Friday, July 29, 2011

The Weight We Carry

I have recently embarked on a fabulous (and altogether frightening) journey to get myself healthy. Recently with some dedication (and the world's greatest accountability team, you know who you are-love you lots!) I have seen the success of losing my first 8 pounds...and it feels great. Feels I could run a marathon now...(which I can't...but I will!) it's such exhilaration. One comparison that people do within the weight loss and nutrition communities is they compare the weight they were carrying to various objects in life. My current loss is about the size of a sack of potatoes or a newborn baby...I just lost a sack of potatoes...And my brain has a momentary euphoria where I also think, "Wow, potatoes seem really heavy! What a relief to not carry them around anymore!"

Spiritually, I think we do this to ourselves as well. There are weights that we all carry on a daily basis, not even realizing how much they bring us down. and marriage drama...relationships issues...inner demons and battles within ourselves....How exhausting they are to our soul to exert on a daily basis. We just get used to carrying them, not realizing the damage they do to our soul, much like the damage being overweight does to a body. We carry them because they are comfortable, they are familiar, and it seems easier to do nothing than to do something.

I want to encourage you today to lose some weight. Whatever you have weighing on your heart, your mind, your soul, give it up...let it go...put it in the hands that are bigger than your own, because HIS hands were meant to carry it...not ours. The freedom will be exhilarating and you will be amazed at the things you can do for Christ that your "weight" held you back from before.

What is "weighing" you down?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

You Never Forget The Road Home...

This one has been brewing in me for a few days, but I had to gather the words to get it out right...This past weekend, I experienced a bittersweet reunion of some of the best friendships in my life, as we gathered to celebrate the life of our mentor, Paul.

Paul was the kind of man who could make you feel like you were the only person in the room, that when you asked for a minute, he gave you could laugh hysterically or cry unashamedly in his office, no matter how much of a "grown up" you assumed yourself to be. Paul was a great man of truth, love and, it went as no suprise that 40+ of Paul's "kids" whom he had impacted over the years took a screeching halt to their lives and journeyed "Home" for Paul's memorial, and to honor him by lifting their voices to the Lord he loved and served wholeheartedly.

It was the kind of weekend Paul would have loved. Filled with laughter, hugs, and inside jokes that could be resurrected 6 years later and STILL be funny. Some of us have grown older, lost and gained weight, lost and gained spouses, lost hair, gained child (ren)? Some friendships, that were beautiful in college, have simply aged like a fine wine, growing sweeter, deeper and more robust over time. It was the kind of reunion that was healing for the soul...

Reunions always scare people...they sit in the parking lot, fidgeting with this shirt that they are pretending they didnt just buy for the occasion, that stray hair, that smudge of eyeliner...worried about what people will think...that was not the case. I can say I proudly sped all the way to get there, and when I got there, it was like 6 years had never happened...Each hug, each welcoming and open set of arms held me just a little longer, and with each hug, I felt more and more healing renewal enter my soul.

We waste so much time in our adult lives, attached to work, email, and rushing. We fight and struggle so hard to pay those bills and make something of ourselves, that we push to the side who we were. What we used to be. What really used to matter...Our core selves, a broken and haggard compilation of who we really want to be, when we are free to be. Sometimes, you just need to give your soul moments of healing and rebuilding.

I remember when I left for college, my mother hugged me and said "This will always be your home, but I know it will never be home again." It confused me for the longest time, until I had the chance to go "Home" this weekend, and be embraced by the friends, mentors and family who had helped to shape me to who I was and who I need to remember to be.

Sometimes you need to go Home to get back to yourself again...