i was so blessed to meet face to face so many i had grown to know and grown to love, through their blogs and our shared emails. people like stephanie, anj, deb, idelette, lisa and mike. and people i was to meet like connie, neritia, lynn, georgia and all of the linwood house women and men.
it still seems so surreal. walking around the airport in seattle looking for a face i had only imagined. meeting anj and then deb and jeff and driving north to vancouver still seems like such a dream to me. driving through the lights of downtown vancouver was breathtaking and it didn't seem real until we hit the ferry dock and stepped out into the crisp, breeze off the bay.
arriving into the warm hug that is linwood house was richer than most experiences i have ever known. my room mate for the week was unable to attend, and that meant i had a room to myself, such an extravagant luxury for my exhausted soul.
i have blogged on the experiences here, here, here, here and here, but i have never publically owned my path. this past month on another surreal, unexpected amazing adventure i knew i was ready to do that now. i have spent the last 525,600 minutes growing into my mission. a year ago it meant a totally different thing to me than it does today. it has grown, expanded and literally taken on a life of it's own. mine, that is.
the process at the workshop is actually a brilliant procedure of boiling down the things that you are passionate about, distilling those things from your life that you cannot live without. finding only the thing that makes you tick, makes your heart sing, makes you want to wake up every morning and clarifies the reason you were placed here on this earth. i know it's quite a claim, but i really do believe it's true. at least i know it has been this way for me.
it's just that it was so HUGE, so life altering that i truly needed to absorb it, to own it and to grow into it. it's me - but the me i long to be. i was afraid of eyes rolling if i said it out loud. 'that's not you' or 'you are not'. like those with power and authority in my life have always done. i'm not sure who i thought those imaginary critics actually were - but they were as real as the breath i just took to me. maybe they still are, but i don't seem to care as much any more.
i have tried to think of a metaphor that describes what getting to know my mission statement has been like for me. i think i can only describe it as a second skin. i would step into it, like a wet suit, try it on, sit with it, look at myself in the mirror of my soul and think 'maybe one day' or 'what does this really mean?' then i'd take it off, carefully lay it aside and dream of one day living in that skin, of becoming that person i only allowed myself to fantasize about.
this becoming has been one of the most intense, challenging, incredible, expanding, breath-taking experiences of my life. it was my own private journey that others built into without even knowing they were participating. that holy wind would blow the most beautiful parcels of confirmation my way like feathers floating into my hands. i'd hear a soft whisper of 'see, this is truly who you are', and 'yes, dear one, this, this is your destiny'. i could hardly believe the love that those feathers brought to me. the beautiful confirmation from god each one was along the way. they have nourished me in the deep, dark, empty places in my soul. 'oh yes, dear one, i have created you for this. this is why you are here. there is this void that only you can fill - it's what you were made for.'
it's really what has kept me going these past 525,600 minutes.
the masterful process idelette uses in refining each one's path is so dynamic and alive. each participant is bathed in prayer throughout the week and given so much support to come to the point of knowing the words of the ugly sentence that begins as your mission statement. then the group as a whole helps to purify and beautify and eventually personify the words until it clicks. it is an amazing process. much like a verbal birth. i 'heard' the click when the words were right deep in my soul. it echoes still.
after each participant clicks with their words they stand and own their path to the rest of the group. i still remember the excitement of saying those words out loud in public. i haven't done so since. they are weighty words for me. i don't take them lightly. i have made every large decision this past year by these words. i have carved them into my soul and pondered, meditated and studied them. what do they mean? how must i change? what doors do they open? what doors do they close? so many questions and so many answers.
hi, my name is heidi, and i am a storyteller of redemptive truth.
i'm not taking this blog from it's anonymous status, i realized that i may need it to blow off steam in the new place we land. i had hoped to have a new blog ready in my own name, owning my path, but life has definitely got a mind of it's own this past month.
i know it doesn't look that scary. 'what did you get so tied up about?' i question even now. 'what was the big deal?' it almost looks silly to be afraid of those words. but they are tied right into the very fiber of my being. they will change who i am today into who i will become along my redemptive journey.
i will tell more about the process of growing into these words, especially this past month soon. i just knew i needed to pay tribute to the anniversary or actually the conception of my path.