Podcast

049: How to Find Beauty in the Midst of Pain

05.16.19

We all want the same thing:  to feel loved, known, seen, accepted.  Even so, we’ve somehow become the greatest of pretenders believing we’re only worthy of those things if we’re PERFECT, have it altogether, fit within the mold.

We walk around with this “I’M FINE,” mentality.  Everybody is ‘fine’ with their shiny masks covering their pain.

When did we become so good at hiding?

When did we become so good at pretending?

Why do we think we’re only worthy of love when and if we’re perfect?

Why do we hide our pain and brokenness when it’s one of the most common of human experiences?

We build walls to protect ourselves only to end up in more pain than before as the isolation traps the broken pieces of our lives.

And it’s exhausting.

There’s something endearing being around small children—they don’t know they’re supposed to hide their pain…they cry—they want you to kiss it better—and then they run off and play again.

But at some point we learn to hide…and we become really good at it.

We get kicked and shoved around by life—we get the snot kicked out of us a few times…

so we build walls to protect ourselves. 

We hide our pain—because pain means weakness—we don’t know who is safe + who isn’t to truly let our guards down with

EVERYONE IS WALKING AROUND LIKE THEY’RE FINE + on the inside:  crippled with fear, battling depression, eating disorders, pornography addictions, self-hatred, 

And it’s exhausting

and lonely…

What if we chose to remove the masks and invite others into our pain?

There’s something distinct that happens to us and in us when we experience heartache.  When life hits us like a ton of bricks and everything falls to pieces.

Somehow it’s in those grey areas of our lives that we find unexpected beauty, comfort, rest–it’s counter intuitive and it doesn’t make sense.

What if the existence of brokenness meant that our story isn’t over yet?

What if we believed pain doesn’t have the last word?

What if we removed our masks and invited love, hope, community into those painful areas of our lives?

I think we’d be shocked at the redemption we’d discovered.

Because something transformative happens in the breaking, and it’s in the rebuilding that we experience inexplicable beauty.

With you on the journey,

Kat Harris

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Podcast

048: How to Praise Before Our Breakthrough

05.09.19

Is your dream too big for you?

It better be, because that will force you to pray circles around it.  If you keep circling it in prayer, God will get bigger and bigger until you see your impossible prayer for what is really is: an easy answer for an almighty God.

-Mark Batterson

Last week in worship, I just sat down and started thanking God like I had never done so before for all the impossible things in my life. I praised Him like the breakthroughs had already come. I thanked God for my husband, our Godly marriage, my financial breakthrough, and restoration in my family.

If there was any person that needed a miracle; it was this woman…

Hannah in Samuel 1 was a woman who married to a man named Elkanah. At this time, a woman’s purpose was marriage and motherhood, particularly motherhood to boys. She felt such shame for not being successful in having kids. She was so depressed she would not eat. Elkanah was determined to fix her and reminded her that his love can be enough.

When Hannah went to the temple for the annual sacrifice, she was distressed and wept with her face on the floor. She was crying out for her breakthrough. The priest, Eli, comes to her and says she is crazy and drunk. She stands up for herself, stands up for her faith, and stands up for her breakthrough.

God softens Eli’s heart and he blesses peace over her. Her prayer isn’t answered, but her depression lifts in these moments. God answered her prayer, but it didn’t happen overnight. It came in due time. She had a son and named him Samuel. The biggest miracle was one child—Hannah ended her life with six.

Because God is ABLE

  • Daniel 3:17-18—If this be so our God whom we serve is Abel to deliver us from the burning fiery furance, and he will deliver us out of your hand, O king.  But if not, be it known to you, O King, that we will not serve your gods or worship that golden image that you have set up

It reorients my affections on who God is

  • Isaiah 43:19—I make streams in the desert.
  • When there is no way, God makes a way.
  • God is bigger than my circumstances—statistics are nothing for Him. Nothing is impossible to Him.

It keeps me dependent on him

  • We live in a culture that says I am the captain of my own ship.  And yes, I believe we have way more power and authority that so many people of faith think they have access to.  But I also believe that I need someone bigger than me, to come into my life and circumstances to restore.

It allows me to stay connected to hope + gratitude

  • Romans 5:5 says hope does not put us to shame.
  • What if we hoped and prayed and believed for miracles, breakthroughs, and the impossible like we had NO SHAME!? Trusting that even if/when God doesn’t answer our prayer how we want him to—that He works all things together for the good of those who love him (Romans 8:28) and that even what the enemy meant for evil, God is going to use for good (Genesis 50:20).

God gets the credit + glory

  • My biggest dreams are small to God—He breathed life into creation.
  • Ephesians 3:20 says now to Him who is able to do abundantly more than we could ask or imagine, according to his power at work within us, to him be the glory.

What is that thing that feels too risky to hope for because you’ve been disappointed in the past? Do you have the audacity to praise before the breakthrough?

Thank you so much for listening to the podcast and being part of this community! If you enjoy listening, I want to invite you to subscribe to us on iTunes and rate and review us. Search “The Refined Collective” on the purple podcast app on your phone. Share your review on IG stories + tag us so we can show you some love!

Hey, single ladies— are you frustrated by the dating world? This episode is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources helped propel me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! With you on the journey.

XO,

Kat

Check out this episode!

Podcast

047: Do I Have An Eating Disorder?

05.02.19

I wish we would have this conversation sitting on the couch looking eye to eye because today I’m talking about something really vulnerable that I haven’t talked publicly about in a long time. When we are neck deep in a struggle, we want the get healed quick miracle process… but healing doesn’t work that way and this episode is not that quick fix. I’m here to share my eating disorder, and my path to freedom.  My  hope is that whether you’re neck deep in an eating disorder or you struggle with your body image, that you’ll be able to walk away from this podcast episode encouraged and with practical tools to support you in walking into more freedom.

I believe God has more freedom than you could possibly imagine. But there is no quick fix to freedom. It takes work, discipline, courage, honesty, and the willingness to fail and fall over and over and over again. However, if we are brave enough—we will use those fumbles as our greatest teachers.

“This is especially true of people who rumble with failure. These are people who choose courage over comfort, accountability over blame, and are able to embed key learnings from failures into their lives.” — Brene Brown

All throughout high school, I was an athlete and I was so focused on training to be a D1 athlete that I didn’t stop to worry about body image. However, once I got to college as a D1 tennis player, I noticed the body dysmorphia in my fellow athletes with whom I spent all of my time. I didn’t get it—but slowly their disfunction rubbed off on me.

Almost overnight, food was my main thought. Our coach had us do weigh ins every week and keep daily food journals. One day after practice, my friends and I ate a lot of food. One girl suggested we go throw up our food, so we went behind the dumpsters outside our dorm and she taught us how to throw up our food.

I continued to do this for once or twice a week and I felt guilty about it and honestly I was bad at it. I stopped throwing up my food, but I would binge eat and count calories to make sure I could burn off all of them afterwards. As a collegiate athlete, I was already working out 6 hours a day, but I would work out even more on top of that.

Fast forward, I ultimately quit tennis for a lot of reasons. I thought the eating disorder would just dissolve because of this, but my relationship with food remained the same. It was then that I realized I had a problem and I did not want to wait to reach my rock bottom before I sought help.

Admit You Have a Problem

The cliché is true—the first step is admitting you have a problem. I remember my “aha!” moment clearly, but it didn’t change my relationship with food.

Pause—Identify Your Triggers in the Moment

I had to pause to take note of what would come up for me every time I would binge. Why did I do that? What led to this? A friend introduced me to “HALT” – was I hungry, angry, lonely, or tired? Where in your life are you feeling a loss of control? What are you not wanting to feel? Often we inflict pain on ourselves because it’s easier to pinpoint—I feel pain because I ripped that hang nail off + now I’m bleeding as opposed to digging into the dark, murky, cold, waters of my past.

Refuse to Demonize Food

Do you ever shame your body with friends and then all of a sudden you’re all just self-shaming Mean Girls-style? When I moved to Los Angeles, the women I lived with decided that none of us were allowed to body shame or demonize food. Friends, we were built for community.

Healing is NOT Linear, But Healing is Possible

The healing process is slow, it takes community, and it is not linear. We have to praise the progress instead of focusing on failures and dig into the root of our problems. Never rule out therapy, 12-step programs, or inpatient/outpatient programs. Even if you have to put your life on pause for a year—investing in your well-being is the best thing you can do with your time and money.

Today, I have learned to listen to and honor my body when it comes to working out and when it comes to eating. When I reach for a donut, I know that I an eating it because I feel like eating it and not because I want to numb out.

“She had not known the weight until she felt the freedom” — The Scarlet Letter

Being obsessed with food is not normal.  Not being able to eat without counting calories or mentally noting how much you’ll have to work out later is dysfunctional.  Throwing up your food and starving yourself is bondage.  Pretending like it’s not a problem is insane.

There is freedom for you.

More than you can possibly imagine.

You won’t know how much the weight of this bondage is crushing you until you start stepping towards freedom + I promise you it’s worth the work; it’s worth bringing to light; and it’s worth fighting for…because you are worth it.

Thank you so much for listening to the podcast and being part of this community! If you enjoy listening, I want to invite you to subscribe to us on iTunes and rate and review us. Search “The Refined Collective” on the purple podcast app on your phone. Share your review on IG stories + tag us so we can show you some love!

Hey, single ladies— are you frustrated by the dating world? This episode is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources helped propel me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! With you on the journey.

XO,

Kat Harris

Check out this episode!