Has anyone reached out to you? Or when you have reached out, who has responded? Who has hugged you? Listened? Invited you somewhere? Given wise counsel? Showed up? Loved you with no strings attached? This is God. He is here.
Jesus spent His life on the bottom rung of the ladder. He surrounded himself with the powerless, the outcasts, the bottom dwellers, the marginalized. By his own choosing, He never made it up past that bottom rung. But I was born on the top rung; I was born into a life so far from Jesus. White. American. Middle class. Educated. Excess everything. It is a life so many long for, but it is a life that has proven to be my greatest hindrance in knowing the true Jesus.
I deeply miss the diverse relationships I had in high school; I miss recognizing and celebrating diverse friendships, having the weeds of prejudice pulled from my white privilege perspective, and raising my children with a colorful and beautiful view of the world.
I inhaled camaraderie, and exhaled competition.Walking into a room of 800 women who write, speak, and teach, I had a choice. These are unquestionably my people. But insecurity, lies, and fear are sneaky fellows who travel together, sidelining talents, treasures and time. I could sink into insecurity, or rise up through encouragement.
Saying no encourages me to re-frame my focus and prioritize the people, relationships, experiences that truly matter. Saying no allows me to rest and recharge and be refreshed. Saying no enables me to truly value and appreciate those experiences I do end up saying yes to.