“Daring Greatly.” That part sounded good. A trusted friend was recommending a book. Then he said its subtitle: “How the Courage to be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead.”
I groaned. All it took was the cover of the book to make me feel uncomfortable and say, “Why would anyone want to read that?” Which was, I was willing to admit, clear evidence that I probably SHOULD read the book.
Started last weekend. Dr. Brene Brown breaks down the mentality of “scarcity” that pervades all around– the message that we never have or are enough. People, she writes, tend to respond to the fear that they aren’t [doing, performing, succeeding, looking attractive, acting courageously, being smart, experiencing love from one another…] ENOUGH in three ways:
Ouch. This week, a couple from the US came to lead us in some times of teaching and seeking God. A theme that kept coming up in my soul, during these sessions, was my impatience. I want to accomplish much for English classes and refugee projects; learn Arabic; develop close, fun friendships with coworkers; have quality relationships with local ladies; and have amazing times with God. NOW.
When I don’t feel like I am _____ enough, I tend toward 1, 2, or 3. Or maybe a couple of those at once.
They were leading similar talks in a different city, and I joined them, lending some music to the sessions. (Sidebar: my experience in a much larger city in this region can be summed up in: hipster coffee shops, green grass, strange “zoo,” Chili’s, try-not-to-wince-because-we’re-this-close traffic… very different, but quite fun.) I brought my guitar. I listened to the talks again– many of them underlining the need for vulnerability among teams, colleagues, and families. And I kept reading pieces of Daring Greatly.
Acupuncture via concepts: scary, sharp-looking points, poking into the soft places of the soul. But surprisingly, relieving some of the tension that has been building, and bringing release (at least, I’ve been told that acupuncture does).
I found myself tripping into 1, 2, or 3 that week… stumbling, catching it… and choosing differently. Because I know something that shame, comparison, and disengagement can’t contain. And I am increasingly aware that 1, 2, and 3 do not belong as my responses, if I really believe this something.
After all the talks, we gathered at a large body of water, at the lowest place on earth. We went in, held up by the salt. Before entering, we smeared mud on every exposed portion of skin. People travel from around the world to experience a smelly, muddy, gritty cleansing ritual… We floated together, surprisingly buoyant, laughing at the mud on each others’ faces and limbs. Mud that cleanses. Salt that stings, but holds us up. A low place that gives a fresh perspective.
Dare greatly, and let this vulnerability drench your soul with the truth: that you are held by Someone who is enough.