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About the Episode

How do you know what your soul needs to rest? Is it having alone time? Is it taking a walk in nature? Is it meeting with a friend over coffee? My guest today, Jenn Whitmer, suggests three ways of resting, Stillness, Silence, and Solitude, and how we can evaluate which one we might need more of in our Sabbath practices. 

 

​​​​​​​About My Guest
Jenn Whitmer helps teams and leaders solve conflict and personality clashes. She speaks, writes, and coaches about hard topics with infectious joy. Through working with Jenn, people improve communication, work through conflict, and build self-awareness with the Enneagram. She asks big questions that lead to big dreams and big ideas and big living. Usually, that means laughing.

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Rachel: [00:00:00] you’re listening to episode 17 of the Simply Sabbath podcast.

Rest doesn’t have to be a four-letter word. If you feel like you’re about to break from exhaustion. Let me invite you to Simply Sabbath, a podcast for the burnt-out Christian mom, who longs to get back to the core of who she is and to reclaim the deep joy and stabilizing peace Jesus has for her in her every day– without the mom guilt that often accompanies self-care practices.

Hi, my name is Rachel Fahrenbach and I help busy moms just like you add a simple restful family Sabbath to their week. So they can experience a refueling that gives them exactly what they need to live the life that God has called them to. I’m so glad you’ve joined me today. Let’s get to it.

Welcome! Today, I’m super excited to [00:01:00] be talking with my friend, Jen Whitmer. I met Jen through an online writing community called hope*writers. I invited her here today to talk with us about how our personalities impact our worship. I think this is going to be a fun and very insightful conversation.

So thanks for being here, Jenn. I really appreciate.

Jenn: Oh, I’m so glad to be here. Thanks for having me.

Rachel: So before we get into our conversation, I want to tell you guys a little bit more about Jenn. Okay. Um, Jenn helps teams and leaders solve conflict and personality clashes. She speaks, writes, and coaches about hard topics with infectious joy. And I can attest to this because I follow her on Instagram and I love everything she does. Um, she is very, a very joyful person in what she writes.

She asked big questions that lead to big dreams and big ideas and big loving. Usually that means laughing. Specializing in interpersonal conflict resolution, leadership, and the Enneagram, Jenn helps others communicate through difficulties so they can do powerful and [00:02:00] connected work. Jen has graduate certificates in music, education, theology, and leadership. Along with a master of arts in communication and culture from Webster university. And she is certified as an Enneagram coach. She lives in St. Louis, Missouri with her husband, Michael, and their four kids and a cat that puts up with all of them. I love that. Jenn, I personally love following you on Instagram. And I have learned a lot about how my personality affects the way I communicate and how it impacts the way I navigate conflict. And today I would love to get a little deeper into how our, how knowing our personalities can deeper our worship experiences and how we can engage deeper in spiritual disciplines like Sabbath.

So there are a ton of personality tools out there such as Meyer Briggs, Emotional Intelligence, DISC assessment, StrengthFinders, but you actually, um, are certified in the Enneagram tool. And I know not everybody has heard of [00:03:00] heard of the Enneagram yet. So would you mind, um, giving us kind of like a brief overview of it.

Jenn: Absolutely. So first of all, I do love all those personality tools. Um, I used to use StrengthsFinders and I use Myers-Briggs when I was a faculty leader. So they have so much value. What I have discovered is the Enneagram really supports all of that and gives us the most opportunity to do something about the knowledge that we get.

So that’s what I love about the Enneagram. So if you’re still like, okay, so any, what, what is this thing? The Enneagram is a personality framework that shows us how we see the world. And it gives us the deep why behind our behaviors. StrengthsFinders disc Myers-Briggs are great. They show us how we do things. They show us what we do. The Enneagram shows us why we do those things. Like what is the motivation behind our thoughts, our feelings, and our behavior. And that’s what makes it a little bit different. And it’s about deep core fears. And desires that we all have. [00:04:00] And the way I like to describe it is we all have all the motivations of the Enneagram, but one of them is driving your bus.

And when we figure out which one’s driving the bus, then we can figure out what to do about it and make different choices that meet what we need with our specific bus driver.

Rachel: That’s a really great way. I haven’t heard it described like that, but, I think that sums it up really, really nicely. So can we talk a little bit about how our personalities specifically like our fears and desires, impact how we engage in different spiritual practices?

Jenn: Absolutely. So there are nine types on the Enneagram and there are lots and lots of spiritual practices and we all benefit from all of the spiritual practices. So just saying that really clearly upfront. And there are some spiritual practices that fit [00:05:00] really well with the needs of different Enneagram types. Part of the problem is it’s also the thing we want to avoid the most. And that’s where we kind of struggle a little bit. So when I described the Enneagram and this is a podcast, if you’re watching, if you’re listening to the audio version, you can’t see my hands, but it’s like a circle.

It’s like a clock. And so nine is at the top of the clock. And if I start describing the types with eight, um, eight is in like the 11 o’clock position. And the reason I start with the eights, well, there’s lots of reasons. One of them is because I feel like they get a bad rap, but also they’re beginning of what’s called the body center inside of the Enneagram.

So there are three centers of intelligence. There’s the gut center that body center our action oriented mind. There is the heart center, which is our feelings and our emotions and our relationships and decision-making, and then there’s the, the head center, which is our task orientation, our strategy or time management, all of those types of things.

[00:06:00] And so the eights begin the body center and so that’s, let’s start with them.

Rachel: Okay.

Jenn: So for Enneagram 8s um, they are really the protectors of the Enneagram and they’re afraid of what happens if I am betrayed or unprotected. And nines also in the body center are afraid of conflict, afraid of conflict itself of losing connection intention, but also not having their voice heard.

So they have a lot. Conflict in and of themselves, which is also their deepest fear. And then Enneagram ones in the body center are afraid of what does it mean if I’m not good? What if I’m not good and right. All the way through. And they have this really strong internal critic telling them that they’re not good and right all the way through. Which is really frustrating for the ones. Um, so that’s the body center. And so the spiritual practices that I like to talk about are silence, stillness, and solitude. There are again, [00:07:00] all kinds of spiritual practices, but those three are the ones that I think connect the most with the Enneagram.

And for the body center stillness is this spiritual practice that is the one that changes them the most. They benefit from silence. They benefit from solitude, but there is something about stillness that slows and changes the heart of these Enneagram types. And what I mean by stillness. I, it doesn’t necessarily mean you’re not moving, but it is the practice of just being. So the practice of, I don’t have to perform. I don’t have to um, present. I don’t have to protect. I don’t have to withdraw. I just am being.

And for 8s they really have to consent to the stillness, that all those problems that get all whipped up and, and it’s this idea of laying it down and so stillness lets them rest [00:08:00] from solving all the problems for short amounts of time.

And the, for Enneagram nines, they need to engage in stillness intentionally, because the thing about 9s is nobody can numb out like a nine they’re like Netflix with my blanket here I am. That’s not stillness, that’s numbing. And so really in being intentionally engaged in the stillness of centering on their inner world, because they struggle with that what do I want? Because if I say what I want, that I might be in conflict. So when they engage in stillness, they really stuck the calm, the fear of using their own voice and also recharging from just the demands of others. And that’s really important practice for nines.

And then for Enneagram 1s really resting in stillness. Like stop perfecting. Stop fixing. Stop reforming. Stop reforming yourself, stop reforming others, the world… like just resting in the stillness that [00:09:00] allows them to embrace the serenity that the world’s not going to stop if you aren’t making it right for just a little bit. And so that is the stillness for that body center.

And then we have like this idea of just starting small. So for that body center, just outside is great for all of them. Even in the cold. If you live in cold places, like get a cup of coffee and sit on your deck, sit in a chair away from the chaos of your home. Um, busy moms. I know that those little fingers appear through the door of the bathroom. I get it. But if you can train yourself for five minutes and train your kids to I’m going to go be away for five minutes. It’s 300 seconds. To care for your own soul and wholeness. It’s really, really powerful. If you want to level up, take an affirmation, a scripture, prayer beads, and just [00:10:00] meditate on the gifts of the spirit, meditate on a scripture, something like that, that engages you in the stillness and the rest and the consenting to this stillness. And then work up for longer, but just small pieces to get you started.

Rachel: I love that. I particularly liked what you’re saying about, there’s a difference between stillness and numbness and like numbing yourself that what we’re working towards is not a numbing or a withdrawal from the world we’re engaging in the world in a way that’s um, restful and recharging. And so I really liked that. So, um, so these are for eight, nine and one, the they’re the body types. And you mentioned being outside. And are you suggesting, like being still in nature or are you suggesting like even going for a walk in nature?

Jenn: I think that for this group, stillness doesn’t necessarily mean physical [00:11:00] stillness. It’s that idea of I’m just being–

Rachel: So, more of a stillness of the voices around us. Like still in that like silencing the input that’s coming in towards us.

Jenn: Yeah. Sometimes. And this is why I think is especially for busy moms, because when you sit down on the couch, you still see that basket of laundry, you still have the kids running around you, you still like, you still see all those things. So there’s something about outside that you have to practice if you’re in your own yard and then you don’t have to pick it up. But especially if at a park that’s not your responsibility, outside in nature, there is something that is really powerful about that. That allows you to just be. Yeah, that allows the quietness of the stillness of the voices in the room. All of the things.

Rachel: I love this idea for, um, the, those who are listening, who are 8s, 9s, and 1s during their Sabbath practice, you know, I talk a lot about setting aside a day, like scheduling it on your calendar. And if you can’t do a full [00:12:00] day, like taking a chunk of time, um, but making part of your practice, something that is relaxing according to your personality. And so I love if we were to approach it this way and say, okay, during our Sabbath practice, I need a part that’s going to be restful in a way that meets my personality. And so for those 8s, 9s, and 1s they could do something like, all right, hun, I’m going to go walk at the park for an hour. You are the primary response parent and you are on with the kids and I’m going to go do that and just quiet the noise and quiet the demands and just be for an hour. I’d love that idea. So do you have, let’s talk about the other ones.

Jenn: Okay. So now we’re going to move to the heart center. And so we’re going to start with Enneagram twos and Enneagram twos are really responding to this idea of rejection. So I want to help people in order to be needed. So you won’t reject me.

That’s the struggle of the [00:13:00] two and the Enneagram threes have this idea that their worth and their value, their validity as a human is in their achievements and what they accomplish. And then Enneagram fours really desperately want to be seen. They want to be seen as unique and that their validation comes from having, being special and unlike everybody else. And so for this group, solitude is really important spiritual practice because all of this group really deals with shame and that always has to do with the response of someone else. So removing themselves from somebody else and removing themselves from the presence of others to be with just themselves is really valuable. And so for Enneagram twos, they really have to consent to solitude because they’re always understanding the needs and emotions of other people. And [00:14:00] solitude helps them separate their identity from other people and find humility away from others because twos often know what other people need. And so they jump in and help other people when they intentionally consent to being alone, they find that I don’t have to solve everybody else’s problems in order to have value and worth.

And so for threes, what I always suggest for threes as to really engage in solitude, because they’re already active anyway, but three spent so much time as a chameleon and like what other people think and want from them? What’s authentic to just them can be really hard to find. And so when they separate from others and intentionally practice solitude, then they start to discover who, who am I. And what does my want desire and worth outside of the accolade, the achievement, the goals, all of that. And so the solitude [00:15:00] takes them out of the, the arena of other’s eye so they can be just themselves.

And then fours, fours get to rest in solitude and they’re not emotionally isolated from God. They, they don’t want to be emotionally isolated and they want to be seen. God sees you. And when you remove yourself, this is the place to be seen. And then you can start to see yourself through the lens of how God sees you and away from others fours can really develop that, that equanimity and, and self possession that they’re always looking for. And what I mean by equanimity is um —

Rachel: yeah, that’s a big word, please define it.

Jenn: A big word. And what that really is about is not thrown by the the, the mountains and the valleys of emotion, but really I am in charge of my emotions and I get to care for [00:16:00] myself. I’m not thrown by the whims of whatever my emotional responses are… still have them emotional responses, but I’m not controlled by them. And that is what equanimity is about.

Rachel: I, I have been trying to explain that for a long time. I’m not a four, but I have found that, um, because I’m a creative, I tend to lean towards that four-ness type thing, but, um, What I found through the practice of Sabbath is I call it a stabilizing piece. And it’s exactly what you’re talking about. Like, I don’t feel like I swing as so drastically between the two or like the different emotions that I’m feeling. I don’t feel like I’m carried away by them as much. I feel like there’s been a stabilizing piece that has come into my life. So I love this so much, cause I’m like, there’s a word for it.

Jenn: There it is. Yeah, absolutely. And so for this group, you know, everybody gets just [00:17:00] like the body group kind of doing their own thing, but a general, um, rule is, or a general practice would be to remove yourself from others. And really 15 to 30 minutes on a daily basis would be amazing. But in Sabbath, that idea of how can I intentionally, spend time alone? And tell your people, right? That’s what I’m doing. And it’s a great modeling for kids. But it, you do not have to be with people all the time. For the extroverts, they need to learn that. For the introverts, they need to be valued for that. And so it’s that, it’s a great practice. And you can go for a walk. You can take a drive. Threes in particular, I’ve heard really like float tanks because they’re not even having to please um, anybody like, it’s just that deprivation. For me, that sounds like–

Rachel: Terrifying?

Jenn: Claustrophobic… yeah I don’t think I could do it. But really schedule it. It is really important for this group to [00:18:00] schedule it. I think everybody does well by scheduling it, but there is something huge for two threes and fours to schedule solitude. Cause fours will just kind of withdraw and float away. Threes will just go on with the next thing to do. And twos will go find somebody to help. If they don’t schedule it and take it, take their time. So going for a walk, taking a drive, even going to a movie by yourself is something that can create that intentional withdrawal from people.

Rachel: And I, I think I want to note here too, that when we’re talking specifically within the context of Sabbath and we’re taking like a 24 hour break, that 24 hours doesn’t have to be in solitude, it can just be a small portion of that. Like, it doesn’t have to be the full time. In fact, I probably wouldn’t suggest it not be the full time, because I think there’s something about worshiping and community or engaging in Sabbath as in a community. But I do think that if you are one of you know, it’s two, three [00:19:00] or four, that this is a very, I’m thinking of people that I know who identify with those numbers, um, and they say that one of their most favorite parts of Sabbath is getting to go for a run by themselves or getting to go, just be alone with journaling and something like that. So I think it’s really interesting that you’ve mentioned like, oh yeah, they have mentioned that to me in. And now that makes sense that when you constantly feel like you have to respond to those around you in whatever way, if it’s helping or performing, or even being aware of the world around you and feeling like you’re comparing yourself to that, to get away from, it reminds you of who you are uniquely designed to be, and it reminds you of how God values you as an individual. And so it’s very, very important. And I think that’s really, really, really wise to emphasize the [00:20:00] scheduling of the getting away, even within your Sabbath practice.

Jenn: Absolutely. Absolutely. Um, and I think communicating it, tell your people again, like it’s not because. It’s not rejection. It is care and, and clarifying that. It’s like, I’m going to go take care of myself over here. And I think particularly when we have young kids, kids are self-centered. I mean, we just are, I mean, people are, but kids are particularly good to make everything about themselves. So again, over communicate, this is me caring for myself and that’s

Rachel: Just to, just to emphasize this point because it’s so, so, so like my like soapbox, like moms, if you are not showing your kids how to rest, who are they going to learn it from? The world is not teaching them. The world is telling them to run and hustle and hurry. If you are not demonstrating it to them, they will [00:21:00] not learn it. And we are going to raise another generation of burnt-out adults. So it is so vital if not just only for yourselves to rest, but it’s also vital for your children for their future. So if any of them do it for the kids?

Jenn: Absolutely. So you, we model things, teach by modeling and we teach didactically. Telling them the thing. And so when those two are aligned, because that’s really important that your words line up when those two are aligned, they start, they learn and they start to see that. And it’s really powerful. It’s really powerful. So true. So the next group–

Rachel: I was gonna say, are we readyto move on? I’m interested because I’m in this group.

Jenn: Okay.Me too. The next group is the head center folks and our head center, um, they all are really struggling a lot with fear. This comes back to fear a lot for them. So the body center was [00:22:00] anger and motion and, and shame for the headset for the heart center. And the head center is dealing with fear in some way. And so the fives deal with their fears by thinking, because they don’t want to be ignorant. That’s what keeps them safe is to know. And so their deep knowledge and researching all the things. And then sixes–

Rachel: All the things.

Jenn: All the things and Enneagram sixes are really wanting to be prepared. And so they are preparing so they don’t get blamed or emotionally or physically abandoned. And, um, That’s what keeps them safe.

And then Enneagram sevens are planning because they don’t want to experience the pain. So they’re going to do all this kind of planning that is whatever is fun and next and all of that. So they don’t experience pain. So that’s how Enneagram sevens move off of experiencing pain, they plan so they don’t have to, and whatever the next fun thing [00:23:00] is to fill them up. And so for this group, dealing with their fear of fear and their fear of security is to practice silence. This group spends so much time getting information. It’s like input, input input from thesis to the latest album drop to the expect concert. There is no room with all of the input for knowing who they are as themselves. And so for me, defining silence as a spiritual practice is quieting the generated sound. Cause if you go out into the forest, I mean it’s loud, there’s animal bugs and it’s, so it’s not just. All sound. It’s not like a, a tank, you know, although I take it tanks work, but it’s the generated sound that we create.

It’s like ceasing of the input. And [00:24:00] so for fives, that is this consent to silence and particularly the mystery of silence, to the mystery of not knowing. That is really hard for fives. As a spiritual practice it’s consenting to, I am never going to get to the depths to the understanding of the creator of the world.

He’s always going to know more and consenting to that mystery and silence gives your constant trying to figure it out-ness a rest.

Rachel: It’s almost like being okay with the gray and not knowing, not necessarily needing it to all be all black and white. That’s a really hard spot to be in.

Jenn: Yes. And it’s not even it’s that, but also not having to even know that, which is really scary that they can practice this non-attachment from knowledge and be comfortable in the world as [00:25:00] it is, and that is kind and loving to themselves.

And then for Enneagram sixes, they really have to engage in the silence. Sixes spend a lot of time preparing to avoid the silence. And so when Sixes engage in silence, they start to recognize that their anxieties come up but they also have the courage to deal with them because what happens is I’m trying to get all this input. So I don’t have that anxiety come up, rather than allowing it to surface and then coping with it, with whatever it is. So in the silence, sixes start to see that their brave enough to face what comes and really release control of the outcome, which is really where six has get tied up.

Rachel: Yes.

Jenn: And so–

Rachel: Yes. Witness.

Jenn: Like, if I could prepare all the things, this is the outcome. And [00:26:00] so the practice of silence, let’s all those fears kind of come up, which is really scary. But then, you start to deal with them. And as a, again, as a spiritual practice, giving them to God and letting him calm your fears and being able to cast all your cares and anxiety upon him, all of those things. That’s what happens in silence rather than the distraction of what else is happening around you. That other input that you get?

Rachel: Yes. So part of my Sabbath practice is a hour reflective time where I am just sitting, not reading any scripture. I’m not listening to any music. I’m not doing anything that is input and or planning. I’m just sitting there and praying. Lord, let me see what this week was like through your eyes instead of mine. And it has been…. [00:27:00] just like, you’re talking like a releasing of control in that hour. I have no, no plan for that hour. I don’t know where God’s going to take me. And it’s just a practice of just allowing him to be the one leading the conversation instead of me driving it, because I can be with that planner mentality in that, that, um, that, uh, always wanted to be prepared for everything. I can be the one driving things a lot. Um, I’m always saying like, unless I’m planning it, it’s not happening. Um, but you know, so I can oftentimes be the one driving it and I have found that, that time of reflection where there’s just silence and there’s no input coming in and there’s no expectation of outcome that it has been the most life-giving practice to me in the last couple of years.

And so I, I resonate with what you’re [00:28:00] saying because it, it really truly has been a releasing of control and just allowing my Creator to, to guide me instead of me being the one to drive it.

Jenn: Yeah. Yeah. It’s so. So powerful. And I love the word freeing because what is happening often as sixes or sixes are not control freaks, but they’re preparing to make sure the bad things don’t happen.

Rachel: Exactly.

Jenn: And so it just relaxes that and lifts that weight, that sixes carry so much.

Rachel: And I think too, like we can often times be like forward, like forward thinking, like we’re always, because we’re like anticipating the next move in order to be prepared for the next move that sometimes we have, we struggle with being present in the moment. And I think this idea of silence, like you can’t prepare for the next moment you have to be in the moment. And that’s a really hard [00:29:00] thing to train yourself to be. By practicing this week after week that I noticed that when tough situations come up, I’m not jumping to immediately, or if I jump, I can pull myself back and be like, just stay in the moment. Don’t panic about the next. And so it has been very good. It’s like translated in all areas of my life.

Jenn: Absolutely. And that is the power of, I mean, working up to an hour on a Sabbath is amazing, but giving yourself that silence throughout the week

Rachel: Yeah, that’s after three years of doing it.

Jenn: Really powerful, which I’ll talk about in a second about some ideas about that, but that it is, it just, it, it buoys you in a way that you can’t… it’s not an on-off switch. It’s…

Rachel: Right.

Jenn: It’s an, a dimmer that just comes up. And you can’t, it’s not instant, but that’s what Sabbath, Sabbath isn’t instant.

Rachel: No, it’s not, it’s a practice. [00:30:00] We call it a practice because you just keep trying week after week. It’s not going to be perfect either. It’s it’s moving, it’s progress forward, not perfectionism.

Jenn: Absolutely. Absolutely. So our last Enneagram number.

Rachel: I was going to say, let’s not forget the sevens!

Jenn: I know we can’t forget the sevens. We have them last for lots of reasons. That’s just who we are sevens. So for sevens, really what sevens get to do is rest in the silence. All the ideas, all the chatter, all the what’s next, gets to start to ease. And that silence allows an emptying of the anxieties that they’ve been avoiding by filling up with all the other things.

And so it’s really the ability to be present. Like what you were just talking about. Sevens are always in the future. And pulling them back to the present is where that the way to be joyfully sober-minded in the, [00:31:00] in the presence. And that is really the gift for a seven. And that idea of if I don’t have something happening all the time, then I have to think about what I don’t want to think about. And so avoiding it just causes more, you know, pay no attention to the man behind the curtain know, like avoiding it, doesn’t help. And so the silence allows it to be emptied and that’s really, really powerful for sevens. And so for this group, for the five sixes and sevens, being able to deal with the security issue with silence is so rather than filling your space with stimulation and sound, just turn a few things off. Turn off the car radio, turn off the shower speaker, turn off the hum of the TV, the radio, Spotify podcast, clubhouse. You do all the things that y’all have going on in the background and just turn them off. That can just be the first step. Just practicing silence [00:32:00] throughout the day on the car ride home. Especially if you’ve dropped the kids off at school and it’s like, you know, the 10 minute drive home, turn off the radio, which is like, no, that’s my time!

Rachel: I know, right?

Jenn: I totally get it.

Rachel: It’s funny that you mentioned the car radio example because I was in a Bible study. Heck like, I don’t even want to say how long ago it is because it makes me sad. Um, but it was so long ago I was young brand new out of college. And I was in this Bible study on the book of Daniel and they were talking about fasting. So they said they wanted us to practice fasting and I decided to fast from listening to the radio on my drive to and from Bible study because it was a half an hour drive. And actually, I think I made it just no radio at all, because I was noticing that when I got into those moments where it was just me and I got into those moments where I was alone, [00:33:00] that I was filling the noise. Like I couldn’t stand the silence. So I was starting to fill it. I would always turn on the radio, always had my headphones in and, um, So I decided to do that. And I think it was for the length of the Bible study. So, like a significant amount of time. And I was astonished by what that did for me to, to not like run from my thoughts or run from my fears and not to like, get so caught up in it. It was literally just not listening to the radio in the car. Was all, it took that 30 minutes driving in silence to allow me to be okay with processing. And I think that’s a really important thing. I don’t think we realize how much input we have in general with our media and our stream. Like it used to be, you went and saw a movie with friends. You would talk about it afterwards [00:34:00] and it might be like another week before you went and saw another movie. And now we can watch movie after movie, after movie, and we’re not talking about it. We’re not processing it. We’re just having this constant stream of news and media and, um, other people’s lives, even in other people’s opinions too just constantly hitting us. And if we don’t allow time, and I think that is true for anybody it doesn’t matter what your Enneagram number is, but if you don’t allow time to process and to think critically about what you’re, what you’re consuming. To not be so passive in the consumption. You might not realize the world view that is coming at you.

You might be naturally more of an upbeat person and then not realizing like, why am I feeling so down all the time? Well, you might, it might be the media that you’re consuming. You just might be hearing one negative thing after the other and not realizing how that’s affecting you. And so I think it’s really important that we create these moments [00:35:00] of silence and stillness and solitude to give ourselves time, to process everything that’s coming at us in the world, and then not be afraid of that to not be afraid to be alone with our thoughts and with our God.

Jenn: Absolutely. Absolutely. And I think we have this fOMO in some ways, like if I don’t know about it, particularly for this head center group, but I think this applies to everybody ,that is really a frustrated ambition at omniscience. That’s not ours to carry. I don’t have to know all the things I don’t have to be omnipotent.

I don’t have to have all power and sitting in silence, stillness or solitude lets me release that frustrated ambition. And like you said, sit, sit with my thoughts, sit with my God, and be human. And connect with our creator. [00:36:00] And John Eldridge has that pause app that I adore–

Rachel: Love it. I love it too.

Jenn: I love that. And um, I mean, I have his voice in my head, restore my union with you. Like that’s our goal. And everything else comes back to that of union with, with our creator. That we were made for relationship. And these are the ways we maintain healthy relationships with ourselves, with our God, with others.

And if you were listening to this and you’re like, I still don’t know what my Enneagram number is. That’s fine, but I bet one of these. You were like, oh no, I’m not doing that. I would pay attention to that one. That means something.

Rachel: I agree. Uh, I know because there have been times where I’m like, you want me to be by myself? You are you crazy? I’ve even said, this I’ve even said this before. Like, I don’t want to spend. It goes back to that idea of like your 24 hour Sabbath or [00:37:00] however long your Sabbath is, it, it does not have to look only one way the entire time. It should be varied. It should like. If you look at the different traditions, um, in the Jewish faith of how they practice Sabbath, it’s not the same thing throughout the whole 24 hours. And I think that’s true for our Sabbath as well. It can have bits and pieces. And so that’s why I talk about the five R’s and, um, you can check out my resources on that, but part of the five Rs is one is reconnection with God and others. And the other is to relax in ways that are true to how you are designed. And I think that’s what we’re talking about here. That even if you schedule just a small amount of time within your bigger Sabbath practice, you are going to find a refueling, a return to your whole self that is so vital and important in your walk with the Lord and with living out the life that he’s called you.

Jenn: Absolutely. Absolutely. [00:38:00]

Rachel: So Jenn for somebody who wants to explore the Enneagram tool more and go a little bit more in depth, where should they start?

Jenn: Yes. So I would love to connect with you and the best place to find me is https://jennwhitmer.com/. So there, I’ve got a resource called why do I keep doing this? Which has all the rest of the core motivations. We really just like did the thumbnail version and to get to the soul care practices. So it goes through all the core motivations there. There’s 5 motivations for each of the nine types. And so what does that look like for you? That’s a great place to start and I would love to connect with you on Instagram and LinkedIn. That’s where I play the most. And you can just keep getting more information and, and then reflecting on that information about how does it apply to you? The Enneagram is not a it’s not a test. It’s not a, one-stop like, oh, now I know. It is a wisdom tool that is a [00:39:00] journey in an application and oh, that’s how that is showing up for me. And, and here’s what I can then do about it. It’s a process in that way. So —

Rachel: I think you would agree with me that just like with any tool, like we take, we take the tool, we use it to gain some insight, but then we bring it before our God and say, is this good? Am I right here or not?

Jenn: Absolutely.

Rachel: Lord show me the truth. And so I think that, that, you know, I just want to make sure to make that point that this is, this tool is not going to tell you everything about yourself.

It is a starting point in kind of like a, a little bit of peeling back the onion and a good place to start with. Okay, Lord. So I think that this is true about myself, am I on the right track? Holy spirit lead me in that. So I think that’s important to note.

Jenn: It’s like a really amazing power drill. Yes. Like you can do a lot with a power drill. There’s all kinds of bits. There’s all kinds of things that you can do with a power drill, but you cannot build an entire house with just a power drill.

Rachel: [00:40:00] Exactly.

Jenn: You’re going to build a better house with a power drill, but you can’t put the whole thing with just that. And so it’s such a powerful tool, but it is not the only tool and on its own, it can’t do all the things. One of the things I talk about the most is conflict resolution in the Enneagram. And so if I only told you how you showed up, you know, based on the Enneagram and conflict, but never gave you any tools to solving it. That wouldn’t be very helpful.

And so there’s, there’s so much more to it. And as we talk about soul care and Sabbath, that’s, the practices are silence, stillness and solitude. It’s figuring out which one helps your bus driver be the most whole.

Rachel: I’m so glad that you put it that way. Cause it’s something that I’ve struggled to explain to people and I’m like, you have to rest in ways that are, that meet your personality. Like what you, what I need is not necessarily what you need. And I’ve never really been able to communicate some, um, practical ways in which they could rest, that would look different from [00:41:00] others. And so I love this idea of stillness, solitude, and silence, being a jumping off point for like, Hey, if you struggle with this, why don’t you try this? And this might give you what you need for rest. I love that idea. So I’m really excited for our listeners to try the things and to, to really start to understand themselves. Um, and it’s a practice, right? So the more you try it out, like you might try out all three of them. I mean, honestly, you could do all three of them. Right. But as you try it, you can ask yourself after you’ve done that practice, you can ask yourself, okay, how did that go? Let’s take a soul inventory. Does my soul feel at peace after this? Does it feel refueled? Does it feel recharged or does it feel even more drained, let’s take an inventory of it after each time we do these practices and I think that’s a good idea just in general with life, kind of do it like a debrief, with yourself after you have this practice. And then maybe the [00:42:00] next week, try something different until you find something that you’re like, that was it that allowed me to reconnect with God. That allowed me to rest physically, emotionally, spiritually. And it allowed me to reconnect in ways with the world that I need to. Once you find that you can keep practicing and you know, it might be different seasons need different things too.

Jenn: And often I find the thing that I avoid the most is the thing that I need the most.

Rachel: Yes.

Jenn: And, uh, um, and so I just want to encourage people to keep trying it Suzanne Stabile says something, I’m going to mess up her quote, but I just want to give her credit, um, that practices like this contemplated practices, Sabbath, soul care practices, um, They’re not a quick fix, but you find that you do life better when you’re doing them.

Rachel: Yes. Yes. Amen. Alright on that note. I, I could just keep talking to you about forever [00:43:00] and a day. It has been so good. It has been so insightful. Um, I, I really appreciate you coming on here and being, just speaking so clearly onto what are some of our fears? How can we engage that in a way that is restful? How can we utilize stillness and and solitude and silence in our Sabbath practice? I just, I loved it, the whole conversation. So thank you so much for coming on to the podcast today, I would love to close our time out in prayer. Would you be okay with that?

Jenn: Absolutely.

Rachel: All right, father, God, thank you so much for Jenn. Thank you for her wisdom. Thank you for her. Uh, the way that she just clearly explained things today, uh, I really truly believe that this will be a benefit to those listening. To just maybe have a moment where they say, oh, that I resonate with that. Maybe I need to try this during my Sabbath practice and in doing so they can [00:44:00] draw closer to you. They can rest in ways that are more in tune with the way that you have designed them, so that they can live fully into that design, Lord. I pray that you would just bless our listeners today. We pray that they would be able to take from this conversation what is useful and beneficial to them and not get hung up on the details, but just find an encouragement to try different things, an encouragement, to not run from knowing who they are. You know, sometimes that can be a really scary thought to get to know ourselves better Lord, but I just pray for encouragement and courage to explore that with you and to get to know themselves better with you guiding them in that exploration. And Lord, I just ask blessings on Jenn and the work that she is doing, Lord, I pray that you just continue to give her [00:45:00] wisdom to share with others. I pray that you’ll continue to, um, show her how to lead. And Lord, I just thank you for the work that she’s doing and please bless it. And Lord, I just ask a blessing on all those listening, lord, may we find rest this week with you. May we remember that you have given us permission to rest, that you have given us a plan to do it, that you have uniquely designed us to be in communion with you, and you want to communion with us. You want to be resting with us. And engaging with us in these practices of worship really is what it is. And Lord, I just pray that you would bless our time with you this week and that you would give us courage to pursue and engage with you. Thank you so much. For all that you have given us in your precious and holy name. I pray. Amen.

Jenn: Thank you.

Rachel: [00:46:00] Well, thank you. Thank you for joining me today. I really, really appreciate it. And thank you for listening in to today’s episode. We’ll meet back here next week as we continue the conversation of what it looks like to Sabbath in today’s hurried culture. Bye.

 Hey, I just want to say thank you for joining me for today’s conversation. I know many things demand your attention. I don’t take lightly the privilege it is to share your time. I want to make things as easy and simple for you. So I’ve linked to all the resources mentioned in the episode in the show notes, and you can always find the link and more helpful information on my website, www.rachelfahrenbach.com.

As we say our goodbyes, let me remind you that what we’re talking about in this podcast is not just another thing to add to your to-do list. This is not another expectation for you to live up to. It is a gift out stretched from the hand of your creator. An invitation to press pause on [00:47:00] walking alongside Jesus in all the things He’s called you to do. And instead the down, across from Him and just be with Him.

It is an invitation to Simply Sabbath.

Resources

Why Do I Keep Doing This https://jennwhitmer.com/freebies 

The One Minute Pause App https://www.pauseapp.com/

Suzanne Stabile https://suzannestabile.com/

What Next?

Be sure to download Jenn’s free resource: Why Do I Keep Doing This?

Want to practice Sabbath but don’t know where to start? Let me help you: The Busy Mom’s Guide to a Simple Family Sabbath

 

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Hey! I'm Rachel and I'm so glad you're here today!
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Hey! I'm Rachel and I'm so glad you're here today!

I help busy moms add a simple, rest-filled family Sabbath to their week. If that sounds like something you want for your week, but don’t know where to start, grab this free how-to resource: The Busy Mom’s Guide to a Simple Family Sabbath.

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