Behind The Mirror
Embracing the FEELS - rage, power, sadness, tenderness - ALL of them have a purpose

Embracing the FEELS - rage, power, sadness, tenderness - ALL of them have a purpose

August 19, 2019

We all have tender, soft parts of us. We equally have strong, powerful parts of us. For a long time, these dynamics were out of balance for me. Not because I didn't have them, but because I thought I needed permission to access them. Which left me in this kind of numb space.

When you feel like all you can be is gentle, you end up full of rage - because the power has no where to go. And when you feel like all you have to be is strong, you end up with loads of anxiety. Because the tenderness has no where it feels safe. These power dynamics inside of us are constant. Learning to lean into what our body needs to express and what our heart needs to feel, is so vital.

Every part matters and every part is needed. In this episode, I share from my own journey of "stuffing" my emotions (for YEARS) in trying to be good. I talk about how this affected my parenting, being a spouse and the daily panic attacks I endured. I also open up about the year when I finally brought them all to the surface.

 

Anna's blog: www.justajesusfollower.com

Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/annadimmel

Talking about body - self-acceptance, sexuality and being present in your skin

Talking about body - self-acceptance, sexuality and being present in your skin

August 9, 2019

We are made of three equal parts: mind, body and spirit. But, for many of us, mind and spirit are seen as the focus while our bodies are the afterthought. The body is often viewed as the flesh; the part that needs to be contained, managed and taught to submit. In this episode, I explore the idea of body being equally as valuable (and good) as spirit and mind. I share my experiences from purity culture and the lengths I went to in denying myself. I talk about how abuse and trauma played a part in my disconnection with body and how I separated from my body altogether. Disconnection with our bodies can lead to many addictive behaviors, self-harm, depression, anxiety, eating disorders, etc. This episode is an honest look at my journey of learning self-acceptance, self-forgiveness, being present and how I am climbing back into my skin again - embracing every part of body as GOOD. 

Anna's blog: www.justajesusfollower.com

Suggested guided meditation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5TvIdqigPk4&list=PLb09q0R7gAwQ3ou1lUWZcJZEtgNeoJNJf&index=3&t=0s

Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/annadimmel

 

Every choice has value - letting go of regret

Every choice has value - letting go of regret

July 17, 2019

Living with regret is something many of us struggle with. From our career, parenting, love life, marriage and relationships, the desire to do everything "right" is a high standard to achieve. But, because of the pressure to be "perfect", we can we get entangled in the fear of making mistakes, so we get stuck...unable to move forward. Or we feel such pain over the mistakes we've made that we lose the ability to trust ourselves. Learning to see mistakes as part of the way we are designed to live, shifts the perspective. Trusting that we were made to make mistakes and grow from them, is trusting the Divine. Every decision has value - good, holy value. Living from this place opens us up to take risks, try new things and live a life free from shame.

Anna's blog: www.justajesusfollower.com

Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/annadimmel

Religious Trauma Syndrome - with Dr. Marlene Winell

Religious Trauma Syndrome - with Dr. Marlene Winell

July 7, 2019

Dr. Winell is a human development consultant, educator, and writer in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her background includes 28 years of experience in human services, in both community and academic settings. She holds a doctorate in Human Development and Family Studies from Pennsylvania State University and is the author of Leaving the Fold: A Guide for Former Fundamentalists and Others Leaving their Religion. We discuss the symptoms of RTS, the cycle of abuse that occurs in many churches and how the trauma of betrayal from former friends of loved ones in your faith community can leave damaging effects. 

If you enjoy our conversation and would like to talk with Dr. Winell personally, look for the free 20 min session link on her website and mention the podcast when contacting her. 

Dr. Marlene Winell: https://journeyfree.org/

Anna's Blog: www.justajesusfollower.com

 

Pain does not have to define you

Pain does not have to define you

June 27, 2019

Before I sat down to record this episode, I asked myself: if I could only say one thing what would it be? My answer to that question was immediate: you don't have to be defined by pain. THIS is the core of my message. This one sentence is everything. Because every single one of us has experienced pain. But, how we handle pain depends greatly on our personalities; it also determines the kind of life we will live moving forward. In this episode, I share from my own struggle with pain and offer hope to rise on the other side softer and stronger. 

Anna's blog: www.justajesusfollower.com

Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/annadimmel

The Bible and Homosexuality - how I became affirming

The Bible and Homosexuality - how I became affirming

June 15, 2019

After writing a recent blog on my journey of becoming affirming, I received a lot of questions like, "How can you be affirming when the Bible is so clear?" I decided a podcast would be the best way to address this subject in its entirety. I share how I walked through friends and family coming out to me, which began my journey of wrestling with theology. Covering the famous passages in scripture that address homosexuality, I break down historical context and translations. I discuss Old Testament, New Testament, Jesus and the spirit of the law vs. the legalism of it. All in all, this is one pastor's story of how I went from "the Bible is so clear" to becoming an affirming ally of the LGBTQ community. 

 

Anna's blog: www.justajesusfollower.com

Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/annadimmel

 

References for further reading:

Rev. Justin Cannon: https://www.gaychurch.org/homosexuality-and-the-bible/the-bible-christianity-and-homosexuality/

Unclobber, by Cloby Martin: https://www.amazon.com/UnClobber-Rethinking-Misuse-Bible-Homosexuality/dp/066426221X/ref=asc_df_066426221X/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=241916856624&hvpos=1o1&hvnetw=g&hvrand=8181018920231809618&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9023909&hvtargid=pla-492931928530&psc=1

Harbor, BT Harmon: https://www.harborhere.com/ 

30 Religions before turning 30 - with Reba Riley

30 Religions before turning 30 - with Reba Riley

June 9, 2019

I invite the author of, Post-Traumatic Church Syndrome Reba Riley to chat with me about her spiritual quest of experiencing thirty religions before her thirtieth birthday. As a former self-described Evangelical poster child, her journey defied nearly every barrier she had between herself, others and God. 

Reba shares how her beliefs about God shifted, as well as how she was received (eh, not so received) by her "Christian" friends. Reba gets honest and real as she describes the breaking point in her faith and betrayal from her community. Our conversation is full of wit, humor and honest raw transparency as we talk about ALL the things.  

Reba Riley: http://www.rebariley.com/

Anna's blog: www.justajesusfollower.com

Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/annadimmel 

Thoughts on Paul’s conversion - leaving religion and embracing love

Thoughts on Paul’s conversion - leaving religion and embracing love

June 1, 2019

The idea of "conversion" typically sparks thoughts of salvation experiences or of exchanging an old life for a new one. But, when I read the story of Paul's conversion now, I can't help but see it through a different lens. The story of Paul's conversion is one of trading hate for acceptance, murder for protection and anger for love. It is the story of one human's encounter with the Divine and how it completely wrecked his religious agenda. 

Anna's blog: www.justajesusfollower.com

Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/annadimmel

 

When life gets hard - finding light in the dark

When life gets hard - finding light in the dark

May 19, 2019

With recent events including the loss of Rachel Held Evans and the legal case my family has been involved in, I have felt overwhelmed by dark. Where is God in any of it? How can I even say that "God is in control" or that God is even good? In this episode, I peel back the layers of my thoughts and questions and share where I believe God is - and where my faith manages to rest inside of tragedy. No matter what heavy situations you are carrying, I promise that God is not behind the pain, loss, abuse or trauma. God is light, not dark. God is life, not death. God is safety, not fear. And where there is darkness, there is always light; today, we choose to chase after light.

Anna's blog: www.justajesusfollower.com

Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/annadimmel

What do I do now? Finding purpose outside of religion

What do I do now? Finding purpose outside of religion

April 29, 2019

For most of my life, I chased after my "calling". Believing my purpose was to minister, be a pastor and evangelize was what I thought I was supposed to be about. After all, isn't that the Jesus way? But, after having much of my "callings" stripped away, I realized one's purpose must go deeper.

Having taken another look at Jesus, I realized that to follow his life meant letting go of preconceived ideas of a "calling" or purpose. It asks you to look inward and discover what is really inside and what you are to do with that sacred gift.

Anna's blog: www.justajesusfollower.com

Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/annadimmel