|Morning at Noosa Headland|
Today I took a moment to reflect, rest and relax. Holidays are good for that. Lately my head has been busy, way too busy. I have been busy planning, arranging, rearranging and organising my life, family and the other things on my to do list. Today I needed a moment to stop, be quiet and well realign. Just breathe...in, out....just be still. As it turned out today was a perfect day to do just that. The rain settled in and so I curled up in bed to read. Rain trickled down the window, raindrops on the roof (you get the picture) So I begin reading (Lisa Bevere's latest book, 'Lioness Arising - Wake up and change your world.') Well, while the rain outside proved to be a quiet and reflective mood for reading, her book however really got me thinking. A powerful, vibrant and challenging message to arise and awaken. Not quite what I had in mind but really just what I needed.
Lately I have been challenged to not only step up but to also push through. To push through nagging doubts and prevailing fears of the unknown. While my faith continues to rise to the expectations set before me, I have had to decide to not live small or contained by these thoughts, fears or concerns. As I have prepared for my trip to Uganda I have been confronted by opportunities to keep me small.... in particular the World Cup bombings in Uganda a few months ago certainly gave me opportunity to question myself...."Am I still sure of the path that I have taken?".... "Does this turn of events weaken or strengthen my resolve to go?"... "Am I intimidated or afraid?" and if so "Can I push through that which would seek to keep me hemmed in?" Lisa's words challenged me to awaken to something fierce and uncontained. Wow. To rise with fearless strength and fierce serenity (if this is indeed possible). How does one be fierce and serene at the same time? yes it is possible....just think of the lion and the lamb. Definitely something to work on.
I particularly love how Lisa unpacks Psalm 139:14 - to be fearfully and wonderfully made (again another contradiction it would seem). How can you be both fearfully and wonderfully made? Something I was wondering the other day as I wrote this exact verse on our bathroom mirror to remind my daughter of her own value and worth. If my daughter had queried me about the 'being fearfully made' part then (which thankfully she didn't) I'm not sure I would have been able to give her a satisfactory answer....but today I got it.... my aha moment. Again it goes back to the fierce and serene thing. To be fully alive, awake, purposeful and intentional...strong, focused, alert and ready to take action, stand, fight and be reckoned with - a fierce, wild, determined and uncontained spirit. Awesome we were made for all of that! and wonderfully made to boot - stunning, beautiful, exquisite, refined, lovely and delightful. Breathtaking! "She knows her beauty is revealed in her strength. It is captured in what her body can actually do, not merely in how it looks. Her attractiveness is undeniable, because her power is unquestionable." (Lisa Bevere)
Some time ago Lisa posted this thought, "Well behaved women rarely make history". A suggestion that to change the world sometimes requires us to react and respond in ways that might push us out of our comfort zones.... to react to injustice and respond with loving action. To be a voice for those who have none. Of late the words from Brooke Fraser's song "Albertine" continually echos through my mind...."now that I have seen, I am responsible....faith without deeds is dead." A song that my daughter loves to sing so I get to hear it often. However it makes me stop and think....I cannot close my eyes nor turn my head. I have seen and heard, I have been awakened and am thus responsible to open my heart, extend my hand and lend my voice and as Lisa would say 'to respond fiercely with loving action, Fierce and serene.' May the spirit within me far exceed the might of any opposition I may encounter in this world. (1 John 4:4) I am certainly going to need it.
"May none of us be content with the safety of our children alone but instead grow in the understanding and awareness that all the children of this earth are our charge. Let none of us believe that our role is inconsequential." - Lisa Bevere
......Just a few more thoughts
Chapter 1 - Awaken a Lioness
" Nature is made to conspire with spirit to emancipate us" - Ralph Waldo. "Our earth echoes the revelations and wisdom of heaven. How amazing that our heavenly Father designed his creation to open our hearts". (Lisa Bevere) His amazing creation mirrors for us not only his beauty and power for us to revel in but also the beauty and power that can be found within us.
Chapter 2 - A force unseen
"If ever there comes a time when the women of the world come together purely and simply for the benefit of mankind, it will be a force such as the world has never seen." Together we can be a voice and be the change.
Chapter 3 - Dangerously awake
"Well behaved women rarely make history" - Laurel Thatcher Ulrich
Changing injustice requires us to become a voice... to make ourselves seen and heard.