MOPS has begun. I cried on my way in that first morning. (Thanks to the amazing build in “Closer than you know” by Hillsong.) I teared up and giggled more than a couple times while taking pictures and videos from that box in the back that I almost fell off of. Our first meeting was an emotional roller coaster and the culmination of a lot of prayer and excitement.
We are all. finally. together. So many opportunities await us this year; some will be beautiful, others might stretch us in uncomfortable ways, but not a single one will you you have to face alone. We are actively building community and what a blessing it is.
Mandy Arioto, CEO/Prez extraordinaire for MOPS International (based and operated out of DENVER C to the O if you didn't catch that) said a lot of sweet and funny things last Thursday in that video and I want to touch on something she said that was especially poignant to me. There’s a slight chance that as a result of my being knee-deep in PMS right now that this point isn't as powerful as I think it is, but because of said PMS, I don’t really care. ; )
We have been beating the freedom drum as we’ve geared up for the start of our year. We’ve discussed what becoming free entails and what it requires from you in our blog posts, promo videos, and status updates. We’ve preached about being bold, going first and letting love be the loudest voice but it wasn’t until our first morning together that I realized the implications of that last part. When you think gutsy, boldness, going first - you think in terms of action right? In verbs. “What can I DO to be more bold or to go first?” So it makes sense that I took ‘making love the loudest voice’ and applied it only to my voice. I vowed to use this year at MOPS to challenge myself to begin using different language in my life. To watch my tone and attitude toward my husband, children and friends. To slow my anger and impulsivity, to hold my tongue and remember to breathe love all over the things I do and speak. As noble and beautiful as these challenges are: I didn’t consider for a second until Mandy said it, that I have a say in allowing love to be the loudest voice I HEAR on a day to day basis too. And it kinda floored me.
All too often we’re so busy listening to the voices of the world that we effectively mute the steady hum of Love that follows our every move. We harken ourselves to voices that say “you yell too much, you’re not a good mom” or “remember what your body looked like before kids?” We’ve memorized the steady drone of “You. are. not. enough” and we’ve let these words sink in rather than attuning our ears and hearts to the still, soft voice saying “you are loved” “you are worthy” and “I will help you, you need only ask.” The vibration we feel in our solar plexus when our Father’s authoritative love says “Come find me in the quiet my dear, and remember you ARE enough.”
But if we thought breathing love into the things we SAY would be hard, then we’re in for an adventure when it comes to training ourselves to HEAR love first in our lives when it’s in competition with the volume of the world. Wanna know where we can practice? Here.
If we will boldly speak love over one another at these meetings and in the conversations and growth that take place outside of these meetings, then maybe our ears will be familiarized with the sound of love, our hearts will recognize their subtle acceleration and our bodies can grow comfortable with the the warmth that comes from letting our Father's love be the loudest voice.
As Mandy said, “God is proud to be seen with you.” Practice first the sound of this.