Walking the Sea

Walking the Sea: March 2012

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Radio: The Gateway Drug

Soul Talk. If it wasn’t already the name of a great radio show, I would have to steal the title for my next book. Instead, I was invited to be a guest on the show so they get to keep their name and I’ll come up with another intriguing and deep title by which everyone will be fascinated. The host of the show, Desiree, who goes by Jahdaa, asked me to come on as a guest a few weeks ago and we recorded the live interview last night on St. Patrick's Day.

I admit, I was nervous going into it. Though I have spoken many times before an audience, I have never been on the radio much less on the air live.What if I couldn't think of what to say right away? Silence is not golden on the radio and there have been many times speaking I would like to edit what I said, or didn't say as the case may be. One has to think on their feet in speaking and especially on the radio. You have to be interesting, entertaining, and informative. This would definitively be a new experience, a challenge in which I was untested.

The premise is pretty simple: "There is one question that is asked of every guest: 'Are you doing what you have come here to do and being who you have come here to be?'" Desiree goes on to explain, "This question traverses all genres of art, music, writing styles, color, creed, nationality and beliefs. This concept comes from a deep knowing that if EVERYONE did what they have come here to do, World Peace would ensue! And, if one is not doing what they have come here to do, how can we help? Sometimes the act of hearing what another experiences is all one needs to pursue their authentic path. Bless it up with your essence!" 

So last night I arrived at the studio ready to do what I could to "bless it up with [my] essence." Books in hand,  courage screwed to the sticking place, I was ready and looking forward to it. I really was! During a song break, Desiree came out of the recording room to invite me in and asked if I was nervous. "A little, yes," was my reply. I took a seat my the microphone and she gave me a pair of headphones to wear in which I would be able to hear her when we were recording. A quick run through on the program for the evening and we were ready to go.

After the initial introductions, Desiree and I dove into the conversation. One of our first topics was my writing, the books in particular, and I shared what writing was like for me, and how it felt to be so truly vulnerable with an audience. She asked how I was able to be so honest with what I thought and felt and I told her, I know the value of my own soul, my value with God. I know that value can't be touched. When a person reads my words or are buying one of my books, they are not buying a piece of me, they are buying a photograph taken at a point in time. I hope that image is true. I pray it speaks to souls. But I am able to say what I do because I know the books are not me. I also know God uses them in ways I don't expect and can't predict so I have that assuredness it's not all about me either.

As many of you will already know due to the lack of posts on this blog, it has been a quiet time period for me. Yet it hasn't been unproductive. In these months, I have written devotionals, articles, and have been editing what I have written thus far for the next book. But as I told Desiree, we all need times of quiet to experience life and grow in our crafts. Though the output has been small, my input has been great and I am a better writer because of what I have seen and heard and done. 

After such a period, it always does take courage to put pen to paper and be vulnerable once more. I have no control over who reads the books or reads this blog. But radio was a new challenge for me. I naturally go deep, honest and real. I get passionate and I knew the radio show would be no different. I was ready for that, ready to give my soul free-reign to traipse in whatever topics came to the surface. And a variety of topics did come up. One after another. In my writing or conversations that lean toward the spiritual direction realm, my mouth will oftentimes take what it hears from my soul, bypass my brain entirely, and just release the words into the air. These words have the power to surprise and teach me as much as anyone else resulting in moments  such as when I was redesigning the Advent devotional, Encountering the Holy, when I thought, "I wrote that? Wow!" Sometimes, we don't know what is inside ourselves until we let it get out without a leash.

So how did I answer the one question Jahdaa asks every guest? I told her I believed our souls are on a journey and what we are meant to do and be changes as our journey progresses. I can write and speak anywhere but being present to my friends, gathering life-experience and wisdom, being Amy's "favorite Sarah", those are things I am meant to be doing right now. Though the large question of what I'll be doing tomorrow looms before me, if I let it take up too much space in my thoughts, I won't be doing what I am here to do today.

In the end, the joke was on me. While answering her questions, I found the attempt to reply was the answer in itself. I feel most myself, my truest self, doing precisely what I am here to do when my soul is talking. I am acting upon exactly what God gave me to do when I have a microphone or pen in hand and it felt effervescently invigorating. Though I have never done drugs, to me, the interview felt like what it would be to  try for the first time an addicting, mind-altering drug and crave more of it. I loved everything about last night. I loved the conversation, the microphones, the music, all the lights and the "On Air" sign shining red. I loved who I was in that room. I loved seeing my soul take off without me trying to reign it back in. I am hooked. 

Thank you Desiree for giving me the opportunity to do exactly what I was placed here to do. I am grateful.

For those interested in hearing the broadcast, Desiree will be giving me a recording of the show and I'll add it to this post as soon as she does. In the meanwhile, listen to her show, "Soul Talk" in the Salem area and surrounding towns on Saturday evenings at 88.5 FM from 8-10 pm.

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Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Europe 2011 Videos - Parts 1 through 9

Here are all nine parts of the video featuring my photography from my time speaking in Europe last spring. I created these for mine and your enjoyment. Above each one, I have titled them with the places featured in that particular segment so you can pick and choose what to watch. Enjoy!

Part 1: Watford, London, Belgium, and Netherlands

Part 2: Germany

Part 3: Switzerland (FWCC Conference)

Part 4: Paris, France (1 of 2)

Part 5: Paris, France (2 of 2)

Part 6: Birmingham (QUIP Conference) and Quakerism in Northern England (Swarthmoor Hall)

Part 7: Quakerism in Northern England and Time with Hetty (Kendal and Pendle Hill)

Part 8: Stonehenge, Bath, and London

Part 9: Cambridge, Lewes, Brighton, and London

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Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Europe 2011 Video - Part 7

Here is Part 7 of my trip to Europe last spring. This covers Kendal, Pendle Hill, and my time in the North Country with Hetty.

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Thursday, March 1, 2012

Europe 2011 Video - Part 6

Part 6 of my Europe videos. Seven is almost done as well!

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