A Warning.

“New beginnings invariably come from false things that are allowed to die.”

-Richard Rohr

I am really encouraged by so much buzz around the area of calling.  There are a lot of great resources emerging to help guide you to better understand your own unique purpose {Jennie Allen's book Restless is great}.  Today I saw this article on Relevant about creating a life purpose statement.  For me, this affirms that we are on to something with facilitating LifePlans, but I feel the need to warn you.  Narrowing in on who you really are is hard work.  And, then actually living out of what you have learned is even harder.  Don't get me wrong- it is incredibly fulfilling and wonderful, but it is hard work.  And here is why:  

To live out of our true self, we must continually put our false self to death.

Often times this means giving up dreams that were never really meant for us, not meeting other's expectations, facing fears of rejection, loss of what we perceive to be financial security, etc.  And please don't forget that we have an enemy who comes to "steal, kill and destroy", and who is the "father of lies."  He wants nothing more than for you to be confused as to who you truly are.

As we dig to discover and affirm who we truly are, we are forced to acknowledge all that we aren't.  This ultimately brings freedom, but at first it can be truly scary.  This is why at the end of day one in the LifePlan process we ask our clients to write a surrender letter to God.  Living a life of calling requires coming back to this same place of surrender over and over.

Sometimes I think we struggle to let go of our false self, not because we like that "person" better, but because we are insecure and uncertain about if we can own who we really are.  It may seem easier to keep up appearances or to remain safe and comfortable then to boldly live out of our greatness.  This is one of the reasons why it is so rewarding to guide others in the process.  When the woman in front of me is uncertain in expressing her greatness out loud, I can walk her around the room, pointing to the charts that now capture her life and say, "Look!  Behold!  It is you.  And you are good."

After the two day process is over and the client leaves my home they must make the daily choice to live their LifePlan.  This requires courage, intentionality and a community of people.  I remember the first time I said my "I exist to" statement out loud.  It was vulnerable.  What if I say this and no one agrees?  Over time I have lived into it, grown in confidence, and have had many friends say, "Yes!  This is certainly you."  This statement has become like a guide-- reminding me of how I best show up and helping me make sense of moments when I suddenly feel fully alive.

It is one thing to dig into, discover, and name who we are.  It is another thing to intentionally live out of this.  Calling is not just learned.  It must be lived.  Taking the dive into more deeply understanding who you uniquely are will take time and will require courage.  If you are picking up a book on purpose, or even considering something like a LifePlan-- kudos!  It will not be a waste of time.  But, be warned that it will ask something of you that goes far beyond a couple days or weeks.  It is asking you to better steward your life.

Oh, and in case you are curious, I exist to guide others to connect the parts to the whole, in order that they would live deeper, fuller lives.


If you want to dig more into this idea of the false self vs. the true self then I highly recommend picking up books by Richard Rohr-- in particular, you should read Falling Upward: A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life.

{This post originally appeared on Bekah's personal blog}