Tuesday, September 11, 2012

I didn't know my own strength...

“And I crashed down and I tumbled,
But I did not crumble

I got through all the pain

I didn't know my own strength…”

For whatever reason the above lyrics from Whitney Houston’s song on her final album “I look to you” have been my personal anthem for the past few days. Dianne Warren wrote this song for Whitney, and her explanation for bestowing such a powerful song to our late performer was that this was her story.

Music means a great deal to me. It and poetry were my first form of comfort in my early years and the two have been inseparable in my life ever since. I study lyrics and have been known to listen to any genre of music as long as the writer of the song has managed to capture my heart. Love songs are the very best and worst at the same time. The memory of a love song can celebrate you or haunt you, depending on the circumstances that go along with the tune. But good or bad, I must admit I sing it all…loud and strong, mostly in my shower.

When this song began to resound inside of me, I was curious about what was coming about that would make me need these lyrics to get by. Initially, a friend came to mind and something inside moved me to share this soul stirrer with her. I thought that I had done my job in passing on this encouragement but it seemed that this melody would reveal itself to me a day later.

I recently took an amazing trip to Breckenridge Colorado to be with a group of beautiful people from the writing community. On my way to the airport this past Sunday morning, a beautiful spirit who is now one of my closest friends wanted to take me to Loveland Pass, the Continental Divide. I stood atop the pass at 11,990 feet in elevation and knew for sure that this was my God moment for the day. I had been ill the night before and still recovering but when presented with the opportunity to climb to the top, I went for it…strength. While up there I looked around took several photos and declared that this was symbolic of how high God wants to take me.

Before leaving the lodge that morning I received an email that when I was to return home, life would be different. I accepted this much needed changed and packed with teary eyes…strength.

When I turned the key to my house that evening, I walked in and felt a change in the atmosphere immediately. I knew for sure that this was my new beginning and I walked around fully aware that this had been granted to me from God. I hugged my kids, chatted with my daughter and finally locked up the house and turned off the lights to go to bed alone…strength.

The next morning, I woke up with a burden on my heart that I could not shake. I thought that I needed to apologize to a very close friend but when I listened more closely for direction, I found that I needed to reveal my heart to that person. I had been avoiding this moment for quite some time now but it seemed that on this particular day, I could go no further in our relationship without being truthful. I sat down to write what will always seem to me to be one of the hardest letters in my life, and I have written many. After reading and rereading several times, I sent the letter at the risk of losing my friend…strength.

For the rest of the day, tiny revelations kept coming to me and they were the fuel that sparked me to keep moving even when I couldn’t see light. One revelation was that love revealed is most powerful when your love for a person does not rely on their response or validation…strength

The other is that as a woman, I was created with an enormous capacity to love. Love ignites our wombs. Love bears down and pushes children into the world. Love sparks the desire to bring a child into our lives and raise them as our own. Love reaches out to ailing friends and dying parents. Love nurses, and protects, and walks along side of the people in our lives. Love revealed is extremely powerful and I am finding within my lifetime that very few are able to express it.

I want to speak a fresh word into the spirit of my kindred sisters who love to love. I want to tell you that you are never more powerful, or necessary, or alive than when you open up your heart to love the people that God has placed in your life’s path.

And when the pain of living in this world starts to wear on you, tap inside to the maker of such love and allow Him to reveal all of the strength that He has placed inside of you…

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