Despite the cold, windy, below zero degree weather, eight brave friends came out to join our very first Sabătica Supper – for me, it was a night to remember! We cooked together, laughed, sang and got acquainted with one another. Old friends got to catch up and new friends were made. As the hostess of Supper No. 1, I felt an overwhelming sense of joy as I looked around and observed how engaged, unreserved and happy everyone was. In that singular gathering, many nations were represented namely the United States, Haiti, Peru, Mexico, Venezuela and Italy; thus bringing to life a long-time dream of opening my home and table to the world. Above all, as I watched everyone kick off their shoes and put their worries aside for those few hours; as I subsequently hear comments about the Supper bringing relief to someone’s depression and a well needed break to an exhausted mom, I am overtaken by a deep sense of gratitude to have had the opportunity to witness, on day one, Sabătica’s mandate to facilitate immediate respite and to encourage a life of joy, lived in the now. [SS No.1 – 02.13.16]
The month of January is quite a big deal. It is the start of a new year – a symbol of new beginnings, second chances and new opportunities. It offers thirty-one days of energized hope, new resolutions and new determinations.
Many a project is dreamed up and even launched in January. Yet sadly, despite the good intentions and the deep-rooted desires to see them to term, many of those plans dissipate and fail to even make it to March.
As I am no stranger to that predicament, instead of writing yet another list of goals for this year, I turned the focus on me, trying to understand why year after year some of my decrees are left unrealized despite the legitimacy of my desires and calculated efforts. Ultimately, I came to understand that a lot of it had to do with my own blindness or unwillingness to see and accept certain things for what they were; to call the underlying causes by their names.
“Self-acceptance always precedes genuine self-surrender and self-transformation.”
― David G. Benner,
We often quote, “you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free”. The truth will indeed bring freedom; however, as I have been reminded, that process of liberation requires that we awaken from our denial and allow the truth to penetrate those resistant places in our lives. We must process the truth, purpose to remain awakened to it and to deal with it — no matter how painful or risky that may seem.
“Why are you still so entwined in your little girl fears? Why do you continue to allow people to treat your soul unkindly? Why are you still so angry? Why are you hiding in the back of the room when you should be out there living out your purpose, experiencing life, giving life?”
Those were some of the questions that arose in me which I had to grapple with and prayerfully work on. As you continue on with this new year, if you haven’t already done so, sit with yourself for a while, try to formulate and answer the questions that are pertinent to your own life and situations. Don’t move forward until you determine what’s keeping you from advancing, from grabbing hold of the inner healing and joy that are inherently your birthright.
Then he came there to a cave and lodged there; and behold, the word of the LORD came to him, and He said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” — 1 Kings 19:9 (NASB)
There is no quick fix; it is not a one-day process. Sit for a while, be honest with yourself; be patient and prayerful. Ask God to reveal those areas that may be hidden to you. Be attentive to what you are experiencing [feelings, thoughts, reaction] and be brave to face and embrace the truth. Above all, with the confidence that Abba has you in the palm of His hands, seek to make peace with your findings and resolve to live beyond your annual resolutions or anyone’s expectations; purpose to live awakened to His truth, in complete freedom and in total glory of who you were created to be.