Leaving the tribe and striking out on your own is hard.
Leaving the tribe and striking out on your own is even harder if part of the tribal culture has been to undermine your confidence in your goodness, wisdom and ability to take care of yourself – and never more so than when the tribe you’re leaving is a spiritual community.
For a great many of us, leaving our church family is one of the most significant decisions we will make. None of us takes it lightly. Each of us who leaves a Christian community understands we are not merely walking away from an ideology or group identity, we are choosing to remove ourselves from our circle of friends, from our support systems, and from the only family some of us have ever known.
It speaks to the gravity of the choice when you consider how many people come to conclude the hardships of leaving outweigh the benefits of staying.
But as Anain Nin said, there comes a day when the risk to remain tight in a bud is more painful than the risk it takes to blossom.
And you, BRAVE one, have made that choice, haven’t you? You have inhaled deeply the scent of the promise of what it means to blossom, and now, you simply know in your heart of hearts what you must do.
You’ve crossed the line, and now you know you can not go back to being the person you were. You know too much. You’ve grown too much. You’ve seen to much. It’s time to allow yourself to hurt in the growing, instead of hurting yourself trying to stay small.
Time to become your big, bold, beautiful, BRAVE self.
If you have left your church community and are feeling isolated, disoriented and unsupported, then BRAVE is for you.
BRAVE is an online course designed for women who have left the mainstream Christian church and who wish to re-orientate their faith and spiritual practice to be both self-determining and spirit led.
BRAVE runs over eight weeks, and involves:
– An online blog (totally private and away from the outside world – no one can see it except participants) with weekly postings and space to leave your comments and responses, designed to stimulate introspection, meditation, discussion and enhance your journalling.
– A private, facilitated Facebook group where we can interact with each other every day, talk about our discoveries and experiences and share any issues which arise for us.
– Support, both technical and pastoral, in real time (Facebook chat) or via email, as well as a safe space and supportive culture.
Each week, I’ll bring to the table one “talent” a BRAVE woman will require to journey through the wilderness of spiritual self-determination. “Talents” supports the idea you are –
– Good, and God loves you and is pleased with you
– Gifted, and those gifts are a blessing to you and to others
– Enfolded in grace – God isn’t angry, and you have nothing to be ashamed of.
The topics for each week are:
Courage – Fear of others, Fear of change. Fear of not having enough. Fear of rejection. Our fears may drive us if we hold unanswered questions about our own capacity and ability.
Creativity – What we’ve learned in the past can be a hindrance if we think we’ve come to the end of understanding. Resilience, willingness to fail and be wrong, and courage to move outside the safe and the known will take us to amazing new places with Him.
Truth – It takes guts to step outside the tribe, to decide others expectations and perceptions of you are not your problem. It takes guts to stand in your truth.
Wisdom – You have a good gut, but many of us have been taught to distrust our inner voice. We’ve given away our power by accepting narratives which painted us as untrustworthy and rebellious, by virtue of things we were powerless to change.
Spirituality – Beliefs can change according to who and what we align ourselves with, but our spirit is like a compass – always pointing us toward “true north”.
Alliances – Strategically choosing whom we align ourselves with gives us true relationship, with a balance of autonomy and support.
Clemency – Growing in greatness and influence as we spread your wings means learning to love, accept and forgive, and be loved, accepted and forgiven. The journey is one of love and compassion for ourselves and for others.
Authenticity – The greatest impediment to joy is shame. Learning to expose our true selves to others takes courage, and requires deep and empathic support and compassion.
The next course begins 20th October, and I’d love to have you journey with us. Please follow the link below to apply to BRAVE, numbers are strictly limited.
If you’d like to know more, please don’t hesitate to contact me (Jo Hilder) at email@example.com
I am so looking forward to helping you move forward into a BRAVE new way of being your most wonderful self.
Because you are enough, already.
Love, Jo x
Click on the link below for more information and to apply to the next BRAVE course commencing 20th October, 2014