September was busy, good busy. Feeling alive busy. Living on purpose busy.
Apparently, busy has NOT included writing blog posts, since this is my first post since LAST month’s Share Four Something round up. For those of you who are new here, every month I wrap up the month by sharing “four somethings” in a link up with a group of writing sisters. Each month, we share something loved, something said, something learned and something read. For me, it has been an enlightening way to evaluate how my journey has unfolded over the previous month and hopefully, to share something meaningful with you. Click HERE to read the other 2018 entries.
Here is what September had to offer.
I LOVED talking about being brave and living on purpose with all kinds of lovely people in a variety of different settings this month. Last weekend, I had the privilege of traveling home to Texas to do a Being Brave event at Arborlawn United Methodist Church. In addition to making 60+ new friends, my mom and a couple of friends from high school/ college were in attendance. Since my mom has been my biggest cheerleader my whole life, it was especially satisfying to finally have her there to hear this message God has given me to share. When you are bursting with good news, you just want to tell your mom, right?
Shout out to my new friends at Arborlawn who may joining us on the blog for the first time this month!! Your hospitality, graciousness and Texas sized hearts remind me why I am proud to say I’m from Texas. Thank you for sharing your weekend with me!
When I was thinking about something to share here, several different conversations popped into my mind. Because I talk about the courage of being vulnerable for a living, and then try to model vulnerability as a teaching tool, part of the beautiful result is people share their hearts and stories with me. As I think back over those conversations and what each person SAID, one theme is repeated over and over again:
It was perfect timing.
I don’t always know why people show up at one of my events or read something I wrote. I’m not often privy to the reasons why people sit down at the bible study table at The Lamb Center. I don’t know why you struck up a conversation with the stranger in line, picked up the book that caught your eye, or opened that email when you did. But time and time again, I see evidence of Someone who does know, Someone who directs all our steps into perfect choreography. I love the word “invitation” and I believe with all my heart that God orchestrates those invitations to take that next step in just the right timing. What happened in that moment is NOT a coincidence, but a divine appointment. When we are open to the idea that God has a hand in this crazy Universe, and we are willing to follow His nudges and say Yes to those invitations when they come, we often find we hear just what we needed to hear or get the thing we most needed to get. And the timing, the arrival of this gift of grace, feels almost magical. It is these magical moments when our Creator God reaches down into our ordinary lives to say “I see you. I love you. You are not alone.”
I LEARNED how to use Zoom this month and frankly, I’m feeling pretty proud of myself. I am meeting weekly by Zoom video conferencing with five brave ladies for a group coaching program called Beyond Brave and we are having a blast, despite my awkwardness as the Zoom commander.
Let’s pause a minute to enjoy the phrase “Zoom commander.” 🙂
I love that I can gather people in Minnesota, Connecticut and Virginia all in one “room” to encourage each other and talk about things that really matter to us. Among other things, we are talking about regaining our POWER by turning down the volume on the voice of our inner critics, and about discovering and tapping into our life PURPOSE to motivate us in chasing our dreams. In the next few weeks, we will also look at how to PLAN for our best lives by developing good habits, setting achievable goals and celebrating forward action. This is a brand new format for me, a messy experiment with something I’ve never tried before. Being a beginner is scary, but exhilarating for all six of us, and I am honored to be on the journey with this crew. We are only a third of the way through the curriculum, but I can already see the potential here for more group and individual coaching over Zoom. I plan to run the next 6 week session of Beyond Brave starting in January, so stay tuned!
Because I hurried through my description of last month’s book recommendation, I want to share something specific I READ in Playing Big: Practical Wisdom for Women Who Want to Speak Up, Create and Lead that has continued to resonant with me in September.
One of my favorite chapters in the book is called “A Very Old New Way of Looking at Fear.” According to the author Tara Mohr, the Hebrew Bible uses two different words for fear.
Pachad and Yirah.
Pachad is the fear of projected or imagined things. This is the over-reactive, irrational fear that stems from worries about what could happen and the worst case scenarios we imagine. This is the fear that often speaks through the voice of the inner critic. It is our “lizard brain” fear and usually what we are talking about when we talk about the fear that keeps us stuck.
Here is where it gets REALLY fun!
The second word for fear often found in the Hebrew bible is Yirah. According to Tara, Yirah has three different meanings:
- The feeling that overcomes us when we inhabit a larger space than we are used to.
- The feeling we experience when we suddenly come into possession of considerably more energy than we had before.
- The feeling we have in the presence of the Divine.
Yirah is the fear you feel when you realize you are onto something big, when you are stepping into your calling, when you experience a “miraculous sense of truth and sacredness” and realize you are terrified…in a GOOD way!
Yirah is feeling fully alive, tingles running down to your fingertips and up to your scalp. Yirah is being connected to the Holy Spirit, in the flow, in alignment with your purpose, living right on the edge of YIKES! Perhaps Yirah is even connected to being bold, resilient, authentic, vulnerable, engaged and empowered.
Obviously, if you know me at all, you know that this word is my new favorite thing EVER and I am now chasing down strangers to tell them about the two kinds of fear. AND I am watching for and savoring Yirah when I experience it in my own life, like when I stand in front of 60 strangers talking about building resilience to shame or using Zoom for the first time to talk about purpose with new friends.
Bottom line, we all need more Yirah in our life! How about you, tell me in the comments when you have experienced YIRAH.
Bonus recommendation: Since I am talking about the same non-fiction book two months in a row, you get a bonus fiction recommendation this month. I just finished the Crazy Rich Asian trilogy and it was a hoot! I loved it and would highly recommend if you need to turn off CNN and take a breather from reality. Looking forward to seeing the movie!
As always, be sure to check out my smart friends and hear about their Four Somethings HERE!