Love

I believe in Jesus

I believe in Jesus. His is the name I use to describe the loving, present, meaningful Presence of God here with us.
Let’s just get that out of the way.
I believe that the purpose we all look for is found in Him.
I believe that the freedom from shame that we look for is found in Him.
I believe that the meaning behind all of life is found in Him.
I believe that the Oneness with the universe we want is found in Him.
I believe that the order and mind behind science is found in Him.
I believe that the love we seek is found in Him.
I believe Jesus is NOT what anyone tells you He is… He is not what I tell you he is. I know what Jesus is to me today, right now. And tomorrow, that will grow, expand, soften, harden, change shade and nuance, blow up and cover me.
Jesus is beyond definition. It is why the Bible is so infuriating and invigorating.
But there are a few things about Jesus that I can hand you to hold so you can try out the fit in your palm and the weight of His glory in your life… things that tie to real life so that as we learn about Jesus, our lives change and as we live our lives God makes more sense.
Jesus’ power and spirit are constantly available everywhere and at all times to anyone who wants access. Access feels like peace, hope, love.

Jesus uses His power to remove shame, standards of perfection, guilt, and contempt.
Jesus loves you unconditionally and the best way to experience Jesus’ love is to love yourself the way He does.
Jesus’ story involves the goodness of the soul and the body, both.
Jesus […]

Prayer for Love

A prayer for love and seeing. Of black cats and clean forks. A life full of Body full of Soul.
*****
Take a moment to notice your surroundings. Relax your jaw and your tongue. Feel the earth support your weight. Feel God support your spirit. 
*****
God, when I sit in this room, I can feel both alone and the opposite of alone.
I can be aware of the table and my coffee. I can feel the air moving in and out to my nose. There is a chair beneath me and a black cat walking back and forth around us all. My fingers still feel wet from washing breakfast dishes. 
I can choose to be aware of sensations. And in the choosing they are either a nuisance or a wonder. 
I can choose to be aware of You, too: The I Am, The Presence.  The One who is always here. I can choose to feel you in the air and in my bones. 
God, when I sit in this room, I can feel both alone and the opposite of alone.
I can choose to see you as separate from me. In this way, you are here and yet different from the “Me” I know. You are a loving relationship that requires space between us.  I pray and you come. I request and you give.
I can also choose to see you as essentially IN me. In this way, you are here as surely as I am here. You are a loving Presence in my cells that requires the connection with my own mind. Here, to love myself is to be loved by you. Here, to accept the body I am in, is to accept that this body is Us. Here, to pray for peace […]

Imagination and Kissing

We cannot force ourselves back to life all at once like a sudden combustion, but we are never past hope. The wick is still in your heart. You can burn with passion again.

 

*****
Force of will
turns nothing on.
Candles are lit
like women.
With fire
and focus
and melting.
*****
It’s that magic combination of body and soul that comes with focused attention, but the soul must be included.
 

 
“There are two ways to reach me: by way of kisses or by way of imagination. But there is a hierarchy: the kisses alone don’t work.”
-Anais Nin
*****

Keep up with the entire Body full of Soul Series HERE.
We are talking about reuniting our bodies and souls and finding the passion kindled when we do. 

Write 31 Days 2015

 
Hi Friends! Welcome.
Take a slow, deep breath.
Count to 4 as you inhale.
Hold all that breath in your lungs as you count to 4 again.
Then, when you are ready, breathe out slowly and fully.
*****
Welcome to this space. It is as much yours as it is mine. May it be a rest when you need it + a kick in the butt when you need that too. All these tiny pixels, created by fingers on keys, mean something to me + I hope they mean something in your life too.

We will talk about bodies + souls here. We will talk about love + making it. I am a pastor, speaker, writer, and a sex educator.
So, now that I’ve made every possible person slightly uncomfortable, let’s see what good we can do in this uncharted territory. Please proceed wisely and know your own boundaries. love, Nicole
*****
Body full of Soul is a series inspired by the annual Write 31 Days venture.
Everything is Connected. We are whole beings and it matters what you do with your body and how you think about your body.
Let’s set aside a little time each day in October to give attention to the miracle of being human.  We are made of stardust and the breath of God, after all.
 

All of the essays + pictures + sensual delights
will line up here for your attention.
 
ESSAYS + GOODNESS

C.S. Lewis Said Something – on having and being

Touch Me, Please, So You Can Touch Me – on angels and animals

Imagination and Kissing – Anais Nin and me

Good Night’s Sleep – relaxing

Pique Your Curiosity – on Parker Palmer and the wildness of your soul

Prayer for Love – seeing with new eyes and closeness of heart

Life is a Freakin Miracle – presence and a Bible reading just for you

Get […]

Quickie 3

quick thoughts…to help you get in the mood for love…
 
Warning:
Hugging Causes Love
*****
Stand close to me.
Closer.
 
Wrap your living arms around me
and I’ll wrap mine around you.
Until our torsos press together so soundly
that our hearts can whisper in each others ears.
 
Hug me til I’m real,
til the day releases me into your custody.
 
Even the monks do it.
They say it causes love
forgiveness too.
 
We are both here,
maybe we should try it.
*****

 

 

Previous Quickie Thought to help you get in the mood.

Quickie 2

quickie thought #2… talking to myself again…
 
Your fat cells cannot keep the love out.
Love penetrates.
You, my Darling, act like fat destroys Love –
like Love will disintegrate upon contact.
How weak and fragile you imagine It.
Love knows no destruction, fear, or preference
for which kinds of cells it touches.
As long as those cells carry the distinct signature inside
that reads, “You” … then they are each perfect. 

 Previous Quickie Thoughts to help you get in the mood for love.
 

 

Start coloring with 50 Shades of Grey

I write and speak on the topic of sex.  I want to be careful with the trust you have given me on this subject. I will not tell you whether you should see 50 Shades of Grey since I haven’t seen the movie yet. Only you know what is beneficial for YOU … but hopefully this will help you cultivate freedom and beauty in your own life either way. 
Here’s what I learned from reading the Fifty Shades of Grey books:
I had limited my own creativity. Most of the actual activities within the book were not appealing to me BUT a few were, and more importantly it got me thinking about how artistic and creative someone can be within their make-out sessions. 
Texture.
Music. 
Surprise. 
Sensation. 
Voicing what you want. 
Clear boundaries and room to play within those rules. 
Rather than giving thought to whether the movie should exist or if it will literally destroy a generation, give thought to your own story. You do not need to save the world. How about we first save ourselves?
Does your body need your attention? Does your spouse’s body need your attention?
Fifty Shades of Grey gives a lot of attention to bodies.  This is another thing I learned: It is especially important for those of us who’ve struggled with bodies being GOOD and BEAUTIFUL and perfectly made by a GOD YOU LOVES YOUR BODY — to intentionally focus your own loving attention on your body.
Where have you been limited in your thinking about your body?
Where have you settled for “mediocre” in making love? 
Is sex an obligation? Is it something you do to make babies? Is it something you do for attention? 
How do you move? Could you move differently?
What is your sensory experience? Could you add […]

By |February 13th, 2015|Love and Making It|0 Comments|

How to have a soulmate

Lately, it has been very cool to say that your husband is not your soulmate.
My Husband is not my soulmate – like here
My Husband is not my soulmate – or here
And I get it. It feels good to be strong and independent and logical.
“I buy my own diamonds and I buy my own rings.”
These women are breaking through the myth that there is one, magical person who is your other half and who will make your life complete. This is a lie. No human is going to make your life complete. Any human you know deeply and intimately will make your life crazy, confusing, tiring, hilarious, and worthwhile… but not perfect or even complete. Life is not complete for more than fleeting moments, unless you are dead. If you feel complete for more than about 60 minutes at a time, you are probably dead and should ask someone if they can see you.
But, soulmates are real and not believing in them will rob you of the best a marriage can be. You can have a soulmate.  You can marry your soulmate. It is possible.

Do you want to know how to marry your soulmate?
Mate your soul to the person you marry.
 
Mate your soul to the person you marry and they will be your soulmate.

MATE: Join together; connect mechanically.
Join your soul together with your spouse and your souls become “soulmates.”
The miracle of real soulmates is not that they found each other and complete each other.  The miracle is not the fairytale of twinkly eyes gazing across a crowded room and falling in love.  That’s the easy part. The miracle is two people with initial chemistry and attraction, each deciding to choose […]

Just Do It

If you love your husband but just can’t find the motivation or desire to have sex or initiate sex, this is the most practical help I can give:
Just Do It
I know it’s not romantic. I know it’s not ideal.
We want passion and an irresistible magnetic pull towards the love of our lives, but we do not live in Outlander or Twilight or 50 Shades.  No one is writing our romance for us – in OUR lives. We have to do the work of making time to love our spouse with not just our minds but our bodies too.
Many of us spend all day basically in our heads. Our bodies serve to carry our brains around and not much else (except to eat Chipotle! Thank you, mouth!). I mean, we work hard but we do not move our bodies for pleasure or mastery of movement.
This causes a disconnect between our minds and our bodies in that we are not accustomed to a life that requires a conscious, practiced connection between body, mind, and soul.  We move minimally or with rough, uninspired, exhausted actions throughout long days.
Then, we come home and our husbands (usually, but sometimes it’s the other way around) want to make sweet love… and we are so disconnected from our body that it feels foreign, awkward, and… well, like a lot of work, to get up the energy to have sex.
BUT if they hang in there with us and push through the initial rejection (miracle!) then we kiss and kissing turns to sex… and most of the time, we are really, really glad we did have that sex.  We really love our spouse and making love to them is a good thing.

It’s a lot like […]

How to keep a marriage

What lights a relationship on fire?  What keeps it going after fifteen years?
What sets butterflies to flight in your stomach when your eyes make contact?
What keeps your bodies magnetized so that the pull towards each other never weakens?

The obvious answer is mutual attraction, but what is that exactly? How do we stay mutually attracted?  What’s the answer to “How to keep a marriage magnetized?”
 
People are not permanent magnets. We do not just naturally hold onto our charge in a relationship. We must keep electricity running through us so we can keep our magnetism pulling us together.
 
 An electromagnet is made from a coil of wire that acts as a magnet when an electric current passes through it but stops being a magnet when the current stops.
 
At first it seems like our relationship is more like permanent magnets than electromagnets. We are pulled together without even trying. The attraction just seems to happen and we accept it as fact, but there is a vital element available in a new attraction that wears off over time without an intentional electric current shooting through your coils.
If you want your coils to stay attracted to his or her coils for years to come, the essential electric thought you must keep flowing through your mind so that your bodies will attract is this:
I’M SO LUCKY TO HAVE YOU & YOU ARE SO LUCKY TO HAVE ME.
 
The more time you spend counting the ways your spouse is awesome and how lucky you are to have them, the more humbly grateful you will feel for your relationship. Equally important is the time you spend realizing how awesome you are and how lucky they are to have you, because this gives you confidence.
HUMILITY + CONFIDENCE […]