Hope: The Anchor for My Soul, Not My Plan

I wrote this piece for an online magazine but it did not get picked up. The crazy part is that I wrote it months ago when my hope series was the tiniest of ideas. Thought it was a great way to close the week, so here it is!~~~ Hope can be a tricky concept for many us, especially those of us who have gone through any kind of major struggle, trauma, loss or tragedy in our lives.

I am a survivor of infertility and loss.

Through our infertility journey hope at times was our best friend and at other times was our worst enemy.

You see my faith did not grow strong until after our infertility journey ended. And you may be surprised, as our journey ended without the desired result of babies. I usually tell people there is nothing like being a mental health therapist who struggled with infertility to make you be pretty mad at God.

And yet, here I am, my faith the strongest it has ever been.

This strength was not found in hope, but rather in allowing myself to doubt and question. And yes, to even be angry with God.

It was within my doubt, questioning and anger, and allowing myself to fully embrace it all, that His clarity washed over me.

And hope shined again; a healthier hope that is.

Not the hope that if we kept trying, kept praying, kept doing what society told us to do that God would do our will because we had hope.

I had to learn to let go of this hope because if I am truthful it was only the hope for things to turn out the way I wanted; how I thought things needed to be.

It was the clarity of a healthier hope that came with learning to practice active acceptance of what we cannot change balanced with the trust that He holds the end of our story.

Within my working faith, within the doubt and the questioning, I allowed enough room for hope to be a true anchor.

We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. (Hebrews 6:19 NIV)

This work has allowed hope to be an anchor for my soul, not a hope for my plan, but the clarity and trust in His.

And, so I will continue to hold His hope for my life, even if it has not necessarily turned out how I planned.

Because, I know he has the end of my story, and I trust it is amazing.

 
 

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Don't miss Taking Flightnow available!

 
 

My Christian Complexity

I am a Christian. I curse...a lot. I have tattoos. I believe in the power of love and connection. I believe in the Universe. I am afraid and brave all of the time. I doubt and question a lot. And, I believe.

I am complex.

The EQUINOX is here on March 20th 2015 and a powerful portal is opening up with a TOTAL SOLAR ECLIPSE and New Moon in Pisces on the same day!

What does this means exactly. As I have read and been told by some of my much better educated in this realm friends, it means rebirth and starting anew, a reset and the power to get it all done!

Sounds like my kind of magic and exactly what I (and we all) need.

But I had to ask my friend Kaeleigh, "But what does that mean for me?"

To which she reminded me that I am pretty aligned with these things and making the world a better place. But, I had to push her.

"But what can I do?"

I mean, I'd like to capitalize on this too! Ever Upward could really use this power right about now!

And her response seriously made me laugh out loud.

"For you oh, Christian magoo, I suggest meditating and maybe a vision board."

I love it. She's right, how does one combine this kind of thought with their Christian faith?

My self-care includes practices such as yoga, meditation, tapping and believing in the power of the Universe. This may make some Christians cringe. But, when I refer to the Universe I believe the Universe was created by God. And yes, Jesus is my Savior.

Can I hold onto to these truths? I think so. I mean life is hard and people are complicated. And, thus you have the complexity of me. As I think we all are. Just as I told one of my clients today as we were discussing God, life and recovery; do what you feel drawn to, what works for you and give yourself permission that it doesn't necessarily have to fit in one box.

Be you.

Be fully you, in all her complex glory.

I responded to Kaeleigh that this Christian needs some fucking star power, pixie dust, unicorn glitter and magic too. And, so I meditated (as I do every day). And I prayed. And prayed. And prayed some more. And read some scripture. And, I made that vision board, filling it with hopes, dreams and realities. And, I've decided to share it with you because then it is like planting it in the fertile ground to grow strong roots toward the ever shining sun. Because, the world needs the light of healthier messages of ever upward in the infertility, loss and recovery world. And, I am ready to shine it.

 
 

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Only 18 days left on the Thunderclap campaign and 10 pledges left for the world to see Ever Upward on their social media walls on April 7th. Please help me by pledging a post.

If you have read Ever Upward, please consider doing an Amazon review. I am trying to get to 50 reviews by launch. Just click the Kindle version of the book in order to do so. Thank you!

Isaiah: My Joyful Shout To Fill the World

My friend and fellow warrior over at Rejoice, Beloved reblogged one of my posts and in a comment she wrote she led me to more clarity.

She pointed me in the direction of Isaiah 54, and in those words of scripture I found another piece of my soul.

Isaiah

 
 

Sing, childless woman, you who have never given birth.Raise a joyful shout, you who have never gone through labor...

Enlarge your house. You are going to need a bigger place; don’t underestimate the amount of room that you’ll need. So build, build, build.

You will increase in every direction to fill the world...

Don’t be afraid, for there is no one to shame you.Don’t fear humiliation, for there is no one to disgrace you...

She wrote that my ever upward is my joyful shout to the world. And, in reading her words I felt myself give myself the permission I need to really fill the world with my singing.

To build, to fill the world.

To walk straight through my fears.

This light inside of me to speak, to educate, to help and to give myself and others permission.

Permission to speak our truth.

Permission to embrace our whole story.

Permission to practice our recovery.

Permission to own it all.

Ever upward is my joyful shout.

Ever upward is my mark on the world; my legacy, just not left in the legacy of my own children.

Ever upward is my continued seeking and fighting to reveal our shame and rise above it.

Ever upward is my connection to my story and to our story.

Because our stories, our shout or whisper to the world, is the light and the love of ever upward.

*To read more about my story and my recovery make sure to pick up a copy of the very soon to be published Ever Upward: Overcoming the Lifelong Losses of Infertility to Own a Childfree Life.*

If you found this post enjoyable, inspiring, helpful, hopeful, interesting or even infuriating ;), please take the time and the chance to share it through your social media! More shares means more eyes, means more people helped and the message heard on a wider scale. Thank you! Justine