You’re never far

You’re never far

We might be five miles apart, 

next door, or 2500 miles away

from each other. 

But you’re never far. 

Distance can’t change 

what the heart holds. 

Distance can’t dilute 

our determination 

to care for one 

another well. 

We will find a way.

Distance cannot

weaken love.

It just doesn’t 

have that kind of power.

Distance only makes

us ache to be more present.

This can fuel how

we show up in 

our own homes 

and in our communities.

Don’t hide 

from what you feel –

dig deep, process your

thoughts to be able

to love and serve

those close and those

far away.

Otherwise, I am afraid

we risk not 

showing up at all and

we just can’t

afford that. 

#PermissionGranted

Not alone

Not alone

You’re not alone.

You’re not alone.

And if you are

convinced you are –

I’m there, too.

I may feel

raw,

unseen,

and

unsteady.

But friend,

I am not

alone.

You are weak from

bracing

against the

assault of the

relentless wind

but I need you to

shift your gaze.

Look up.

Look up.

I’m here.

I see you.

I see your heart

and you see mine.

No words required.

We

lock

arms.

We may be tired,

beaten down,

but we are

determined to

weather the storm.

You hold me up.

And then it’s my turn

to orient you.

You are never alone.

I’m right here.

#PermissionGranted

In the wrong

In the wrong

The greatest gift we can

give someone is

inviting them to be

fully themselves with us

and then cheering them on

as they pursue all

they are meant for.

We don’t all receive this gift. 

And this is why:

We withhold

permission from 

others to step 

into all that they are

made for

because it will 

personally cost us something. 

It sure doesn’t feel great

when this happens to me.

I feel defeated

and it is that much 

harder for me to 

take up my space.

I don’t appreciate when someone

denies what I see in me,

or tries to keep me small. 

And yet I put others through it –

the cost is too great, 

and we make excuses. 

And what happens then?

We are all miserable. 

All of us living out lies, 

all of us in the wrong.

We are either wrong for 

witholding permission 

or we are wrong for 

waiting for it. 

#PermissionGranted

Upon closer inspection

Upon closer inspection

If you look at my calendar

you would think it is a mess.

The same could be said for my car,

the basement, my desktop, and the laundry room.

My hope is that upon closer inspection,

you might be able to look past

the insanity, the yogurt splashes,

the boxes, the piles of shoes –

and see who I am.

The messes are messes, yes,

but there’s likely a reason they are there

and they don’t define who I am.

This is also true for my personality flaws –

and yours –

they are there for a reason,

but they don’t define

who we are.

I invite you to look past my flaws –

just as you would want me to

look past yours.

I also wish for you to help

me with my messes –

just because stubbornness

and a yogurt-splashed car

are a part of my life

doesn’t mean

I can’t make changes.

We are not forced to

stay in a mold

we can change,

morph,

grow

into people who pursue their best –

not just for their own sakes

but for the world around us.

Let’s give each other permission –

to be who we are,

right where we are…

but let’s also give permission

for others to speak

into the spaces where we

need to grow.

#PermissionGranted

 

 

 

The song of humanity.

The song of humanity.

The trees, the dolphins, and

the mountains call to me

and demand to be seen.

I can’t look away.

The bird’s song,

the breeze, tickling the trees,

the way a flower grows

from a teeny seed.

I can’t look away.

I see their creator in them.

His design, his joy,

his creativity is in the magenta flower,

the succulents, the manatee,

the neon tree frog, and the terrapins.

They sing a song over me and

I am compelled to sing with them.

I want to join the chorus.

What are the notes?

I don’t know their song.

What are the words?

How do I join them?

Humanity has a song, too.

I can hear it

when I listen.

The song is constant –

everyone taking a breath

at a different time.

Some scream to be heard.

Some sing into a void

where no one listens.

Some are making their

own stages.

It’s hard to listen to the song because there’s

so much to grieve,

so much hurt

and righteous anger

in the song.

So much so that sometimes I try to silence it.

Headphones on.

Head down.

Just make sure

all is well in my house –

that everyone under my roof

can sing.

But.

My song is the song of humanity.

My voice is meant to be

heard and it is meant to

amplify the song that

others are singing.

I can’t not listen to their song

and there’s no other song

for me to join in on.

I can’t look away.

They demand to be seen.

I can’t look away.

I see their creator in them.

His design, his joy,

his creativity is all

over us all.

My voice must add to

their song of long-awaited,

the-time-is-now

justice.

Otherwise,

I

am

just

noise .

#PermissionGranted

 

 

Be the right person

Be the right person

I was recently the recipient 

of community in action. 

I had questions about

trying something new 

and after a few phone calls,

too many not-quite-right

Youtube videos and 

articles I found 

the right person.

She patiently listened to my questions,

filled in my gaps, 

and then went the extra mile

to help me get over the 

obstacle that was before me. 

I had never met this person

before but that didn’t matter

to her because she is 

committed to community. 

How do I know this?

Well, it turns out she was

the owner of the establishment

and their website says 

they are ‘committed to 

community before anything else’. 

She helped me before 

she knew I had a different

skin color than she did, 

she didn’t ask my

religious affiliation,

and she didn’t ask my 

stances on political issues –

she just knew she had

the answer –

she knew she was the 

right person to help me. 

This was not a life-changing 

moment for me – 

meaning her assistance

was not helping me get access 

to safety or food,

but it did help me 

make progress on 

a goal that I was thinking

I was going to have to

let go of.

Pursuing community –

just for the sake of community 

can have a huge impact

in someone’s life.

It’s likely happened for

you in either big or small ways…

the right person 

stepped up for you.

Being the right person

and showing up  

can save lives

and it allows us to be

agents of God’s kingdom.

Being the right person

doesn’t necessarily mean 

you possess all the right answers,

have the most money, 

or are the most eloquent.

It simply means you see a need

and you meet it. 

#PermissionGranted