Posted in Being Human, Inspiration, Lessons, Surrender

Holding the Tension

Sometimes in life’s journey, we cannot repair, fix, change the tension in our lives.  Sometimes we just need to sit and be with it.

A Season of Change

The past several months has been a whirlwind of experiences and emotions.  Unraveling from the end of a relationship.  Watching doors close in my professional life.  Hoping, dreaming, wishing and trying like heck to trust that the closing of both doors (professional and relational) meant that God was getting ready to open another….or several more doors.  As I have been moving past the closed doors, new ones seemed to have been opening a crack.  With the glimpse of this light, I felt elation, inspiration, hope and I was buoyed forward.  It has felt somewhat like a rollercoaster of despair and hope, death and resurrection, fear and belief.  As I have glimpsed the light through the door, many seeds have been planted……about a million pound bag worth of seeds in fact.  Planting, planting, planting.  Two new books (not to mention the promotion of the two already published).  Authentic Freedom Teacher TrainingTaking my show on the road.  A weekly meditation newsletter, scheduling and promoting fall classes.  Whew.  The planting, for the most part, is finished.  There is a little watering left to do….but for the most part… all I can do is WAIT for the seeds to sprout and grow.  And if you know anything about me……WAIT is perhaps my least favorite word.  I can often be a little like Veruca Salt, “But daddy, I want it and I want it now!!!!!”

When Veruca Meets Waiting

So, last week, my inner Veruca lost it.  After taking a look at my appointment calendar (or should I say, “lack thereof”?) and my bank balance and Veruca FREAKED OUT!  Instead of doing what I teach others to do….pray, trust, be patient (yeah, right!)…..actually, what I should say is that after I did all of the above (prayed, trusted, practiced patience) and found that they didn’t help a bit….then I freaked out.  I started pacing the house.  I spent way too much time on the internet….mostly wasting time on Facebook.  I paced some more.  I lost my patience with my kids.  I had no focus.  No direction.  No grounding.  Then I applied for a job at the local health food store.  Unfortunately (or should I say fortunately), their needs did not meet the hours that I could somehow squeeze in between writing, teaching, counseling, parenting, etc.  So I went home and threw my hands up in frustration…..Ok God, now what?!

Calling in the Cavalry!

The hardest thing in the world for me to do is to ask for help.  I am the typical over-responsible firstborn who somehow believes that work = value and that if you work harder, you will magically get what you want.  I am also fiercely independent having learned that if you want something done, you’d better do it yourself.  And….there must be something wrong with you if you can’t do it yourself and need help.  Fortunately, life has kicked me enough that I have learned the value of being humble and asking for help when you need it.  When Veruca decided to have her temper tantrum, I knew I needed to call in reinforcements.  So…..I penned a note to my self-appointed Board of Directors and this was their wise and loving response:

Hold the Tension!

Damn it!  Hold the Tension?  On every level, I knew the truth in this wisdom.  I have done the work.  I prayed for direction.  I followed the strings and strands.  I planted, tended and watered the seeds.  Now, all I can do is WAIT!  And as my inner Veruca is sitting on the floor kicking and screaming, I know that I need to simply SIT with this tension.  Sit.  Be.  Breathe.  And Breathe some more.  And this action of “holding the tension” feels so foreign….so counter-intuitive.  My instinctual response to this tension is to make it go away….fix it…..eradicate it…..expunge it…..purge it….be free of it.  Instead, I am being invited to ACCEPT it……BE WITH it…..maybe even LOVE it.  YIKES.  So once again…..I find myself “the teacher” as “the student.”  And I am grateful for my spiritual brothers and sisters who are not afraid to hit me on the nose with a newspaper when I’m tearing apart the couch that is simply sitting there but must somehow be the source of my anxiousness.  Thank you sirs, may I have another?

Where in your own life are you feeling a little like Veruca Salt?  “I want it and I want it now!”

Where are you being invited to “Hold the Tension?”

Who is your Cavalry?

Lauri Lumby

Authentic Freedom Ministries


I am a trained, professional Spiritual Director, Author and Hands-on Healer. I offer services, programs and classes that empower you to hear the voice of the Divine that speaks from within you. It is the voice of the Divine that leads us to our highest truth, to the discovery and cultivation of our gifts and to a life of Authentic Freedom where we know contentment, compassion and joy. Your truth will set you free!

3 thoughts on “Holding the Tension

  1. I can hold tension anywhere from one minute to an hour. I have a freak out too and then come back to holding the tension. It’s nice to know I’m not alone! I wonder if my freak out convinces the Universe of my lack of faith in being taken care of. I choose to return to the attempt at faith. I act as well. I apply for jobs (my freak outs are finance related mostly), I write, I play with my horses… And find balance more in the writing and horses. I had to look up who Veruca is and found myself nodding my head in recognition. I do that, but usually true to my introvert-ness, I do it in silence.

  2. I enjoyed this tremendously as I could easily have written the exact post myself! Nice to feel I’m not the only one in this position. thanks!!

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