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Yesterday I sat in my tiny bedroom closet of my partner and I’s apartment to record another episode of my upcoming podcast How To Be Human. It should debut in April (fingers crossed) as an entire season of humans sharing about how their making strides to be more whole, create justice in our world and seeking to grow.

I’m pretty sure some humans are potentially tired of hearing me talk about humanity and spirituality right now – but it feels so close to the touch for me. There’s just something there…

The conversation yesterday was about sobriety, walking with & through emotions and wrongness.

And, I have to tell you that being a witness to people’s stories and celebrating their movement is the greatest gift and honor God has ever presented me. I love holding people’s journey’s. And I acknowledge in those places of really holy messy holding that I also need to be held.

For me, a part of being held is standing in the vulnerability and intimacy of hearing one another’s stories. There’s power in that; reclaiming in that. Something really magical happens when two people share.

Yesterday, I listened as my guest described their moment of reckoning. Their coming home reality of what she described was “blowing up the box” of the tiny little space she had been handed to live in.

“God is just so much bigger than this narrative of what we’re told we have to be…”

It’s truly my favorite part of listening – hearing the victory of freedom and perception widening to realize I know myself because God knew me first….it is LIFE GIVING.

I sit with people from all walks life – some who cannot pull their threads out far enough to see my wholeness to be in ministry, some who are so depleted they need to hear they’re not alone, some who are doing the work to unravel words & find meaning in faith & some who simply just need to be held.

For whatever reason, God continues to place me at the in between. We cannot love all people, if we cannot sit with all people to hear, to engage & to reflect truth. Love is to be unconditional. And, if I want to be a visible beacon of that, my light must stay on. I also need to be held when I’m done holding & I have to access the ability to see each person as human – humans with the spirit of God in them. A gift that isn’t able to be stripped of a person.

We need to be held.

Do I always know what I believe or where that will carry me – no. But, God knows my heart & my transparent desire to the world.

I yearn for communion with God in all spaces, justice for those who have been oppressed & peace for us to flourish – all of us.

In this season of Lent, I’m leaning in to writing, viewing my faith differently and discerning the resources & relationships I need to be held in.

It’s humbling that any of you interact with my story, my truth seeking & wonderful little ride of ministry. You are beloved. You are wondrous. It’s equally humbling you share yours with me. Whether it be by messaging me on social media, sitting for a meal or simply saying “thank you” – it’s truly a gift.

Here’s the tea:

I change my mind all the time. I never want anyone to read the things I write and believe I have it all figured out. How to be love myself well, embrace my sexuality, gender and faith – it’s messy. We’re human & messy. My affirmation & my journey to lay down harm comes from God.

I’m constantly learning how to love people well and how we belong in this bigger picture where imagination and God meet. I’m always in motion. 

But in this ebb & flow of thought & feeling there’s a constant. I may question and I may change views on how I’d like to interact with people, church & how to be a Christian – but this remains true for me:

I know who I am

It’s in accepting, believing and embracing the truth of how MUCH God loves me that I could grab ahold of the child in me and say “I know you because God made me.”

I know who I am because God has told me who I am. We are on a forever journey to answer an infinite amount of questions – some of which we may never get the full answers on; however, the greatest question we have for ourselves lies tangibly in front of us.

Sometimes when I doubt my being – I look into the mirror, place my hand across my chest to grab the top of my left shoulder and I hold my body.

And say, Christ have mercy – I know who I am.”

In fact, I feel like I say Christ have mercy – a lot. Mercy for my doubt. Mercy for our churches. Mercy for our sense of “brokenness.” Mercy & grace for those who are doing their damnedest to just get out of bed to live.

Mercy.

This morning I had breakfast with a person who sits somewhere on the other side of my table. The side who doesn’t actually know what to do with me, but then again –  they do. I believe no matter how messy people get in their view of the sex I have behind closed doors, God has the answer planted inside of them to affirm me. Because just like I  know who I am, so do they. And the access to this is in the hands of the freedom of choice we have to sit, listen and do the work. It isn’t really about sex – it’s about control, power and fear of the unknown.

All things – even our Spirits – can be used for two things: harm or healing. And, Christ have mercy when we choose harm over healing.

So, here’s who I am:

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This is the face of a human who listens, falters, cares & humbly believes that Jesus has wellness for your heart & bodies – in all spaces. And, I know who I am. May we all know who we are and where we come from.

You are beloved. A wondrous creation. You deserve to flourish and know yourself and the depths of a creator who loves you so much – they left a marker in your being.

Jesus, give us the comfort to take hold of your love & grace for us. Sustain the notion that we are made for purpose of calling & that you’ve given us the map for such action in this world. Continue to help me see how you’ve made me. Continue to stretch me. Show us how to be people who hold and ask to be held by you. 

Amen.

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