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How to Walk Out of and Into Spiritual Rooms

Welcome to Grace and Space, a weekly newsletter from the Deconstructing Mamas Podcast! GRACE for who you have been, are now and SPACE for who you are becoming and will be!

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Standing with Anna at the back entrance to the sanctuary, taking a short break from our work, considering our church and our future, I imagine my kids on their wedding days, try to picture our lives in this space—the prayers wombed by the walls, the light these windows will allow, the way the exposed brick holds a sacred boundary for the work of the people, the confession of the creeds, the celebration of baptisms, the sorrow of funerals, the familiarity of Sunday morning rituals. Of course it’s just a building. But it’s also a promise. Here is a space where you belong, it says. Here is a room that will bear witness to your continued becoming, your confession, your life, and your faith. Here is your future, your home.


Standing in my sweatpants, nodding along with Anna, working alongside dear friends and pastors with the giddy energy that comes from inhabiting a new space, I couldn’t have imagined that nearly one year from that very day, we would walk out of this room for the last time. I couldn’t have imagined willingly leaving a place I loved so much. I couldn’t have imagined then that in order to hold on to my faith, I would have to let go of my church.



 

This Week on the Podcast: The question we need to ask is this one: Am I being pushed by fear or led by love?  (Emily P. Freeman)

We are absolutely thrilled to have Emily P. Freeman join us on the podcast this week. Emily is a New York Times best-selling author, a mom to three, a spiritual director and podcast hostess. Her most important work is to help create soul space and offer spiritual companionship and discernment for anyone struggling with decision fatigue and trying to make a life in the process. Emily vulnerably speaks about her own spiritual journey and we walked through ways we can be pushed by fear instead of led by love and perhaps how to flip the narrative in our own life when it comes to making hard decisions, especially in the transitional space of walking out of and into the various "rooms" in our lives: faith communities, seasons, jobs, and so many more.


She allows us a behind-the-scenes look into her own very difficult decision to walk out of the "room" of the church she and her family were an integral part of and all the emotions surrounding it: grief and relief to name just two. She guides into understanding how leaving something as important to her as church helped us to hold onto her very important faith. Our favorite part of the podcast was two-fold: when we discover why it's so essential to be your own friend during times of transition, especially during an evolving faith journey, and also how Emily has navigated walking in and out of many different spiritual "rooms" while in the throes of raising her three children.

This episode will be a balm to your spiritual soul, a respite in the rush of life and give room for you to take a long, slow, deep breath.

You can find Emily at the following:


Instagram:  @emilypfreeman



 







 

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Resource Alerts:


If life were a house, then every room holds a story. What do we do when a room we’re in is no longer a room where we belong?


What do you do when you start to feel a shift and must decide if it’s time to make a change? When it comes to navigating big decisions about when to stay and go, how can we know for sure when the time is right? Though we enter and exit many rooms over the course of our life—jobs, relationships, communities, life stages—knowing how and when it’s time to leave is a decision that rarely has a clear answer.


Podcast host, spiritual director, and bestselling author of The Next Right Thing, Emily P. Freeman offers guidance to help us recognize when it’s time to move on from situations that no longer fit, allowing us to find new spaces where we can flourish and grow.


How to Walk Into a Room helps us begin to uncover the silent, nuanced, and hidden arrows for anyone asking questions like: How do I know if it’s time to move on? What if I stay and nothing changes? What if I leave and everything falls apart?


Through thought-provoking questions, spiritual practices, and personal stories, How to Walk into a Room will help you to know and name the caution flags in your current spaces, discern the difference between true peace and discomfort avoidance, navigate endings even when there is no closure, find peace for when you feel ready but it isn’t time, and courage for when it’s time but you don’t feel ready. 


For anyone standing in a threshold, here’s a book to help discern the how, when, and what now of walking out of rooms and into new ones with peace, confidence, and a whole heart.


 

Esther was honored to speak on the Unsilenced Hearts Podcast with Kendall Lamb (@unsilencedhearts on Instagram). They delve into Esther's early church memories (or her curious lack thereof) as a missionary kid growing up in Ethiopia, and her journey in finding community after leaving the church she had been deeply involved in as an adult.


The conversation explores how we can embrace and lean into challenging beliefs and how doing so results in a more expansive, evolving faith. Esther also talks about the sacredness of nature and her journey of rewilding her soul. She shares her experience of connecting with nature in a seasonal way and the importance of embracing each season fully.


She explores the concept of freedom and how her faith shift has allowed her to let go of certainty and embrace personal growth and change.


Esther emphasizes the importance of viewing oneself and others as inherently good and wounded, rather than inherently bad and broken.


She also discusses her current projects, including writing books of meditations and offering spiritual direction and shares her "letter from Love" at the end, or as she calls God recently, "GLove."

Listen to the episode HERE.


 

Can't wait until Tuesday and need just a little MIND-BLOWING snippet from our podcast episode that's coming up on Tuesday, April 16, with Emily P. Freeman.


 

One last thing. We want to remind you that we are so glad you are here. We wouldn't be the same without you. You will always find GRACE for where you've been and who you are now, and SPACE for who you are becoming and will be.


Carry on, our new-found friends. Welcome to the twisty-windy, full -of-adventure faith path that's laid out before us all. Love,

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