Life / The Refined Collective

The Refined Collective // Risk

10.18.18

Photos c/o Lydia Hudgens // Outfit:  Sweater:  Vetta // Levi’s:  Encourage Vintage // Shoes:  Everlane

My bank account is low again. 

No time for play.

I gotta make sure I can pay rent next month.

_________________

The puffy bags under my eyes are so heavy my eyes burn.

But I keep pushing through.

Duty calls.

__________________

All I see in front of me is

obligation

bills

tasks

endless to-dos

Will it ever slow down?

I need it to slow down.

__________________

The old familiar train begins its descent onto my chest again.

At what point did this start to feel normal?

__________________

Do you know any of these feelings too?

__________________

I close my eyes and try to remember what it was like to live care free…

I have this memory from when I was eight.

I can close my eyes, and immediately I’m transported back to this slow, warm Sunday afternoon.

My mom was playing a tennis match, and I was running around on a jungle gym close by.  

I was the only kid on the playground for some reason. 

I was curiously climbing in and through and on top of things.

The only sounds I could hear were my own inhales and exhales, and the ping pong of tennis balls being smacked in the distance.

Then I heard an airplane overhead, and paused.  

I looked up to the cloudless blue sky.  The only thing up there was a plane with its billowing white tale behind it. (I thought—that must be how they make clouds).

So I laid down on my back like a starfish on the rubber tire ground, and watched the airplane make clouds in its dust—it seemed to stay in my line of site forever.

Long after it left, I laid on the ground staring at the clouds, listening for sounds, for what seemed like hours. 

Nothing out of the ordinary happened in that moment.  But merely remembering it feels like an exhale.

Something about it felt so still.

So quiet.

So peaceful…so safe.

We lived in this new neighborhood so there was a lot of construction going on around us.  

My brother and I would ride our bikes, and literally spend hours digging for gold—we watched too much Indiana Jones.

In the Bible, Jesus loves being around children.  Over and over again He talks about the idea of childlike faith—inviting the stoic and wise to be like little kids again.

As children we play, we imagine, we dream—anything is possible.

But then we grow up.

We have responsibilities. We’re trained to dim the light of imagination and creativity because it’s not efficient or a productive use of our time.

We replace the magic of a childlike faith—a belief in the unseen—with black and white logic and productivity.

Lately all I want is to recover a piece of that wonder.  That childlike awe and faith.  That belief in the unseen.  But the older I get the more faith seems like a greater and greater risk.  

My circumstances, bills, responsibilities, heartaches, struggles—those things are all real.  I can’t pretend they’re not.  But faith is choosing to see what’s in front of me, acknowledging it, then leaning into the unseen.

Faith is surrendering control and letting go even when it feels like everything is up to me.

 

Faith is seeing bleak circumstances and choosing to hope anyways.

Faith is seeing the endless to-do list, but trusting the world won’t end if I take a day, week, or month off.

Faith chooses risk.

the risk to…

hope

imagine

create

play

run

fall

skin your knees

love

be like a child

‘Some day you will be old enough to start reading fairy tales again,’ is how C.S. Lewis puts it.  

I want to lean into the unseen.

I want to trust God even though everything around me says to trust myself.

I want to imagine what it feels like to fly—the wind through my hair, pretend to be Cinderalla, and re-read the Chronicles of Narnia for the 20th time.

I want to pray into the wind and see the stories that unfold.

I want to be like a child again.

It feels like such a risk…yet here I am longing to take it.

Will you join me?

Kat

This post is in collaboration with The Refined Collective Series. Be sure and check out the other ladies in this wonderful group Jessi GreenJessica Hoffman, Kathyrn McCormick, Yvette Jain 

Podcast

025:Dancing with our Creator: Singleness and Faith with Arielle Estoria

10.18.18

 

“Words not for the ears, but for the soul.” This is Arielle Estoria’s mantra. She is a writer, speaker, and creative based in Los Angeles, CA. When Arielle was invited to speak in Nashville, TN, at Aboundco, she was given total freedom to write whatever she wanted. She graciously shares what she wrote with me and you! One line that stands out for me is “When is the last time you danced with your creator?” Tune in to the episode to hear her beautiful poem and our conversation about love, prayer, and singleness.

Faith and Love

  • We talk about what it means to navigate life as a single woman of faith today.
  • When you are longing for a relationship, it is easy to focus just on that and not focus on yourself in the present.
  • “I have been called to speak and to teach and to preach just as a man has been called to speak and to teach and to preach.”
  • One of Arielle’s very first events she read a poem at, she had a woman approach her and ask her “Do you ever wonder if God spent as much time with Eve as he spent with Adam?” This is a thought that revisits her constantly and we explore what comes up for her when she thinks about it.

“Before she even knew that there was a man anywhere near or for her, she only knew her creator.”

 

Seasons of Life

  • In any season of life, there are a lot of opportunities to learn about yourself. “There’s always those shadow spaces you probably ignore.”
  • As an enneagram type 4, she recognizes that her feelings dominate everything.
  • She has found that she has to sit and assess situations that she feels hurt by. “Not everything has to hurt your feelings.”
  • In her season of singleness, she has come to learn a lot, particularly the importance of calling out your desire.
  • Arielle wants a man with blue eyes who is kind to everyone around him. And guess what? She is allowed to desire both of those things.
  • God is always listening. “Even my smallest of desires and wants and needs, you take them and you consider the whole of them.”

Facing Expectations

  • Arielle notes that we can be so obsessed with something we’ve lost that we can’t see what is coming our way. God is always opening doors for us.
  • “It’s not going to look like how you think it’s going to look.” And that is always a good thing, even if we don’t know it in the moment.
  • “There are so many little things that we need to figure out for ourselves before we can ever be who we need to be with another person.”
  • The grass always seems greener, but we acknowledge the freedom of the season of singleness. It’s important to enjoy the season you’re in, no matter which season it is.

“The highs are going to be high and the lows are going to be low and we have to take in every part of each one of them.”

 

Want more of Arielle? You can check out her website, Instagram, and Twitter. She also has two books on Amazon right now called “Vagabonds & Zealots” and “Write Bloody, Spill Pretty.” I hope she inspired you as much as she inspired me. If you’re loving The Refined Collective Podcast, head over to the podcast app after you’re done listening and subscribe, rate, and review! Share your thoughts on this episode specifically. I want to know what parts of this episode resonated the most with you! I appreciate you all!

This episode is brought to you by the free PDF guide called “Moving Through Fear.” It is full of resources that I hope will help guide you through rejecting the lies in your life and finding the truth.

XOXO,

Kat Harris

Check out this episode!

Podcast

024: Freefall to Fly with Rebekah Lyons

10.11.18

Three years ago, a friend gave me a ticket to the She is Free conference. Rebekah Lyons, author of You Are Free and Freefall to Fly, was at the conference speaking about her experience with anxiety. I was sitting there, not comprehending what she went through and struggling to have empathy. Fast forward to a year later and I found myself struggling with debilitating anxiety. Ever since then, I’ve wanted to have a chat with Rebekah about anxiety and I’m so glad we were able to have this conversation and share it with you.

Struck with Pain

“I think God always makes our pain become purpose.”

  • She never set out to be a voice on anxiety, but that is where life led her.
  • She developed a panic disorder in 2010 after moving to Manhattan and remembered feeling alone in her experience.
  • “My surrender moment was my first panic attack.”
  • Her first panic attack was four months after moving to New York. It was sparked by a claustrophobia while her plane was landing in LaGuardia. This marked the beginning of a turbulent year of panic attacks.
  • Rebekah remembers praying for healing one night in bed with her husband and waking up the next morning, a bit timid, thinking, “Did it take?”
  • “When you’re sick, you only see inward, you see what is broken, you see what is lost. When a healing journey begins, you begin to look up and look out and notice everybody else.”
  • She remembers walking around that day looking outward.

Finding an Answer for the Fear

  • We are so gripped in fear, and we don’t always know why.
  • “It’s the first time I’ve known the rescue of God in the 30 years I’ve called myself a Christian.”
  • She began to research mental health in the church in search of the underlying root to her fears.
  • “We are supposed to shout peace from the rooftops.”
  • Rebekah recognizes that self-idolatry and false idolatry keep us from being stewards of God.
  • “Holy Spirit, would you please show me any counterfeit Gods in my life. Have I elevated my gift of writing over you, the giver of words?”
  • We have to put our trust back in God to find freedom and joy.
  • In this new season of life, Rebekah and her husband are welcoming joy in to their life and are adopting. Their baby girl Joy will be joining them in December.

In the Pursuit of Peace

“You cannot heal what is hidden.”

  • Rebekah advises those of you going through anxiety to get a journal and write down your thoughts every morning.
  • Start a conversation with God; there is no right way to do it. “Invite God into the stress.”
  • Reach out to friends to help you find the root of your anxiety, they can help identify the moments when you stop looking outward and retreat inward.
  • When you know what is causing those deep-down feelings of discomfort, lay it all down and prioritize it all below God.
  • We fall into traps of tying our identity to some thing instead of God. 

Rebekah is such a voice of healing and I adore her for it. Visit her website for free resources like tips for mental health and anxiety. Her book, You Are Free, is for sale wherever books are sold. Keep up with her work, life, and beautiful family on Instagram.

XO,

Kat Harris

Check out this episode!