I’m heading out this morning to speak to a group of moms in town who are, no doubt, feeling like they need to see their sisters. In the middle of the onslaught of turmoil that’s surrounding us in our cities and online. We’re all having to press hard into deepest troves of maturity, wisdom and faith in order to stay connected to one another.
Of course it’s no surprise that the topic, that was chosen months ago, is about being “rooted together” in community.
I’ve had to dig deep into how we maintain and even grow our connections with others, especially when we disagree. One of the first places I go when I need insight on friendship is straight to the heart of my friend Shasta Nelson. Shasta has devoted much of her adult life to the betterment of adult friendships, women’s friendships in particular. Her writing is like a trove of treasured wisdom, understanding and practical guidance on how to navigate friendships.
In light of the fractured state of many of our relationships, she shared this on her Facebook wall:
“When we go to our health clubs and gyms we don’t get discouraged or give up when we sweat, when we get out of breath, or when our muscles shake, because we know that’s what it takes to get stronger. Likewise, I hold hope that just because we’re tired, hurt, and scared– we don’t back down from practicing being the people we want to become.
We know that our way through this is by being more empathetic, more validating of each other, more loving, and more forgiving. Yes, it’s hard. Yes, it’s not our default response yet. Yes, it’s easier to lash out, to blame, and to defend ourselves…. but, my friends, that’s kinda the point. Our only way to greater maturity is choosing to respond in ways that stretch our muscles and push us to our mats.
Endurance doesn’t just happen to us– we have to push ourselves further than we’ve ever gone before….” ~ Shasta
That’s it sister.
Maybe our relationships and our Facebook worlds have been on cruise control. Maybe this election cycle has knocked the breath out of us and it’s making our muscles shake. We are tired, hurt and scared. Those things are the sign to us that this is an invitation.
It’s an invitation to grow.
Of course it’s not easy. . . for any of us. But the temporary pain of growth is so far better than the long-lasting, hard-to-heal pain of anger and bitterness. If you think this is hard work, you ain’t seen nothing yet. Breaking the strongholds of bitterness is like wrestling the heavyweight champion.
Notice the sweat. Notice your muscles shaking. And choose the long game sister.
You’re worth it.
to more love,