I have felt extremely selfish lately.

I was sharing with a friend of mine that because of the season that I am in and coming out of that I feel like I am taking (x100) from the people around me. For almost a year, I have sought out those that I am closest to, seeking their comfort, encouragement, sanity checks, life, wisdom, and love. In all honesty, I don't know how I would have gotten through this journey without each of them. It has been a wild ride, but knowing that at every turn someone would be there to to keep journeying with me was the strongest source of hope and motivation to keep going.

My friend graciously offered that those things have completely been reciprocated from myself back to them. That is hard to believe, knowing the lack of energy and excitement I have had; knowing that I have done much more of the talking and processing; knowing that safe community has never felt more necessary than right now. However, it was a very gracious thought.

Here's the thing, I am not the only going through whirlwind stuff right now.

My friend Christina (affectionately known as "Mia") told me yesterday, "This whole season is just so weird. This whole life thing is just so weird. Ugh."

Yes. Yes, it is.

And since I am not the only one going through things, and since I feel extremely selfish lately, I leave you with a note of gratitude, a small offering of moving toward selflessness once more. Hoping and needing to care for more than my small little world, remembering that life must be knowingly reciprocated.

Dear Friends,

Thank you. You have reminded me that life can still be lived in the midst of excruciating pain, both physical and emotional. You have shown me how to never give up, even when the rug is completely swept out from underneath you. You have stayed close, asking hard questions, engaging in and carrying my burdens with no hesitation, with no limit. You have pointed me to truth, to what is beautiful in the world, to hope. You have allowed me to be fully myself, the brokenness, the questioning, the struggling, and then kept believing in me.

I see in you, who I want to be.

So I set my aim high. To love people, to taste life, to shed the cloak of me, and awaken the heart of we. To forgive and to feel, to choose humility and service over self-promotion and affirmation. Also, to say, "no" and to care for myself, especially when not doing so could bring harm to those around me. To operate out of my true self, of who I have been created to be, rejecting the lies of perfectionism and acknowledging my woundedness, yet choosing to continue growing.

I see in you, glimpses of the Kingdom to come.

And I pray, that hand in hand we carry on, for you, for me, and especially for a world in need of experiencing the transformation of community at the table.

With all of my love and gratitude,