Picture"Crossroads" by K. Westendorp
How do you explain your personal truths? Do you feel you need to defend them? Prove them? I had the honor of hosting a group of women at my home yesterday and we talked about this topic and about what we know to be true. One group member spoke about how she views the topic of feeling you have to "prove" your beliefs to others and described it as trying to explain  the color red to someone who can't see it. Spirituality like colors is something each of us must experience and express for ourselves.  

So the next time you feel the urge to explain or defend your beliefs remember that not everyone can see the color red and not everyone will believe as you do.  And that's okay.  We each have our own path, our own journey, and our own spirituality. You do not need to defend yourself.

PictureTree of Life by K. Westendorp
Last night I met with my coach, Jennie Antolak.  She has been a constant support and light for me over the last 3 years. Teaching me the ins and outs of coaching, helping me realize and live my dreams, and giving me opportunities to coach and train others. 

Every time I meet with my coach, I feel energized. We spend 60 minutes or so talking about my accomplishments and goals, and afterwards I'm ready to take on the world! I feel a deeper connection to myself, my values, my spirit's path.

Coaching is about moving you from a place of chaos and uncertainty to place of action and purpose.  Your potential and dreams need a fertile place to be nurtured and coaching provides you with that safe place.





I'm having one of those weeks when I look back at my life and feel bits and pieces of the past pushing through.  That picture is of my Grandma Larson.  She raised my mom, was a foster mother to numerous children, and she was my best friend when I was a child.  Grandma had rules, she was a former school teacher, and for her life was meant to be an orderly and comfortable experience.  She cooked her hamburgers and potatoes in butter.  Dishes where done right after dinner and wiping down the counter was part of doing dishes.  There was an expectation with Grandma that everyone worked until there was no more work to do and then we all could rest.

My time spent with Grandma is sacred to me now. With her I learned so much about the balance between responsibility and relaxation and what it meant to love unconditionally.

I believe in love and that love is the one thing that lives on when we die.  Give love and accept love. Be there, set boundaries, show appreciation, give hugs and kisses. Let love comfort you and your memories.

Meet Axel, our adopted Shih Tzu who was raised in a puppy mill.  Axel is proof of the power of love to heal old hurts.  When he came to us he was so scared of people he would hide behind the furniture when guests came over.  Now, after years of gentle and consistent care he greets guests and for a select few he will even ask for their attention by gingerly putting his front paws on their knees.

Perhaps like Axel you grew up in a place that wasn't safe and nurturing.  Or maybe you did, but you have fear around love and trust for other reasons.  I encourage you to find a safe place to practice how to find, recognize, and nurture love.  For those who are too hurt to work with people, start with animals. They will not betray you.

My work as a spiritual life coach and minister is to help you reach your potential in all areas of your life. To help you remove pain and barriers so you can realize the love and the life that is your destiny. I am honored to have this role in the world and I pledge to hold your story and your trust in a safe and nurturing place.

I've been drawing since I was a kid and I expect I will continue until my hand can't hold a pen.  This piece is called Blue Peace, after the soothing colors and the feelings that it invokes in me. Peace is a value of mine that I express in my art, coaching, and ministry. I believe in the power of peace, of being able to go inside oneself and calm the torrent of emotions, sounds, and visions that bombard us. I believe in being peaceful with others. Never let them dominate you, but still be caring and respectful with all who cross your path.

Peace, Love, Compassion, and Forgiveness are my core values. I speak those words everyday as reminder of what I am really about, who I am at my core. I speak the words to end my meditation routine, and at other times when I need to focus and be reminded of my spirit's path.

Peace is possible, for each of us because it is our natural state of being.

It is our desire to be safe that calls out for peace, and we have the power to make our lives and the world a peaceful place.

A couple of days ago my husband and I celebrated 3 years of marriage.  This is significant for us for many reasons, most of all because we are divorced.  Sounds funny, doesn't it?  We met in 1993, young and totally in love, we got married in 1998.  We didn't have the maturity to pull it off and were divorced by the Fall of 2001.  This anniversary matters because we have now been married longer this time around then the first time. And it's so much better.

I have learned a lot about persistence from our marriage.  If you really want something, you can make it happen.  It might be hard, it might all fall apart and for a while and it might feel like it can't happen. But if you persist, if you take the time to do the necessary work, you can make it.  I especially believe this about love.  Love binds us in ways we can't even begin to understand.  Love that is true and pure, that exists for the sake of caring and compassion will persist.  Thank you Jacob, for loving me and for your persistence in our relationship. 


    Rev. Karen Westendorp, M.Ed.

    Coach, Educator, and Minister specializing in creativity, change, and living a life that aligns with my Spirit's Path.


    August 2013
    July 2013