If you’re on Facebook, you’re probably used to posting a response to that question, “What’s on your mind?” Here’s the answer I just posted: I asked God for a friend and waited long. Then Sue came into my life 22 years ago. Now she’s in Minnesota and I’m in Arizona, yet we still make time to listen and grow. Thanks, God! (Just got off the phone w/ Sue. I’m smiling here.)
Tonight while discussing a book we’re reading I said, “Funny how the same personal & spiritual “learning” themes crop up repeatedly for each of us.”
“Indeed,” said Sue. “We could beat ourselves up for that, you know.” Instead we’re choosing to agree with God that we’re both discovering new layers of deeper awareness and development. It’s a messy process at times.
After telling Sue “good-bye” and turning off my cell phone, I flashed back to something I wrote recently.
“Growth for me is an unpredictable adventure. I know it sounds odd, but I’ve ceased crawling internally. In my mental image, I didn’t have room to stand, because I moved through a small tunnel. Ironically, I visualized myself thriving and advancing on my knees, as if that was the only way spiritual progress could be made.
“Discussing this with my life coach, I decided that I didn’t wish to crawl anymore. The imaginary walls expanded and I stood. My breathing is freer (it’s easier when I’m not bent over!). Standing up means that I accept how good it is to say no at times and that I stop doing for others what they can do for themselves, allowing them to implement their own ideas and dreams.
“I think my narrow tunnel had been built with the shoulds and musts I’ve heard and internalized. I don’t like to admit it, but I probably allowed others’ opinions to keep me on my knees. Yet, I don’t have to crawl; I have colorful options that are beyond mere black-and-white thinking.” (Excerpt between the quotes is from It’s a Wonderful (Imperfect) Life: Devotional Readings for Women Who Strive Too Hard to Make It Just Right.)
Sue and I invite you to join us in this journey to “stop beating ourselves up” about the inherently messy growth process. What say you?