A few months ago Longbrake IM’d me with a quote from The Velveteen Rabbit…
What is REAL?” asked the Rabbit one day, when they were lying side by side near the nursery fender, before Nana came to tidy the room. “Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?”
“Real isn’t how you are made,” said the Skin Horse. “It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.”
“Does it hurt?” asked the Rabbit.
“Sometimes,” said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. “When you are Real you don’t mind being hurt.”
“Does it happen all at once, like being wound up,” he asked, “or bit by bit?”
“It doesn’t happen all at once,” said the Skin Horse. “You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in your joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.”
I immediately thought of my new team and the vision that I cast for them in August at our SPD retreat.
Being real and authentic in our work means bringing our personal, messy selves to the front everyday.
That is a tough thing to do and explain. So when Josh sent me this quote I had to use it.
So I had Katie make magnets with the quote and bought my entire team the book and gave it to them today.
Being real means getting messy in our Christianity together and I feel my team is totally joining me on that journey. Because it is a journey.
And sometimes it takes 2nd grade stories to show us truth.
So if you’re sharp, break easily, or have to be carefully kept…
Take a lesson from the Skin Horse.
It’s better this way,