Updated: Aug 4, 2020
After posting my reflection on "Restless?", many friends wrote me personally and said that they could resonate with the reflection. One told me that she often wants to rush time. Another echoed the importance of letting God be God. Some commented on how touched they were by the generosity and kindness of Diana and Jerry. Many responded to the call to Let GO, Let OUT Let OFF and Let IN. Two were curious and brave enough to ask, "When you have the answers to the questions, do share in a future post ok?"
OK! Let GO!
3 years ago, today, I relinquished all my responsibilities at Tea Talk and left it in the hands of 3 capable ladies. The relinquishing of my responsibilities were challenging, not because there were not any capable persons to hand my responsibilities over to but because I was still holding on tightly to what I had spent many years dreaming and many tears building.
Not until my dear friend and beloved brother, Presley asked me a question. Presley always has questions for me. Usually, I don't have answers for him and so I often ask him the same question he asked me. However, that time, I could not not have an answer for him because the question was about me. He asked pointedly: "Are you worried about leaving Tea Talk?" It took me a day or two before I could give Presley an answer. And not just an answer, but an honest answer. A less than honest answer would betray our friendship.
Worried I was! Very worried indeed. Would the 3 ladies be able to work together? Would the advisory council that I put together be able to provide counsel and support for these ladies when needed? Would the council members have the same rapport and trust I have with these ladies? Would Tea Talk be able to make sufficient revenue to keep it afloat? Would all the staff be able to carry the heart and soul of Tea Talk forward? Would they actually know the core values of Tea Talk? Knowing is one thing. Applying it and carrying it forward is another. What about the countless individuals that needed counseling or simply a listening ear? Who would listen to their stories?
Worried I was. In fact, so worried that it affected my health. Just as I was pondering over Presley’s haunting question, the Holy Ghost started to speak to my spirit. For those of you who are not acquainted with the Holy Ghost, don’t worry. I am not losing my mind. The term “Holy Ghost” is a very old English way of referring to the Spirit of God. I am not referring to a religious practice but a spiritual relationship with the Divine. Some of you may call it an inner voice. The conversations that went back and forth between me and the Spirit were: “Michael, why are you worried? If you say you are worried, you are saying you are god. As though you have all the answers and solutions to Tea Talk’s woes.” Truth is, I am no god. The conversation continued: “Michael, why are you worried? If you say you are worried and spending all your energy on Tea Talk, you are saying Tea Talk is your god.”
A few days later, I met Presley as he casually walked into Tea Talk. “What’s up?” “What’s up?"
“Hey Presley, remember the question you asked me about Tea Talk and if I have any worries leaving? Truth is, I am very worried but God rebuked me and said: 'Michael, if you are worried, you are saying you are God. And if you are worried, you have made Tea Talk god.'”
I told Presley that I am no god and certainly did not want to make Tea Talk my god. So I resolved not to worry. That was how I found the peace and courage to let go and walk away from all that were happening at Tea Talk and began my sabbatical journey to rest.
To Let GO, I need to relinquish. Relinquish the need to be in control; to manage appearances and what others might say. Relinquish the need to make right decisions and the urge to make my decisions right. Letting go of the illusion that I am the master of my life. Letting go of trying to be perfect; to please others at the expense of caring for myself. Letting go of my selfish ambition; the whitewashed jargon of moving from success to significance. Let go! Shattered dreams! Broken toys! Give them all to Jesus.
But to let go, I need a safe place to let out!