Hush, fear of failure, hush.

Hush, fear of failure, hush.

My friend invited me to go on a hike on New Year’s Day.

I informed her I was not in shape for a hike that she would take and she informed me that she was going for a run on her own prior to the hike.

In other words, the hike was her cool down – I should be good.

I was still worried that my heart was going to beat out of my chest at the peak of the hike.

I just didn’t think I was going to be able to hang.

I didn’t want it to look like I couldn’t handle it…

I didn’t want to have to stop for a break.

I was afraid that I would be sore the next day.

It was also going to be a cold morning.

But I went.

And you know what? The challenge was good for me.

I am stronger than I thought.

I huffed and puffed a few times but it felt good.

I am capable of hard things.

It’s my mind that limits what’s possible.

It’s my fear of failure that says no.

It’s me that can talk me out of anything.

And the 3.2 mile hike on uneven ground at funky angles gave me a thirst for more challenge.

Who is this girl?

It was a great way to start the new year.

I want to pursue things that make me wonder, “Am I am up for this?”

I want to welcome opportunities that include a risk of failure.

“Where is Bethany and what have you done with her?”

I know that what I attempt will not be within my own power.

I can do hard things.

Please remind me of this in a few months…

No, really I mean it.

#PermissionGranted

Moments with and

Moments with and

The end of a full day

leaves her with a 

slight headache, 

achy body, 

full heart,

a few regrets, and

a few wins —

and there’s still more to do.

It’s one of those nights, 

when she doesn’t know 

whether to keep 

pushing through

or 

call it enough. 

A bath sounds great

and so does 

finishing up

one 

last

thing…

so that tomorrow 

won’t be as full,

so that, maybe, 

she won’t go to bed with a

the regret/headache combo.

In her fuzzy mind

an idea plows through

the fog.

Why not do both?

A bath and take the computer with her?

Cake and eat it, too!?

Is it necessary to choose, tonight?

Is tonight the night for

and

instead of 

or?

The lavender scent,

the warm water, 

and her work, 

draw her to the tub.

And then a wave of thought

crashes against her mind…

are there other moments

in her life that are

and instead of or?

Has she put limits 

where limits don’t exist?

Work or family.

What if it is 

work and family?

Giving or receiving.

What if it is

giving and receiving?

Strong or teachable –

what if the right answer

is strong and teachable?

Grace or accountability.

What if the proper way of this

being lived out is

grace and accountability?

Maybe there’s been too many

either-this-or-that in her life. 

Maybe it’s time for more and.

#PermissionGranted

 

 

 

She doesn’t mind

She doesn’t mind

She prays, she studies, she writes.

She steps into what she is made for.

She leads others to pursue

the heart of God.

There may be some who

think she should not speak,

that she should go home,

but she doesn’t mind.

Let them talk.

She doesn’t answer to them.

She advocates, she speaks, she stands.

She steps into who she

is made to be.

She realizes her worth

and desires to educate others

about a system that still exists

to squelch her people.

There are some who

believe she is making

something out of nothing,

but she doesn’t mind.

Let them talk.

She doesn’t answer to them.

She teaches, she heals, she cares.

She pursues her passion

to help others who are sick.

She is wife, mom, and

a leader in her field.

There are some who

believe she should be home,

that she is in the wrong,

working outside her home,

but she doesn’t mind.

Let them talk.

She doesn’t answer to them.

She creates, she writes, she spits truth.

She rhymes sick lines

that seep from her heart

onto the page.

She speaks her mind and

she will not be contained.

There are some who believe

that her truth is too loud,

that she should go home,

but she doesn’t mind.

Let them talk.

She doesn’t answer to them.

Say what you want,

believe what you want,

truth will prevail and

your words

meant to hinder,

meant to restrain,

meant to demean

will be what we

step on as we pursue

who God made us to be.

We don’t mind.

We don’t answer to you.

We don’t mind –

but we do wish you would

consider what we could

accomplish if we

worked together.

#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

Don’t forget to breathe

Don’t forget to breathe

When it seems like 

joy is hiding,

When it seems

laughter is 

A risk you can’t afford.

When you question

whether you can 

smile without lying,

don’t forget to breathe. 

In

And 

Out. 

Just be.

It is okay to be angry. 

In fact, you should

be mad.

Just don’t sit in it,

instead, let it fuel you.

It’s not wrong to be frustrated,

just don’t let it lead to bitter.

Don’t feel like you need to 

pretend you are ‘just fine’.

Our world is far from

‘just fine’.

So probably,

no one can claim that.

And if you can, 

well… that’s another post entirely. 

Let’s not pretend that 

we are okay 

and good with things

as they are. 

Let’s strive for more.

Let’s demand better.

Let’s pursue 

thriving for all.

When it seems like 

joy is hiding,

When it seems

laughter is 

A risk you can’t afford.

When you question

whether you can 

smile without lying,

don’t forget to breathe. 

In

And 

Out. 

I’m here. 

Beside you. 

Breathing. 

In 

And 

Out.

Take my hand.

Let’s get to work.

#PermissionGranted

 

Stuck on a tightrope

Stuck on a tightrope

I’ve stranded myself

in the middle of a tightrope.

Maybe that is where 

you are now…

worn out from 

maintaining the status quo,

but you are frozen in place.

Every muscle works 

at maximum capacity

to keep you

safe, steady, and stuck.

I’ve been there –

working hard

and doing what 

should be done,

but not budging an inch.

Working hard to 

keep balance

even though I can 

see what I want is 

on the other side 

of the chasm. 

There’s a lot of questions

between here and there. 

A whole lot of strenuous,

tedious, teetering steps

to be taken. 

The choice is:

stay or move forward. 

Is it more scary to stay

in a precarious place

and work so hard

to not move at all?

Or is it scarier  

to never know what 

it is like to cross

the chasm to 

dance and

take up your space 

where you belong?

Proceed with fear. 

It is time.

One step, 

then two. 

No more stuck

on a tightrope.

#PermissionGranted

 

 

What will be your one step for today?