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What Being Knocked Off My Feet Taught Me About Being Present & Awakening To BEING Who God Made Me To Be

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The past five months have knocked me off my feet. Literally. On September 15, 2021, I walked into a standard foot surgery, only to wake up to my recovery process not unpacking how I planned. Hearing my surgeon declare, “That was the most challenging surgery of my career,” and outline my longer-than-anticipated physical therapy schedule, my hopes of rocking cute boots in time for Christmas and running into 2022 quickly faded out of focus.

Imagine three months without being able to drive, pick up your own groceries at the store, or walk up and down stairs. For a strong, independent warrior, I felt stuck, trapped in my own skin—seeing the world moving fast all around me, while I scooted along on a knee scooter.

Why did this have to be so difficult?

Why did it have to be so hard?

Sitting typing these words, tears are forming in my eyes, and my heart is filled with gratitude. Reflecting on some of the most challenging pages of my becoming story, I see the pain, I see the disappointment, and I see God’s faithfulness etched over every, little moment.

My word for 2021 was “heart.” What I see now retrospectively is that God had to stop me to refine me. I was running so hard, so fast, I was missing the point of this becoming adventure He’s invited me into all along: the process.

Becoming me is not—and never has been—about a destination; it’s ALWAYS been the journey. Over and over God is reminding my warrior heart, “Emily, be PRESENT in this moment because it’s an opportunity to invite my PRESENCE to PREPARE you for what’s next.” Thank you Jesus for constantly teaching and molding me.

This knocked-off-my-feet season has brought me back to my heart’s cry since my sophomore year of college when I tattooed that eight-letter word on my wrist: becoming. With every fiber in my Enneagram 1 being, I want to passionately pursue becoming who God made me to be and both equip and cheer on other warriors to become who God made them to be, too. Throughout 2020 and 2021, I lost sight of that somewhere along the way. I got caught up in the doing and goal pursuing, forgetting that being is the most important thing I can ever pursue… and in being who God made me to be, I never miss out on a single thing.

Is pursuing goals and “doing” bad or wrong? Not at all. It comes back to our heart—the posture in which we are pursuing. When I focus on chasing a goal, I miss the person I am, the person I’m becoming. When I focus on becoming me, I get to experience growth as a person and celebrate accomplishing goals along the way. It may seem like a mere semantics shift; however, it’s a foundational heart pursuit that truly makes all the difference in who we are becoming.

I believe God used a foot surgery to lovingly and patiently teach me to embrace His “rhythm of grace” when I just want to rush through the process…

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”

Matthew 11:28-30 (The Message)

Warrior friend, there is so much beauty in the process. And the process is necessary. We don’t become without the becoming… we must embrace the journey to truly BE who God designed us to be.

Stepping into 2022, my word is “awaken”. As God has refined my heart (and He’s still refining every day!), He is awakening me to more of who He made me to be, the woman I am becoming, and what He has uniquely designed me to do. Since 2007, my heart’s battle cry has been to passionately pursue becoming who God made me to be, and equip and encourage other warriors to become who God made them to be, too. I love the invitation in Galatians 6:4-5 in the Message to embark on this journey becoming who God made us to be…

Make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that. Don’t be impressed with yourself. Don’t compare yourself with others. Each of you must take responsibility for doing the creative best you can with your own life.

Galatians 6:4-5 (The Message)

Writing this post on this fourth day of February 2022, I’ve been cleared to walk, rock some cute tennis shoes, and as I’m trusting God with the best next steps in front of me, He’s opening my eyes… awakening me to BE who He made me to be… and to how I can continue to share my becoming journey with this beautiful community and equip you warrior friends with resources for the becoming journey… I am forever thankful for you linking arms with me on this becoming adventure and truly believe the best is yet to come! As I shared on my Instagram yesterday, I’m so excited to share a few things coming up here at…

(1) I am LOVING our new series, Warrior Conversations, going live on Instagram with a fellow warrior asking them questions… this has been so much fun! If you’ve missed a Warrior Conversation, you can watch them all here.

On Monday, February 7, we’re hosting a Warrior Conversation with the one and only Jackie Brewster (aka. @enneagramwithjb), unpacking How The Enneagram Helps You Uncover The Best Version Of You! Join us on Instagram Live Monday, February 7, at 6:30pm EST. If you’ve ever wondered about the Enneagram, why it’s important, and how to learn more about it, growing and becoming who God made you to be, this is a conversation for you!

On Monday, February 14, we’re hosting a special Valentine’s Day edition of Warrior Conversations with a Singleness, Dating and Relationships Q&A with myself and Cody Cottle. Here’s what’s really fun… ladies, have you ever just wanted to understand how men think?! And guys, have you ever just wanted to understand what’s going on in a woman’s brain? We’re going to share from a single guy’s (Cody!) and single girls’ (me!) perspective answering your questions on Instagram Live! Join us Monday, February 14, at 6:30pm EST. And you can submit your questions in the comments of this blog post, or email me here.

(2) Every week, you can watch a NEW Becoming Story as warriors share how they are becoming who God made them to be! Check out all Becoming Stories here.

(3) Every Sunday the Becoming Me Email Tribe receives resources, encouragement, and stories directly in their email inbox—an incredible resource equipping us to BE who God made us to be. Subscribe here.

(4) My first book, Becoming Me, is ALMOST DONE! Our Design Team is close to wrapping the finished design and then it’s off to publishing! Publishing release details, launch team opportunity, and launch party details are coming soon!

(5) We’re dreaming up epic NEW resources, workshops, courses, and MORE… stay tuned for more on this in the coming weeks.

I love you warrior friends and am so thankful for this journey becoming who God made us to be together! Cheering you on big time as you’re becoming who God made you to be, warrior friends!

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