Freedom in Health & Wholeness – Freedom Series part 3

If you’ve landed here and haven’t read my last two posts… please stop what you’re doing and go read them now.
This is the third in a series on Freedom… and the other two lead up to it.

Freedom. It was the word I felt whispered to me as my word of the year in January  2020. 2019 had been a year for me of re arranging life, renewing thoughts, and re doing some of the ways I did things and in all of that re shaping God had begun, I started looking at ME from the inside first… the things He was doing… and for the first time in my life I started to feel “unashamed” in many areas.
One, included my health.
I had been ashamed of this girl for so long;
I didn’t know how to see past her body, the vessel that had stored all her hard things;
But God did, and in an invitation to me to just learn more about Him, He actually taught me more about “me.” And, as I began to love Him more, I began to love me more. This was a good good body. She had done hard hard things. She had risen from many occasions that seemed unlikely to get past, and all along the way, I finally realized, she had some hard things dealt, but you know what? Through all of it, she had never quit giving love…

Except to herself.

Whoa.
I started to look harder at her. Deeper.
What had made this girl store so much bad in her good good body?
What had made her stuff down?

I have said for 3 years, “I’m in a health journey”… but last year… I realized, it wasn’t just the weight I needed to lose. I needed to lose what weighed me down. I needed to go deep, inside, before I went “hard” on the outside. No amount of physical exertion was going to heal the deepest, unfit areas inside.. that was a deep work I needed to do with Jesus. First

I needed a health journey still, yes,
but I needed to approach it from the inside first;
from the aspect of Spirit , Mind and Body … in that order. NOT Body, mind then Spirit.
I had some deep work to do with the Spirit and heal some very old wounds so that I could then, align my mind with that new way of thinking and get in agreement with it, and finally, begin to sit back and watch as my body began to come along.

Enter Revelation Wellness.
Just at the time I was coming to this deep realization myself, God had my path cross this amazing Ministry who was already commited to this way of thinking and doing and being! REV WELL began to speak into my life too… “Love God, so you can love yourself, so you can love others well” … became the order of thinking they spoke so often. Fitness was important , but a sacred fitness was needed first… and I began to go on the journey with them; reading “The Revelation Wellness” book, joining challenges and groups, following them on Instagram and all the places, downloading podcasts, and whatever else I could consume. I friended many of them and for a year, watched how they lived their life in LOVE… not just to God, and to others, but to themselves. Some have become real, dear, friends and I’m so so grateful!
And quickly, it was like a switch was thrown . I suddenly got it. I understood.
This good good body needed to be loved too.
She had done some very hard work and was doing all she could to keep me healthy,
but she needed my help.. and that “help” started with Jesus helping me see I needed to  love her.
OH, friends! Don’t hear me being a “freak” about Revelation Wellness… it’s not a cult or crazy christian fad, or some weirdo ministry… LOL
but God did, and IS, using it as a tool in my life to kick this health journey into a place that honors Him, embraces me, and loves on others. And that is so soooo good.

Enter Valentines week.
I’d decided my “word of the year”. Freedom
I’d been pondering the places I felt God was pointing me to in that freedom.
Shame. Fear. Finances. Writing. Health.
And I was ready. for. it!!! Bring on the freedom God! C’mon , lets gooooo!
First, can I just say, how kind of God to begin to give me glimpse of all these freedoms in Valentines Week!  It was as if He was speaking to me LOUDLY, “see how I love you?”

“Bring it on”… I said. LOL… boy, was He about too!
I was sitting at work just before my break, when a notification popped up on my phone.
A Revelation Wellness notification that they would be going LIVE on Facebook soon.
Perfect… I could take my break and pop it up to watch.
When I signed on , it was Alisa Keeton, founder of Revelation Wellness, saying that she was going to do the drawing for the last challenge and someone was winning a prize!
I had entered a few times for this challenge and so my interest was peaked, but I thought. “Eh… thousands and thousands did this challenge. I’ll never win anything.”
But I watched anyway.
She was calling out 10 names that were going to go into a drawing for this prize and at number 7 I had this thought, and I can’t even tell you why I was so sure, but I was…
“I was going to win this prize.”
WHATTT? My name hadn’t even been called yet! Where in the world did that thought come from?
“And number 8!” Alisa said, ” Kay Gleaves! ” and she smiled at the camera.

I screamed!!!!  Co workers poked their head around the door, asking, “Are you ok?”
Yup!  I’m fine! LOL 

She finished calling the last two names and honest folks. I started crying.
I whispered to God and said, ” You’re up to something aren’t you Jesus?”
And I felt Him say,
“Freedom”

Oh man….
The next few moments were surreal as she did indeed, pull my name from the “hat”!

“KAY GLEAVES” she exclaimed excitedly, “You’re the winner! You’ve won the retreat ‘REST and RESTORE!”

This retreat was a week with Revelation Wellness instructors and minstry, geared to slowing down and diving in- resting and restoring- and I thought, “That’s amazing! This retreat will be such a way to let Jesus just enter in and finish His good work in me and I’ll have more knowledge about what it might be like to be an actual Fitness Teacher Gospel Preacher”… because legit Friends, I had been feeling the stir to say yes to that too. A school, weeks of classes, a new approach to wholeness and wellness that started with LOVE over any fear; a pouring in and taking me new places in my own “FREEDOM” that ended with a week long retreat with Alisa and the Rev Well Instructors in Phoenix Arizona. I was secretly holding the “want” in my hands, but I hadn’t let go of the fear of my yes yet. I wasn’t “free” in that place yet… it felt too scary. Too big. Too beyond me still.

SO this? THIS prize!? Man… it was gonna lead more toward the “real yes” I wanted to give eventually, and it felt like the perfect baby steps towards it. I was soooooo excited. I was sooooo humbled and in that moment I felt soooo KNOWN by my God. He KNEW I needed this! He KNEW me … HE saw the journey to sacred fitness I had been doing and the health journey I had been on; He saw the girl that stored bad things in her good body and He was making a way where I didn’t see one!
I bawled.
More co workers came running.
“I’m fine. Still fine. Go away.”
LOL

Somehow I made it through the last part of my day and I was drained. The kind that felt like a crash of adrenaline- I was overwhelmed and overcome by LOVE.
I sat in my car to go home and before I pulled away, another notification chimed.
I glanced down.
A message.
What? A voice message?
Whoa… A voice message from Alisa Keeton herself!  Wow!
“Hi Kay! It’s Alisa! I wanted to just jump on here in person and let you know there has been a bit of a mix up.”
(My heart fell. What? A mix up?)
“I’m soooo sorrrry… You didn’t win REST and RESTORE Retreat! My brain was just so tired I miss spoke.”
(I felt the tears come up. It was ok. I was gonna get a hat or something. That’s cool. I’ll be fine.)
“YOU WON INSTRUCTOR TRAINING!!!! ALLL OF IT! THE BOOKS, THE LESSONS, THE CLASSES, THE LEARNING THE RETREAT! ALL OF IT!!!!!”

I wish I could insert an emoji or something at this point that would demonstrate the level of disbelief and joy and wonder and complete undoing that this did to me in this moment, but one doesn’t exist.
I began trembling.
I played the message again , cry-sobbing out of control.
I opened my car door and puked in the parking lot.
No kidding
Goose bumps actually hurt me, I felt them so strongly.
It was crazy.

I went from thanking God for the baby steps He was giving me, to full on freaking FREEDOM like a parachuter out of a perfectly good airplane!

What was evvvvennn happppeningggg..
Did she just say INSTRUCTOR TRAINING?
I heard God laugh.
Like the parent who is soooo blessed their daughter loves the good goooood gift they just gave her and is watching her antics in JOY.

He was waiting.
He was sitting back with more than I could ever imagine or expect and He was ready to undo me with abundantly more.
Wow.
I still get those goosebumps.
I’m going to Revelation Wellness Instructor training.
I’m going to be a Fitness Teacher Gospel Preacher. Yes- one long run on title, not separated by commas like it’s two different things. Because it’s not. It’s one. It’s a bringing fitness through the lens of the Gospel and I . AM. HERE. FOR. IT!

There’s so much more to this story, but it’s too much for now, but let me say this:
How is this FREEDOM in Health?
God walked right up to my every day lunch hour and said,
“I see you, Kay.
You are KNOWN…
and this gift… it’s going to help you walk even more, toward a #sacredfitness
that will bring about the real physical health in your good good body.
We’re coming for her together.  You and I .
You’re free to love her right where she is, but Daughter, chains are dropping off!
FREEDOM is here”
**************

Update:
I’ll be starting my Revelation Wellness Instructor Training late summer early fall, and going to AZ in November, right before Thanksgiving. HOW TIMELY is that!!!? I’d love if you’d all pray with me as I journey toward this time too… in the meantime… be watching for more about my #sacredfitness journey!  I can’t wait to see what He does in this undoing and remaking

Freedom Series – part 1

I haven’t mentioned my “word of the year” yet.
I’ve been holding on to it.
Not sure why, except I just felt like God needed to show it to me more before I released it out into the world.

Whoa.
And did He ever!
I pondered many words. They were all good. All had meaning… but I landed pretty hard on two: “unashamed” and “freedom”.
Pondering them  both, I took them to prayer. .
Me: “God, I want to live unashamed , of You, of me, of my walk, of my life, of my writing and my family and my health and .. alll . theeee. thingggggs.”
Whisper in my heart: “Sounds like Freedom.”
And that was that.
Word of the year: Freedom
Freedom from shame
Freedom financially
Freedom in my voice, and in my writing
Freedom in my health
Maybe even a Freedom from my job
For sure, Freedom from Fear…
All these began to roll in my soul as real and tangible and able, and suddenly what was born, was a belief that somehow, 2020, was going to be like walking into my promised land. I can’t explain it. But I knew it. It was as if God Himself said,
“Kay, this ground you are standing on is Holy.
You’ve been through Egypt, and are no longer slave to that time.
You walked with me through the wilderness, not lost, but following Me,
getting it right somedays, and getting wrong other; but
all the while, learning and growing.
And now, We are crossing over “the Jordan” on dry land…
and Daughter, this ground, this promised land,
is Holy.
This is where I’ve been leading you – to bless you.
I’ve been preparing you for what I’ve prepared for you!
So take off your shoes. You’re standing on Holy Ground.
We’re walking into your promise!
There will still be enemies to fight and giants to face,
but “this land”, is flowing with milk and honey and it’s for you.”
OH MY Goshhhhh… Friends, I might sound like a lunatic, but I guess that’s the first part of my “freedom”… because I don’t care. LOL
The conversation in my heart around this “word of the year”, at the beginning of the year, was as real to me as typing the words into this computer screen right now.
He’s been preparing me for what He’s prepared for me and I’m telling you,
“FREEDOM” was not a word of coincidence.
All those things that have been piling up inside this body, inside this girl, forever… had a tight grip; but it was all just held tightly by a lie! The lie that it was always going to be this way; that broken was always broken and that I wasn’t going to ever be completely “free.”
Then, as only Jesus could do, He beckoned me to listen to the truth, this time, almost as a command and no longer an invitation…
“Kay! YOU ARE free. Walk in it. You don’t have to get free- You ARE. FREE.
The lie is a chain from which you can step out! I’ve made the way…”
Freedom.
It was going to be my word and I believed for it like I haven’t believed for something in a while…
I’m telling you , I KNEW this was my word.
The walls of my Jordan river parted and God Himself, was leading me across on dry land…” My promised land … His purpose for me… My longing… My dream… His Mission;
I felt it.

Free from the chains of the things that weighed me down;
Free from the chains of the lies I’d believed since I was a kid;
Free from the chains of shame and regret;
Free from worry and angst;
Free from a past that bound and gagged me;–
Free from health issues that distressed me and my good good body;
Freedom in finances;
Freedom in speech and writing and becoming who I’ve always dreamed of being:
AND Freedom from fearing so much … all. theeee. timeeeeeeee.
I felt the chains dropping with my decision to say, “yes… I’ll walk in my freedom, across dry land. You have my “yes” Lord… finally, completely, and it felt like a mini revival in my own being.

Free.
I knew what I wanted it to look like. I knew what I thought it was supposed to be. I believed for what I thought He had designed for me…yet I didn’t know what it all would entail to get there… and honest, was there even an actual “full” arrival this side of heaven?
I just knew it involved me ,
1) Saying “yes” and then
2) Taking that first step on the dry land, while God held back the River, and I looked at both those things in awe and worship.

Let me just stop here for a moment to ask you if you remember the Children of Israels story?
If you thought that coming out of Egypt was the biggest part of their freedom story, I might ask you to read Joshua 3-4. Here is where I get a glimpse of a freedom story that makes me have goosebumps. God led the way. As soon as the priests carrying the Ark, stepped into the flooded waters of the Jordan, the river stopped flowing and formed a great wall so the Children could cross over to their promised land …on dry ground.
Imagine it. Rolling river, flooded, wide and fierce, suddenly walled off and the river bottom DRY. God then told Joshua to have his men take up 12 stones, ones so big they’d carry them on their shoulders, and put them at their camp that night.
He said, “In the future when your children ask their parents, ‘What do these stones mean? ‘ Tell them, ‘Israel crossed the Jordan ( at flood stage) on dry ground… so that all might know that the hand of God is powerful.”

Friends. I gathered some “stones” … I’m setting them up in my camp… and they are going to tell the story of GOD setting me free!
I can’t wait to share them with you… I have several more blog posts coming, so staytuned.

I chose this word in January, and like I’ve said, I’ve been holding on to it for awhile now, and trusting Jesus with how it would manifest in my life this year in 2020…and also, when to release it to you…

Whoa…
Last week, Valentine’s week, Of course that’s how He’d rolll…He started mapping the promised land for me and I believe it’s time to share!

I picked up those “stones”… you know, the things that represent how BIG God is and how powerful He is moving…. and what that looks like in my own “personal” freedom, and I’m readying to share them with you!

I’m telling you … it’s no joke when you give Jesus your WHOLE yes, He swooops down with WHOLE ness!!!  I can’t wait to tell you more!

FREEDOM…

Dry land

Stone stacking in my camp

Holy ground

Promised Land

It’s so kind of a good goooood God to be my Deliverer, my Father, my Gentle Shepherd, my caring Counselor and the Orchestrator of this beautiful symphony I get to call my life…
Man. Who is this He is making me?
Freedom from SHAME is up first in my next blog, then
Freedom from FEAR, then
Freedom in Writing and Voice, then
Freedom in Health and Wholeness
and friends…
I know more is coming. Stay-tuned for all the blogs. LOL
They are telling a story of how He is preparing me for 
what He has prepared for me!

I hope this wasn’t confusing.
I know, it’s long. This whole “freedom story” is going to be long:
And I don’t know if I have all the words for it yet, because I know the stories are still coming…
know what He’s already doing, how He’s already making a way to freedom in so many ways in my life, and I’m just trying to set you up for them…
Truth is, I don’t know what it all looks like yet, but I do know,
I came out of the wilderness and I crossed over on dry land while walls of water helped form a deeper truth that this God, who knows the way, is going to be pretty audacious about it!
I picked up some big stones to bring back to “camp” to tell about His audaciousness
and that He is still on the move to show HOW POWERFUL He is, and how well He loves and maybe mostly right now, I’m undone by the gift… the knowledge… the crazy goodness and unspeakable “more” of… #whatdoesyourheartneedtohear?:
I am standing on Holy Ground.

#wonthedoit

It’s ok to grow “quietly”

I have a favorite tree.

I call it the Sentinel.
It’s huge and towering , stationed at the very end of our property, up a rolling field and at the top of a hill; standing guard; watching; observing; challenging any who might stray on to the property or any who may try to harm the land.
I love that tree.
In fact, I love it so much, I almost always just look at it. When I come out of my home my eyes go straight to it. When I pull up the drive, my eyes are drawn to it. Floating around the pool, mowing the yard, tending the chickens, walking the dogs, giving treats to the horses, sitting on my porch… I always look at it. And love it. It’s in the center of every sunset, it’s dark silhouette striking; unwavering; formidable’ strong; demanding to be seen.

Have I mentioned I love this tree?
LOL
I do. I love watching it in all the seasons. Glorious is all of them.

But recently, I noticed another tree. It’s next to the Sentinel. And now that I’ve seen it, I can’t believe I never saw it till now!  When did that tree grow? How did it get to be so big and yet remain unnoticed for so long? Obviously it’s been there growing for some time. Obviously… but man, how’d I miss it?

And it made me think… in some seasons, it’s ok to grow “quietly”.
All this time it’s been there. And I haven’t noticed. The Sentinel “spoke” loudly. The Sentinel demanded attention. The Sentinel captured my eye and my heart and my love.

And all the while, “Little Tree” was there.
Silent in her growth. A whisper of a sprout , maturing and progressing quietly.
She went unnoticed. Unseen. Undetected.
And she went through seasons just the same … quietly, softly, unassumingly.
Gaining her ground, firming her roots; standing taller and straighter and more purposeful herself … just quietly,
flourishing.
Until one day, the Sentinel’s shadow was outgrown.. and she made her debut. 

She can’t be unseen now.
She used her season of silence to become a beauty all her own.
She used her quiet growth to mature herself, firm herself and root herself.
She used her time unseen, to develop a beauty all her own,

and now that I’ve seen her.
I can’t unsee her
And while she is not a Sentinel… it’s not her job; Her position or Her purpose…
She is a queen.

And I love her.

Hey Friend.
Let your unseen season… grow you. Go deeper. Root further. Stand firmer.
RISE taller.

You’re a Daughter of the King. You’re a Queen. Your silent season is not for naught.