Being Turned into Gentleness

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I’ve been reading Streams in the Desert for over 20 years and still, the readings are as fresh each time as if it was the first time. I’ve met others through the years that have attested to a similar experience.

Here’s the reading from today. I’m sure some will identify.

“So few are willing to undergo the suffering out of which thorough gentleness comes. We must die before we are turned into gentleness, and crucifixion involves suffering; it is a real breaking and crushing of self, which wrings the heart and conquers the mind.

There is a good deal of mere mental and logical sanctification nowadays, which is only a religious fiction…and such an one goes forth with a gay, flippant, theological prattle about the deep things of God.

But the natural heartstrings have not been snapped, and the Adamic flint has not been ground to powder, and the bosom has not throbbed with the lonely, surging sighs of Gethsemane; and not having the real death marks of Calvary, there cannot be that soft, sweet, gentle, floating, victorious, overflowing, triumphant life that flows like a spring morning from an empty tomb.”                       —G. D. W.

 

If you desire to deepen your spiritual and/or creative life, please feel free to schedule a 30 minute discovery coaching call by clicking here.

Blessings,

Monique

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WHAT IS THE SABOTEUR? (HINT: WE ALL HAVE ONE)

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Hi friend…

Do you ever have the experience where you’re about to do something you know you’re supposed to be doing and then you stop yourself? I don’t just mean doing the dishes or the laundry. I mean important stuff. Things your heart burns for. And yet, despite all the burning, there’s this voice inside you that takes a bucket of cold water and pours it all over you. And the next thing you know…

You’re doing something completely unrelated to whatever “it” is that you were meant to be doing.

I don’t know what it is for you. It could be a book you’ve been meaning to write. It could be that space you’ve been wanting to organize for yourself so that you’ll have a place to focus on your creative or spiritual life. It could be eating healthier so that you’re not sick and tired all the time. It could be a relationship you’ve been wanting to work on. It’s different for everyone.

But then some voice inside you says things like this:

“What’s the use? There’s no guarantee it’ll lead anywhere.”

“When I have more time.”

“So many other people are doing this. What makes me think I’ll ever get anywhere with it?”

“The last time I tried something like this, nothing came of it.”

“I’ll do it later.”

“I’m not good enough. / Nothing I do is good enough.”

“It needs to be perfect.”

Friend, that merry-go-round won’t stop on its own. You have to deal with it and stop it by force, even if it means bringing it to a screeching halt. Even if you have to dig your heels into the ground and feel like you’re being dragged a while before it stops. But stop it you must.

How do I know this? Because I have a tendency to ruminate, so if I’m not careful, I could spend hours ruminating and speculating and over-thinking. Granted, a big part of being a writer involves staring into space. But there’s a limit. I’ve had to learn to snap out of it. I do a lot of things to help with that—prayer, meditation, yoga, EFT, writing, watching and reading things that motivate and inspire me.

But in the end, the only way to cut it out is to…well, stop it. Get up and shake yourself out like a blanket that has crumbs on it. Because even crumbs can bury a person if there’s enough of them.

Remind yourself of the opportunities you have—very likely opportunities that a few years ago you only dreamed of. Or if not that, just reflect on what you’ve already done and how far you’ve already come. And if you’re having trouble remembering, call up someone who knows you well and ASK them. Ask them to remind you!

There are some friends who fit this quote so perfectly, they should have a t-shirt with it inscribed: “A friend knows the song in my heart and sings it back to me when my memory fails.” Or, in some cases, a coach.

Make sure you have at least one person in your life who can jolt your memory and remind you who you truly are and of all the good you have done. Because this will help you to courageously keep going on days when you feel like you’re not getting anywhere.

If you can’t reach a friend, consider sitting for 20 or 30 minutes and writing down all the good you have done and reminding yourself. I guarantee you, 20-30 minutes won’t be long enough.

I hope this encourages you and helps you feel less alone and more okay being human, knowing that there isn’t anyone on the planet who doesn’t struggle with self-doubt or The Saboteur.

Together, we can silence that debilitating voice and keep replacing it with the voice of grace and encouragement. The latter is the voice of truth.

If you need help battling the saboteur, you can click this link to go to my calendar and set up a free 30-minute introductory coaching call with me. 

https://www.timetrade.com/book/581CL

Stay courageous,

Monique

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BOUNDARIES FOR CHRISTIANS PODCAST

Hi friends…

When thinking about boundaries, it’s important to know the difference between people pleasing and God pleasing.

I hope this will help you.

If you have any questions or thoughts in response, feel free to comment and/or contact me.

If you would like to talk with me about having healthier boundaries in your life, you can schedule a call by clicking here and booking an appointment. I look forward to talking with you!

Blessings,

Monique

 

HOPE FOR ADDICTIVE PERSONALITIES

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The other night while doing some research, I came across a man I had never heard of named Rich Roll (http://www.richroll.com/bio/). I was fascinated by his story of personal transformation. He went from being an overweight alcoholic to being one of the fittest, healthiest men in the world—all due to a change not only in his way of eating, but his way of being in the world.

It’s likely we all have addictive personalities to some degree. It’s just that not every addiction is visible. Just because our addiction is obsessive worrying, or nagging, or pornography, or complaining, or approval, or being right, or being the smartest person in the room, doesn’t make it any less an addiction. The sad thing for many with obvious addictions is that their shame is usually laid bare, out in the open, for all to see. If someone has an addiction to food and is overweight, then every time they go to the snack machine in the office and come back to their desk with a candy bar, that voice of shame has to be silenced long enough to eat the candy. Thing is, someone else might have the same addiction but be fortunate enough to be born with high metabolism so no one ever knows. The drug addict passed out in the alley can’t hide their addiction either. In Rich’s case, the shame of his addiction was compounded by the fact that, for a long time, no one knew about it because he managed to maintain his job while trying to hide his alcoholism.

But many hide their allegedly lesser addictions by the simple fact that they’re not obvious. Other “lesser” addictions are accepted by society and because they’re so accepted, no one sees them as addictions and, worse yet, glorifies them. Addiction to success and money, to beauty, to security, to perfection, to feeling superior over others via religion, political views, or knowledge, to name a few. And as long as they remain hidden and unacknowledged, they are also damaging to us and to those around us.

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The other, more uplifting, conclusion that can be drawn from Rich Roll’s story is that addiction is actually misdirected passion. All the energy, time, and focus that once went into alcohol and escapism were redirected in this man’s life so that now he is living out the opposite of what he once was. He’s using all the same tools he already had. He’s just redirecting them into something that feeds his soul and his life rather than sucks life out.

Let this be encouragement to you that whatever your struggle—whether visible to others or invisible, whether hidden or revealed—if you take the same energy and focus it instead towards creating what you do want rather than avoiding what you don’t want, you will likely see miraculous results.

Think about a glass of water that has a bunch of dirt in it. If you were to try and pick every piece of dirt out grain by grain, you might quickly grow frustrated and give up. But if you simply put the glass under a faucet of water, the clean water will eventually flush out the dirt and you will have a clean glass of water.

You can start today. One action at a time in the direction of what you do want. You may not be transformed overnight. But you will certainly be one step closer. You get to take part in recreating the story you are living by telling yourself a different story. Instead of focusing on getting rid of the negative things you don’t like about your life or that you want to be rid of, if each day you add positive things, positive thoughts, positive behaviors, you will be planting seeds to a better, more purposeful, fulfilling life. And you, like Rich Roll, might go on to be a world influencer and someone that others look to for inspiration on overcoming seeming impossibilities.

If you’d like help getting started, let’s talk.

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