddle, all gloopy and dirty. I used to think no one would want to crawl into the mud puddle with me. That I'd have to hose off first.

But I have friends, good friends, who have seen me there and sat down in it with me. Who weren't afraid to get mud on them, too.

They weren't afraid of the mess. And now I'm not afraid of it either.

Linking today with…

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