Why We Hold On, Even When Drowning

Letting Go Never Easy, But Necessary

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We all have dreams and we have such high hopes for them to come true, maybe a childhood dream that we have always had.  Understandable, what nourishes.

Suddenly seems you have that chance, that opportunity to make it all a reality, and you pour heart and soul into it, sweat blood and tears to make it happen, to make it work, yet it doesn’t.  What’s going on and what do you do?  Could be that what you are offering is not what people want, are looking for, need.    Could be that the concept in general is fine, just the content is not what people want or need.  Could be God rejects what you are doing and won’t allow it to move forward for whatever reason.  Could be your motivation is not in line with what God thinks it should be. These are just some of the things that come to mind as to why projects, dreams don’t move forward, don’t bring forth fruit.  Why do we hold on to them even though they are not bearing fruit? Dreams are like our children.  The thought of letting them go, die etc… pains us, is hard to fathom, hard to do, as the song says “breaking up is hard to do” that goes for us and our dreams.  No one wants to walk away from their dream, their dream project that they implemented.  There is also pride, especially when everyone is telling you you’re spinning your wheels.  You don’t want to give in because well, human nature. You don’t want to give them that satisfaction of folding up your tent, paramount to admitting to all the nay sayers that they were accurate in their assessments.  You prefer to keep going even when deep down you might know this is not working, not what people are responding to, want or need.  You might not do anything to move on the things that are going to be embraced, might drag your feet on those. If anyone decided to go right ahead and make all that other stuff happen, not wanting to fiddle faddle, to dawdle, get a move on the things that will work, you might get darn right offended dammit that you are not being supported as you feel you ought to be.  That may not be the case at all, but you might perceive it that way.  Again, dreams are like children and you don’t want to let them go or lose them.  

What do you do with these dreams, these dreams when they come up smack against reality?  Well, you could just ignore reality,  cross your arms, ignore all all input, feel negative about the persons giving the input because they care,  see the writing on the wall as they say, follow only that dream you have, nothing else.  You could do that, to the very end, no matter what the fiscal etc.. consequences.  I myself, been there, done that, not a big fan.  You could adjust the plan to what The Holy Spirit gives you after much meditation and prayer, so it fits God’s will not yours, not easy for us humans to do, pride you see, remember we were tempted by the serpent who said we could be God like to have all knowledge.   You could just accept that the dream needs to be let of and mourn like you would for anything else that you love and you had to release, had to let go of, though it pained you.  Different people will respond differently when faced with reality of the dream not rendering fruit, once implemented.

What of those around them who may not agree with the dream being continued even as it is clearly not rendering fruit? What of those around them who are in any way affected by the financial ramifications, let’s say a musician who is paying the band out of pocket because the gigs for the past year have not produced any revenue though they have heavily invested in promotions etc..? What of his family?  What of friends who care and it hurts them to see him do this and to see all that effort?  What of the band members, those who have heart anyway, how do they feel?  If they have heart, they see no fruit being born of this, and the manager of the band, or if the manager is paying out of pocket for several months, if the band member have a heart, they have to be thinking, no, this is not right.  What do they do? Does the lead singer tell the manager, this can’t go on and risk being seen as the one who burst the manager’s bubble if the manager put the whole band together, launched the dream? If the band members tell the lead singer, will they be seen as the ones who destroyed the dream, burst the bubble, hated?  Will friendships be ruined because the caring won’t be seen, just the bubble bursting?  Tough thing when you have to let go of the dream, and even tougher when you are the one bringing reality home to the dreamer because you risk them potentially hating you for bursting the bubble of this dream.  If you care, and you consider yourself a true friend, then you need to be as honest as you can, with love and kindness, maybe using questions, a parable, like Jesus and those in the Bible did.  If in the end you are thrown out of the kingdom, disliked, at least you know you spoke from the heart.  If you are the dreamer, well only you can decide up to what point you can stay in the dream before it’s time to wake up to reality, even if that reality is not one you like.

This is what the Holy Spirit promoted me to write for my blog today.

Amen

 

Want People Back In Pews, TRADITION!

Holy Ghost

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That’s right darlin, Tradition, just like they that word that we remember from Fiddler on The Roof.  As music coordinator for the local church and one who had made a journey back home to the faith, I have done a lot of research as to what not only millennials are seeking, but in general those who would want to come back to or come to the church, also what they don’t want.  This would also apply to non millennials, the gist of it.

What don’t they want? What they don’t want is the church to be a rock concert, night club, cafe, lounge, opera stage or anything besides a church.  They also don’t want hip and cool man, so if you are looking to become a star and liver out your dreams through the church, they won’t appreciate any of that.  They won’t appreciate it being a way for you to feel good about you, or for you to be some hero, and they will see right through.  Authentic teaching, authentic God, even if it rattles their cage, okay rattle away, but he honest, don’t run, hide, water down, treat them like fragile porcelain, but also don’t be brutal either, judge the sin, but love the sinner.  The articles I have been reading make a similar point, which is that you do not go to church to be entertained to “feel good”, you go to reflect, contemplate, to hear truth, even if uncomfortable.  

What do they want?   They want traditional Mass with traditional song and liturgy, dynamic homily.  As for the arts, they are fine with the creative,  related to scripture, faith formation.   If you are creative and you do it out of true love of teaching scripture and all things of God, teaching that to them, hey by all means. They want the homily, the teachings to be authentic brutal, but authentic, Jesus presented in both his humanity and divinity.  They want a God,  Trinity that is not so pie in the sky they can’t ever relate.  Authentic teaching, authentic God, even if it rattles their cage, okay rattle away.  Be honest, don’t run, hide, water down, treat them like fragile porcelain, but also don’t be brutal either, judge the sin, but love the sinner.  They want the church to be a second home, to guide, point the way, to know that even the apostles, the saints struggled with temptations, with anger, with people opposing their expression of faith, throughout their lives, and that faith is not easy.  One article I was reading pointed this out:  Recent research from Barna Group and the Cornerstone Knowledge Network found that 67 percent of millennials prefer a “classic” church over a “trendy” one, and 77 percent would choose a “sanctuary” over an “auditorium.”.  That says a lot.  In that same article blogger Amy Peterson put it this way: “I want a service that is not sensational, flashy, or particularly ‘relevant.’ I can be entertained anywhere. At church, I do not want to be entertained. I do not want to be the target of anyone’s marketing. I want to be asked to participate in the life of an ancient-future community.”  Again, they want to feel embraced and safe in the church, but they also don’t want to be lied to and not receive authenticity, so finding that balance is crucial.  

Catholicism in particular has such rich traditions and to try and modernize and all that blarney is silly and dumb and no it should not change its’ doctrines of truth on anything in terms of core teachings, but each church must do a much better job of catechesis, formation, apologetics and application of it all to life and community, internally and externally.  Sadly not everyone wants to hear get back to basics, get back to tradition, to catechesis and all that jazz, and so the church pews stay empty, as the secular and all other marvels are tried in order to grow the church instead of getting back to basics.  These articles I found interesting and hope you do to.

https://georgiabulletin.org/news/2017/04/local-parish-leaders-gain-insights-reaching-millennials/

http://www.thecatholictelegraph.com/millennials-at-mass-to-whom-shall-we-go/33000

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/jesus-doesnt-tweet/2015/04/30/fb07ef1a-ed01-11e4-8666-a1d756d0218e_story.html?utm_term=.b2fcdb9b9994

 

 

 

Supportive Yet Protective, Tricky?

Letting Go Never Easy, But Necessary

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You care, you want to be supportive, but you also feel protective of the person, the entity perhaps you are a member of and those you interact with within the entity.  You want to be supportive, but you may also have a protective side, especially if you are an empath and intuitive etc… by nature who sees with the spirit guided by what the Spirit gives you.

When one of persons there is spinning their wheels to perhaps exhaustion trying to make an idea work that you know is not meant to be, sense they might be stuck in the past even with their personal life, and you sense this very clearly or even see any of this unfold right before your eyes, it’s tricky.  If you simply tear down their dream, then you risk their resenting you for being a downer and all that.  If on the other hand you play pollyanna and all is well, just smile and pretend all is bright and beautiful, you are not being much of a true friend. You are on a scale trying to keep the scale from tipping either where you are too harsh and totally make them feel crushed and like you have no faith in them, which you might, just not in a particular idea or project, or where you present a pollyanna unrealistic this is going to be great, all working out peachy, keep spinning your wheels, no biggie.  Neither will serve anyone well.  What do you do? For one if you are dealing with a professional situation, do your homework, so if you are going to give advice, you are giving it based on solid research and feedback maybe even that others have given on what has been going on.  When you present any advice, even to a friend make it clear you support their dreams, their efforts to achieve a goal, but you are concerned about the spinning of their wheels, how that energy could be focused elsewhere.  Anything regarding a personal nature, not moving on, returning to the past, maybe find a song that talks about leaving the past in the past and why it should stay there if they are artistically inclined. Letting them know you understand nostalgia can be powerful, but there is a reason people are not part of our lives, why we are apart, not truly connected anymore to others, best to move forward, not back, especially if that connection etc.. was toxic in any way.

We might know in our heart, spirit and soul that what the Holy Spirit has given us is what ought to be, a vision after God’s own heart that should be implemented, but others may not see that same vision, and may be spinning their wheels, banging their heads against the wall doing stuff that is not workable and not part of God’s great commission or even remotely part of his plan for the group, the person, the organization, but if we are going to get that vision across we can’t do it with the scale out of balance in either direction.  Meditate, research, meditate on Scripture, and mediate some more.  You will know how to approach things, even if not everyone will appreciate your efforts to do things right, the heavens will.   Hope this helps in your journey through life and relationships.

Amen

Focus, Maturity, Does that Mean Dull?

soaring eagle

When we think of focus, maturity, grown up, stability, and if you say that to a “young person” they roll their eyes and think “dull city”, no way do they want to hear that.  In today’s snowflake climate, yes I am using that word, get over it, no one wants to do any of that, get focused in a good way, mature, grow up and take full accountability for their life, streamline their activity etc… For the longest time in my life, neither did I.  

I believed that commitment to one thing, making a choice for one path in career, in spirituality etc.., even marriage, that major covenant, scared me to death, though I had not realized it, not really, not to what extent I had not grown up enough to be able to be like an eagle and soar to achieve my full potential and the path I was meant to follow.  The path I was meant to follow was that of ministry through the arts, while honoring my culture.  However, I now realize that in order to have true freedom, I have to have true structure, clarity of path, of boundaries, streamlining of activity, of thought, philosophy and worldview.  There has to be clarity in all these things, not based on what anyone says I ought to have, not because I want to be liked or want to “feel like I belong” to a click or anything.  It has to come from true divine inspiration, meditative prayerful contemplation and study, so there is a inductive and deductive, also heart and spirit conclusion to my worldview, my vocational path understanding, to releasing my fears, baggage, so that I don’t ever do busy for the sake of busy.  Is my growing up etc…. dull and boring? NO, just the opposite.

Now I am focused on my catholic and Italian heritage, on music and the arts within that community, really delving into it, giving it my all, connecting to it heart body spirit and soul.  With this I can start to focus my music on the deeply spiritual, on the faith based, and my activities can be focused on really exploring and enjoying my culture, connecting to others who love the culture, who revel in it.  That can be very inspiring to me on many levels.  I can have peace and enjoy life day to day, smell the coffee so to speak and though the fibromyalgia is ever present, it doesn’t really have to take over life, even if I have to make adjustments to accommodate.  With a structure of self discipline, of decluttering my life on many levels and focusing it, streamlining it, I can focus my creativity, my energies, really flourish in what I am meant to do.  For my personal life, for connecting with my twinflame soulmate, that will make a huge difference because I will likely be in the right place to connect with that person and they with me, so everything I am meant to have in my life, to achieve, I will.  If I were scattered, fragmented still that would not be the case, not be likely, so growing up, maturing, focusing, streamlining all of that does not mean dull, or boring it means the opposite. Growing up, focusing, clarifying once and for all on a number of things was a true blessing and I pray I will thus be a blessing to many others in my lifetime.

Amen

What Can I Be Certain Of?

aspen trees

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We often hear about not seeing the forest for the trees and all that, right? We also have this tendency in life of constantly wanting guarantees, of wondering how can I be certain of this and that? What of the faith journey, of love, of anything?  

Let me begin with my faith, my Christian, Catholic faith.  I have been open in saying that there are certain things taught by the church that don’t jive for me, never will, they are man made, not Christ made, they are assumed and inferred.  What does that leave me with, what then can I be certain of?  Well it is not rocket science, not for me.  I am certain based on holistic biblical text, connection the dots of the following:

  • The Trinity
  • Sin is missing the mark in behavior and such
  • There is natural order of marriage, sexuality, of all things
  • The main role and job of the church is to teach on this and the power of the Trinity and prayer to help us maintain natural order and stay on the mark

Does this mean we always will, no, but we are not perfection, nor robots, we error, but we can be forgiven and get back on track, get second chances to get things in order somehow, even after we have missed the mark.  We don’t have to punish ourselves, stay and live miserable, that is never an option, ever.  That I also realize.

What of love, vocation, what of those?  In these areas I realize:

  • I can’t let the past determine the now or the future
  • I have to allow myself to love and be loved
  • I have make the Trinity, my faith the center of any relationship, not the religion per se, but the faith, the Trinity, prayer
  • I have to love the person for who they are and they have to love for who I am
  • We have to really be partners on so many levels, integrate into each others lives fully
  • It’s okay, that we can be as one and still be individuals, to not be afraid of that
  • My path is arts ministry, finding a way to combine the two for my joy and to fulfill The Great Commission is my path, one I should be more than ready to make

It’s such a blessing to have these realizations, even if later in life, but to have them and be ready to embrace them fully.  I hope to have someone to embrace them with in my life soon.

Amen

Close Collaboration Possessiveness?

Letting Go Never Easy, But Necessary

Some of us want partnership, collaborative, cooperative, synergy, intertwining for very good reasons.  However, that and speaking, sharing from the heart openly, freely and whenever free flowing is misinterpreted. 

I create strictly according to in the moment, at that moment Holy Spirit given and inspired material.  I don’t force anything, set time specifically aside to write songs or music or even my meditations.  I write and record things as they come on the spot when they come on the spot more often than not,  in terms of my own stuff.   However, I also have a strong sense of wanting to closely collaborate with others day to day, find those who will value my skill set as an artist and so much more.  Who will value that I wear my heart on my sleeve, will pry their own heart open, see wearing heart on the sleeve not as an evil thing, see my sharing what I think and feel for the greater good of the project, the relationship etc.. as a good thing, not an evil thing, or a possessiveness thing.  It doesn’t matter if it is professional or personal, to me there has to be communication, free flowing, open and from the heart, heart on the sleeve.  There has to be connection, cooperation, collaboration, really working as a team or nothing will work.  I don’t want to do lone ranger only and so when I make any kind of really positive, great connection I see no reason not to reach out, share, heart on my sleeve, be totally open with my ideas etc…, intertwine socially as well.  Why not?  It seems others don’t always take well to this, and view it as possessive, as perhaps I might have ulterior motives and withdraw, suddenly withdraw.  I know I am simply sharing, caring, reaching out and being authentic to myself in doing so, in seeking integrated collaboration etc…, but others don’t seem to always see it that way. Hmmm

I could stop being me, feel awful about being me, never reach out again, give up on ever finding solid partnerships to engage in creatively or otherwise, ones that are bold courageous, heart on the sleeve etc… I could do all of that, feel sad, depressed about it all, but that would mean life and the world would be deprived of my works, of what I could achieve and that is not an option.  If others choose to let their fears, paranoia etc… get in the way and withdraw, or walk away, okay, up to them, but I have to keep being me, reaching out, speaking from the heart so on so forth.

Amen

What To Do With Brick Walls?

slide_337809_3550010_free

The Journey That is Life.

When you have seen something heading for a crash, a ship headed for a crash, when someone has expressed frustration at the ship not going anywhere, being stuck in the middle of the ocean, if you care your reaction is to reach out and offer your observations etc..,, to want to help change that.  If you are like me, don’t do PC, just just speak from the heart, well just let it rip, say what is and let the chips fall where they may.  Sometimes a good thing, other times well depends.

Sometimes you have people who though they know that the way the sip is being steered is going to crash it, and they do need to make changes, when you do offer your observations, insight, cooperation, collaboration, caring, support etc…, they shut down.  They have a brick wall up, baggage etc… from a lifetime that wont let them do it, wont let them have any intimate collaboration, any real collaborative effort, with anyone, any real connection.  What happens when you give your observations etc… even though they agree with your assessments, after you offer ways to get the ship moving or keep it from crashing, want to work with them? Silence, total silence, static.  That silence can be very hurtful if you take it personally, if you determine it’s about you, when it isn’t.  It often is about them, their “stuff”, their baggage, issues etc.., not about you.  Unless you have been stalking with 50 calls a day etc… then it’s not you, not about you, about them.  They have not been able to come to terms with whatever you have said, put forward, including caring and support, even on a strictly friendship basis.  You may have to make a decision as to whether you wish to keep communication with them, or instead bypass them to communicate the second in command, for someone else on the job that can relay the info to them.  You may have to end up being a lone ranger in order to achieve what is necessary to keep that ship from crashing or to get the stagnated ship moving.  Is it fun being in a situation where your wearing your heart on your sleeve, being open with your communication, feedback, ideas is met with silence, perhaps due to others “stuff”? No, but it is what it is.  What can you do?  You can mediate to break up the negative energy.  You can keep the lines of communication open with that person in the hopes they get over whatever bee got into their bonnet so to speak, or you can decide you don’t deal with them and bypass them communication wise.  You have to decide which course of action you want to take and if you have to go it lone ranger to promote the organization, project, cohesively in a way of course that is fitting to the brand etc…okay then that is what you have to do.  If they wish to continue with driving the ship towards the rocks for a potential crash, hopefully what you do can offset it, or the impact of it.  If what they do keeps things stagnated on one end, hopefully what you do as lone ranger, not by choice by necessity. will.  When you care about something, you sometimes have to take initiative when others don’t see the importance of coordinating, synergy etc…

Though the silence is sad after feeling there was synergy, a chance for real connection, collaboration, cooperation, sharing on many levels including creative, I realize it is not about me, but about them.  I will have to make this journey alone in ministry for the organization and to have it thrive, as much as that makes me a bit sad, but that is the way it looks now.  It is sad that though there was agreement on assessing what needed to be done, there does not to be a willingness, an ability to truly synergize and coordinate. It is what it is and all I can do is do my best.