Posted in Discernment, Divine Revelation, Empowerment, Initiation, Inspiration, Midlife Journey, Spiritual Formation

Heeding Soul’s Calling

Today’s blog continues the exploration into the question of personal, spiritual, soul, calling.  Who and How are we uniquely called to be? 

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The Soul’s Calling

For each and every one of us, there is a unique call that when heeded,  leads us to a place of inner fulfillment, contentment and joy.  This unique spiritual call is the magnificent way in which we are called in service to ourselves and in service to the world and is accomplished through our own unique vision, gifts and passions.  In heeding this call, we are birthing our soul, our truest self, our most magnificent self, the person God made us to be.  Attending to the soul’s calling is the most important work we can do in the world – because in birthing our souls, we are providing a model for others to follow when soul calls to them.

Recognizing Soul

The soul is a mysterious spiritual thing.  It whispers to us in our dreams, through our imagination, in the tiny whispering voice of intuition and in various physical sensations.  Soul can also show up as restlessness, rage, hatred, anxiety, tension, worry, depression and despair  – especially when it is being ignored or not getting the attention it knows it deserves.  And soul is messy.  Soul does not show up in a tidy little package that fits into the tightly woven box of societal constructs or expectations – in fact, soul is everything BUT compliant.  Soul breaks down barriers, boundaries, traditions and rules and will not fit into anyone’s box, least of all our own.  And soul is surprising.  Soul shows up when we least expect it and in the most unexpected way.  But….one thing we can be sure about soul is that it reflects our gifts, our passions, our hopes and dreams and it holds within it all the ways in which we are able to be in service to love and in service to the world.  Soul holds it all and is limitless in what it is able to hold. And soul is big –  as in big, wide, general terms such as healer, teacher, provider, helper, lover, muse, comforter, guide, counselor, etc.  But by definition, soul cannot be defined, instead, it defines itself in its revealing.  Soul grows as we engage in it and teaches us who and how it wants to be.  In recognizing soul, we are the student, the soul is our teacher.

Surprising but not so surprising revelations

As I mentioned in last week’s blog, I have been journeying with and through Bill Plotkin’s book, Soulcraft.  As I have been reading this book, I have been amazed at how my own spiritual journey began to take on a new life and a new direction.  It was as if in reading his book, my own Soul was seeking to be born.  And last week, through a series of meditations, dreams, “coincidences,” writing exercises, visualizations, my SOUL made itself known.  How do I know this?  Because her appearance was surprising, but not surprising at all because she has shown up in this way time and time and time again and I have followed trail upon trail upon trail in her pursuit.  While I’m a little hesitant in sharing my soul, I am heeding Bill’s directive that when the time is right, it is important to share our SOUL in the world so that it can take its rightful place and begin to do its work.  So….without further ado….

Heeding the call to be PRIEST

Yep, I said it.  PRIEST.  I know, I know, I know…..I’ve been down this path before, but Soul assured me that while all the other explorations of this path proved to be fruitless…..this one is right.  BECAUSE…….it is a priesthood of my own making……free from the confines of denomination or even belief.  Free from the rules of institution.  A priesthood that is authentic to who I am, what my gifts are and how God continues to call me in service to the world.  A priesthood that encompasses all that I do, all that I am and touches every single part of my everyday life and personal encounters.  Exploring Priest from this perspective took me back to my ministry training which outlined the responsibilities of a priest: (to which I would add PRAY):

Teach

Preach

Heal

And, these are the things I am already doing and will continue to do in the world through not only my professional ministry, but in simply being and walking in the world.  So, yes, I accept the call to be priest – and will allow it to reveal itself to me in the way that it wants to be known uniquely through me.  🙂

How is your SOUL calling to be born in the world?

(Here’s one of the coincidences that occurred this past week as my daughter and I were having a little fun with her choir robes….and my goofy son trying to get in on the fun)  🙂

LauriPriest2

Posted in Being Human, creativity, Initiation, Inspiration

Where do I fit in?

Today’s blog explores the universal human search for connection.  Who am I in relation to the people around me?  Who or where is my tribe?  Who are the people who will love and accept me for who I am and honor my gifts?

Fountain Pen and Pound Sign

Desperation

Over the past two weeks, I found myself overcome with an inner tension, restlessness and frustration.  In this state of tension, I began indulging behaviors that I had hoped would ease the tension, instead, they only made matters worse.  As my tension escalated and began approaching critical mass, I sent a desperate text to a friend, “I’m just trying to find out where I fit!”  And then it hit me…….the cause of my tension was the unresolved life-long search for where I fit in – a search that is not mine alone, but belongs to every one of us who long to be known for who we truly are and unconditionally loved for it.

The Universal Search

As a species, we are pack animals.  Like wolves, we function better when we live in collaboration and cooperation.  Beyond simple survival, within a loving, supportive, collaborative community, we thrive.  We feel the nurturing and support that we need to connect with our gifts, cultivate them and find fulfillment in the vocation of sharing these gifts in service to the community.  For some, this sense of healthy and supportive connection comes through family, church, school, work, clubs, etc.

Tension within the tribe

Many find that as they grow and mature in their awareness of their truest selves and how they are called to be that in the world, this drive creates conflict within the tribe.  Every community has rules, and sometimes the truths we come to know about ourselves no longer fit the rules of the community.  Then we are faced with a decision, honor our truth and break from the tribe, find a way to make our truth fit the rules of the tribe or forsake our truth all together.  None of these decisions are right or wrong and all will result in some kind of pain, but sometimes the force of our truth is so great that we have no choice but to make the most difficult decision which is to break with the tribe.

Breaking with Tribe

When the force of our truth is so great and we find that in order to really be the person God created us to be, we sometimes have to leave the comfort of the community where we at one time seemed to fit in.  This is often an excruciatingly painful break, leaving us feeling as if one of our vital organs (usually the heart) has been removed.  We feel empty, lost, like a boat adrift without rudder, oar or sail.  It is a treacherous time of emptiness and loss.  Moving through this departure, we have to grieve….and we have to experience all the stages of that grief – anger, depression, sadness, bargaining and denial.  And depending on the depth of connection previously felt in the tribe, this grieving can take years, or even a lifetime.

The Pilgrimage to ourselves

Separating from the tribe for the sake of our truth, however, is sometimes the only way we can be truly free to respond to God’s call for us in our lives and to freely and openly share the gifts God has given us.  When we have the courage to leave the tribe behind, we begin the God-driven path of pilgrimage.  Pilgrimage is a journey through the wilderness to a far and distant land. The goal of a pilgrimage is two-fold:  finding God and finding Self.  On a pilgrimage, we leave everything behind except that which we need for survival….or better yet, we leave everything behind and trust in the generosity of strangers for getting our needs met.  Sometimes on a pilgrimage we have a map, a pathway to follow, but even with a map, we have no idea where we are going, how we are going to get there or how long it will take.  While on the pilgrimage, we are confronted with all of our fears, unhealed wounds, unfulfilled longings, unmet needs, hidden attachments.  The purpose of this “life review” is so that we can acknowledge them (name the demon) and give them release.  Once freed of all the inner obstacles to knowing God and knowing Self, the quiet voice of our deepest truth begins to speak.  The guiding hand of the Divine gently directs us along the course and we are eventually brought to our destination.

How do we know we’re there?

The trick about the destination, however, is that it is continually revealing itself and there is no finish line or banner that says, “YOU’RE HERE!”  The destination shows up in quiet, subtle glimpses of a felt sense of contentment, fulfillment, peace – a feeling of being home.  For me, it showed up at the close of the week as I set down my sword and picked up my pen.  Instead of fighting my old fights or beating my head against the wall trying to fit in, I wrote to my pain.  I wrote to my loneliness.  I wrote to my search for tribe.  I picked up manuscript and completed the final edits.  I explored resources for writers.  I posted a new page on my website offering mentoring support for other writers.  And then…..I went to dinner with a friend and took in an evening of live music where I got to see dear friends, other artistically minded souls, indulging their highest gifts.  And as I listened to the rhythmic beat of the bodhran, I knew that I was home.

copyright 2013  Lauri Lumby

Posted in Authentic Freedom, Inspiration

Knowing Ourselves

Last Thursday I had the amazing opportunity to attend a day of reflection with poet David Whyte.  In the spirit of that day, I have dusted off an old poem that I wrote about our journey to discover ourselves.  As you read this poem, reflect on who you know yourself to be and how you have discovered this. 

The Woman I Know Myself to Be

The Woman I know myself to be,

Created by God, in persons three.

Holy Spirit, feminine Divine

Creator God, your breath is mine.

Christos, human actualized,

the journey, fully realized.

 

Within my heart, the truth be told,

denying  lies that I have been sold:

“Unworthy of another’s love,

in sin created, not of God above.

It is never enough, whatever you do,

and how could anyone really love you?

If they knew the truth of the woman you be,

then surely they would turn and flee!

Not perfect, no matter how hard you try!”

Encased in my body, living the lie.

 

But through the years and through the tears,

I have sorted out these fears,

and deep within the muck and grime,

I have discovered the truth sublime.

Beauty is my name you see.

Joy the dance inside of me.

Created in and of God’s love,

God within, not from above.

Never separate, always one,

To this truth, I have come.

 

The Woman I know myself to be,

is made of love, not sin you see.

Beautiful, wise, intelligent, kind;

a loving mother, you’ll surely find.

Compassionate, tender, silly and fun,

Passionate, sexy, smile bright as the sun.

Strong, yet vulnerable, healthy in mind,

admitting to weakness, accepted as fine.

The wounded healer I know me to be,

living life’s lessons, the truth set me free.

I am singer, dancer, writer and friend,

student, creator, to thee prayers I send.

Love and joy, the breath that made me,

know that this is too what made thee.

 

Created in the image of God,

belief in less –  illusion and fraud.

Divine is what we truly be,

if we but live authentically.

Seeking God above all else,

toasting to the growing wealth

of abundant promises discovered true –

All of this is made for you!

Realizing faith defined,

owning the truth in body and mind:

One not two or three or four,

love alone unlocks the door.

Believing the promise of Creator Divine:

“I love you and you are mine.”

Lauri Lumby

http://yourspiritualtruth.com