I have tried to write this post three times. I have prayed for, referred to so many gorgeous sources, looked at my life and my friends’ lives to find the words that need to be said and heard. Recently, I have written about how I am really trying to be honest to God and myself, especially as we make our way to the cross. So, I felt that I needed to introduce this series, Beloved Little Souls with honesty about my life. I struggle and have always struggled to truly believe that I am worthy of love, that I am good enough to exist and that I could ever be capable of doing anything of value. Harsh? Yes. But these are the lies that I have let seep into my heart and soul, these are the dark thoughts that have played over and over in my head, these are the lies that society has fed me and has fed you. Today I was on Pinterest and I saw this quote:
“Can you remember who you were, before the world told you who you should be?” (K.W.)
We have been told throughout our entire existence and are currently telling children who they should be, what they need to do to be worthy and acceptable of love and ultimately that unless they do a,b,c they will not be of value in this world. We hear these lies, every single minute of every single day. They surround us, they are shoved down our throats and they come packaged in a variety of ways. Then if we manage to wade through the lies and come to a place where we are capable of saying, “I love myself exactly how I am, I am worthy of love and I matter.” Someone somewhere will see that little light of hope and try to squish it out. They will condemn you as “Egotistical, prideful, conceited.” This attack often spurs us back into square one–back to that place where we believe we just aren’t enough.
That is why I am writing. I am writing for you and I am also writing for me. I want to do what little I can to remind you that in a world that tells you you are not enough, you are unlovable, you are not worthy–I am hear to say: Oh you, my love, you are SO LOVED, you are more than enough, you are not just lovable–you are already SO LOVED and you are worthy of all the beauty and joy that this world has to offer. I need to hear it and so do you.
There are some days that I have to admit that I don’t believe that I am worthy of love and that something is inherently wrong with me–but fortunately I have a wonderful community of people (some are the authors of my favorite books) who are there to remind me of the truth and physically or figuratively hold my hand till I can believe it again. I hope this series of posts will serve as a reminder to you that you are so very loved and that your presence in this world makes it a brighter place–you produce a light that cannot be replicated, so why not just let it shine?
I have chosen to entitle the series, Beloved Little Souls. This title comes from one of my favorite endearments, Beloved, and the gorgeous Hebrew word, Neshume-le, which means “Beloved Little Soul.” Back in September (2016), I discovered The Return of the Prodigal Son, by my man Henri Nouwen. Henri (I feel like he and I are kindred souls and I now consider him a dear friend, so I call him by his first name), challenges his readers, and himself to hear the verse Matthew 3:17, “And a voice from heaven said, ‘This is my Son, the Beloved; with whom I am well pleased,'” as directed toward Jesus but ourselves as well. Henri uses the phrase: “You are the Beloved, on you my favor rests [or] with whom I am well pleased” over and over again, in a couple of different books.* The first time I read this phrase and let myself hear it within my own heart I felt peace and love. I suspect you not only need to hear it but need to learn to trust and believe in it. I also know I need to be reminded of it so that maybe, just maybe I will truly let myself believe it.
So let’s begin on this journey together. Beloved Little Souls just setting out on a path of, God willing: healing, reconciliation, love, discovery, peace and joy.
I want you to take a minute, just pause and let this phrase, “Beloved Little Soul” wrap around your heart and bring you peace. Take a deep breath and let this settle on your heart; imagine I am sitting with you holding both your hands (please forgive my clammy hands!) and looking you directly in the eye and I want you to hear, really hear and listen with your heart what I am about to say to you. “YOU are God’s Beloved. YOU are a Beloved Little Soul! Yes, you! Don’t give me that look–I am talking about YOU. YOU are SO VERY LOVED. Now please, I am begging you–stop believing the lies and trust–yes, I know it is so hard to do so, but trust that YOU are the Beloved–with whom God is well pleased.”
I am so excited to enter this journey with you and with God. I hope that you will join me and simply let yourself rest in God’s loving and peaceful embrace.
May the peace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.
Peace, Joy, Blessings and All My Love,
*Henri Nouwen, The Return of the Prodigal Son: A Story of Homecoming; Henri Nouwen, Life of the Beloved