April BASU – Bekah Pogue

You guys!  It’s Spring, finally!  Although, as I sit down to type this post there is snow in the forecast for tomorrow.  Obviously, it is not very Spring-like here in mid-Missouri yet.

This month, I’m bringing a little sunshine into your life by introducing you to my sweet friend and Sister at Build A Sister Up, Bekah Pogue.  Bekah is just a complete joy to know.  She’s a total “take time to smell the roses” kind of gal!  Typing out her interview just put a smile on my face and I can’t wait for you to read her words and get to know her heart.

Bekah isn’t just cheery and fun, she’s also wise and reflective.  She is deep water and she’s the queen of Soul Care.  As soon as God laid the theme of Soul Care on my heart for April’s topic, I knew Bekah had to be the Sister to join us in this conversation.

I know you’re going to love her, so let’s just jump right into her interview!  I’m happy to introduce you to my friend, Bekah Pogue.

Can you tell us a little about yourself?
I hate talking about myself.  I’d much rather celebrate other people, but here goes.  I love life.  I love intentional conversations on the couch with like minded people.  I love getting to see into people’s stories and help them figure out what makes them feel alive and how they can go and live that way.  I love encouraging people.  I feel alive where there is green and space and wildflowers and country and people.  I get inspired by creativity and music and cooking and baking.

I’ve been married for almost 14 years.  We have two boys, Tanner and Ty.  Tanner is 9 and Ty is 7.  We have a little Shih Tzu named Bruiser.  We live in Springhill, TN.  We moved from California almost a year ago in sort of a trusting scared journey of stepping out of ministry and peeling back all of the uncomfortable layers and kind shaking up the status quo.  I like to shake up the status quo.

Coffee or tea?
Coffee, but if there is a Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf around, a tropical passion tea late please.  All the yeses.

Exercise or nap?
How about we do Pilates and then take a nap?

Cake or pie?
If it’s chocolate, cake.  My mom makes this fudge macaroon pie that I request every year on my birthday.  I can’t wait to turn a year older just to take a bite of that decadent pie.

High heels or sneakers?
Oh, my gosh.  Jeans and a tee shirt with sneakers all the way.  Preferably Sperry sneakers because I love me some boat shoes.

Vacation or staycation?
In the practical, realistic word, it has been staycation for me for a little bit just because of finances.   If you blow finances out of the water, take me to a tropical island, or a French countryside, or Seville, Spain, please.  I think I could be a professional vacationer because I thrive off of experiences.  When I go to a town, I want to find the yummiest foodie food and the cutest hole in the wall coffee shop.  I want to go on all the tours and talk with the local people and interview them for their stories.  I want to find the back-country road to the random candle shop and figure out how they make them.  I want to cozy up in all the fun places, so probably vacation.

Early riser or sleep in?
Sleep In.

Read the book or watch the movie?
Always read the book.  I will say that the only movie that I have ever seen that was comparable to the book was The Help.  Bless it all.

Dogs or cats?
Dogs.  My hubby is allergic to cats.  Ty wants a cat when we move and I said that he could get an outdoor cat if he makes my bed every day.

Introvert or extrovert?
I think I’m an ambivert.  I love people but then I definitely need my alone time to recharge.

Country living or city girl?
So, when I was younger, I would have said city.  I think that’s because of the way I was raised by my mom who loves the city, but now I crave country.  Give me a Sunday afternoon and backroads and barns and old-fashioneds and antique stores and the most interesting people and I am in Heaven.  Country.  Country.  Country.

Do you have any hobbies?
I love designing and decorating.  I’ve gotten to help some friends rearrange and redecorate to make their home more homey.  I love that.  I love antiquing.  I love making people feel loved.  Does writing count?

What are you listening to, reading, or watching that you are loving right now?
I love this question.  As far as podcasts, I kind of go in spurts where it’s all or nothing.  If I’m going to listen to a podcast, its probably Typology by Ian Cron which is about the Enneagram numbers, which I’m a huge fan of, or The Next Right Thing with Emily Freeman.

Music wise, I’m listening to anything that my boys are having dance parties to.  Right now, that is the greatest Showman and Sean Mendez.  I love Sandra McCracken. If you’ve never heard of her, she is like if Jewel ate a worship CD.

I’m listening to my kids a lot right now.  I’m listening to the questions that they are asking and the things that they are noticing.  I’m paying attention to what’s important to them and spending a lot of my time there.

I’m also listening to my thoughts, like my self-talk.  I’m listening to the lies that I tell myself and the truths that are bigger than that.

You have to know that on my night stand I have like a fifillion books stacked up at any given time and I am probably reading all of them at the same time.  I’m reading a bunch of books right now as I go through my Spiritual Direction Training, but then I’m also reading fun ones.

I just finished Gift from the Sea, which is such a great little read.  It is so beautiful.  I’m reading Jen Wilkin’s None Like Him.  I’m reading Unseen by Sara Hagerty.

I’m really into cookbooks right now, not because I am an amazing chef or because I want to be, but because I love the cookbooks that have the story behind it.  Ruth Reichl is one of my favorites.  She used to the be the editor for Gourmet Magazine.  She has a cookbook called My Kitchen Year:  136 Recipes That Saved My Life.  After Gourmet Magazine was shut down she wrote about how cooking through the seasons was really healing for her coming out of that.  I love that.

I’m loving reading Jenna Kutcher’s Instagram.  She’s just such a kick ass Rockstar that I can’t even.

I’m watching all the tulips in our neighborhood bloom and all of the trees turn bright pink, and I might have trained my kids to pick all of the flowers when we go on walks.  I’m watching Spring happen.

On Netflix, we are watching Suits.  So good.  We’re watching This is Us.  The other night we watched a documentary that a dear friend of mine told me about called The Heart of Man, which every person needs to watch with their spouse with a box of Kleenex.

What are you passionate about?
Oh, gosh.  Everything.  Life.  People.  I’m really passionate about shaking up the status quo.  I’m a bit of a button pusher.  I like to push back on comfort zones and well chiseled paths.  I always want to ask, “Is there a way to do it different?”.  I love to turn things upside down and inside out and shake it up and then kind of look at it from a different angle.  Some people say that this makes them uncomfortable, but it really is just me being passionate about curiosity and wanting to understand people and why they think the way they do and what makes them excited.  I’m passionate about bridging the gap between faith and real life and cutting out all of the Christian cheesiness and really saying, “When the stuff hits the fan, how is Jesus real to you?”  I’m on a constant quest for that and am constantly talking to God about that.

I’m really passionate about growing and really figuring out how I can be less Bekah and more Jesus.

What/where are you writing?
I stopped writing for a while because of life, but I’m going to start working on a second book and see what God wants to do with that.  I love to write in a place in TN called Leaper’s Fork.  It’s my favorite.  It feels like Heaven.  I literally feel like God’s Spirit lives there.  It’s an art gallery with Adirondack chairs in the back that overlooks this grass field.  There is the smell of the bonfires in the front and all of the trees and the grass.  I feel the Spirit of creativity there like no other place on earth.

If I write at a coffee shop, I get really excited about the people next to me and suddenly  I find myself writing about what they are talking about.  I get too distracted.

Are there any other projects or ministries that you are working on/with?
I’m in a two year program to become a spiritual director, which is just a really lame name for listening to people’s souls.  It’s like a soul care friend.  It’s listening to where someone has been and where God is moving in their life and helping reflect that back to them with questions and affirmations.

I’m also working full time as a writing and marketing manager for a company Monday through Thursday.  On Friday, I do writing, speaking, creative coaching.  I just love new and seasoned writers.  When I wrote my first book I felt really alone.  I didn’t have a lot of writer friends and I didn’t feel like I knew what I was doing.  Nothing makes me more alive than to talk with other people and to cheer them on in their journey.  So many writers just need somebody to say, “You’re doing it!”  “Keep going!”  “You’re voice matters.”  Those words are so powerful.  I just love helping people figure out what that story is inside of them and helping them communicate it in a really creative, out of the box way.

I’m a speaker at Lauren Gaskill’s Finding Joy Ladies Night Out, which I get to be a part of in Nashville in November.

I also started Pasture when we moved here, which is intentional conversation and curated experiences to nourish one’s soul.  It’s a monthly gathering.  I’m praying about how that can grow and what it looks like in the future.  My dream is to have a store front in Leaper’s Ford where we could have opportunities for people to come in and we could offer spiritual direction and soul care.  We could also have a champagne bar and a local wild flower artist.  In the evening we would open up the space for pasture and it would be a safe haven for women to come and feel seen and loved.

How can we connect with you?
On my couch with an old fashioned.  On social media at Instagram and on Facebook or on my website.

What is an area that you’d like to grow in?
So many things.  I’m a really sensitive soul.  I use to beat myself up for it, but right now I am really paying attention to the way that God has made me discerning.  Because of that, I can walk in a room and I can feel emotions and sense things.  I have to work really hard at not taking my external environment and bringing it inside of me.  Right now, I’m asking God to help me keep the inner satisfied and content space in my soul regardless of whether or not there is chaos or tension.  I’m learning how to not let my outer environment take away my inner contentment.

I want to drink more water.  I’m learning how to care with out carrying.  I want to love people without feeling like I need to fix them or rescue them, but just sit in it and listen to them.

I want to grow in technical areas.  I feel intimidated by in and can feel like I’m holding myself back because I’m not good at it.

How can we build you up?
I’m a words of affirmation person and I’m a one-on-one person.  I think even just someone taking the time to reach out and say that my words matter or that they are praying for me really speaks love to me.  I think often times the encouragers sometimes need encouragement.

Is there a parting thought you would like to share?
Pay attention to what shimmers.  The gal that leads my Spiritual Direction cohort said that and I love it.  I think that would be my parting words.  I’d say, pay attention to what shimmers, but I’d even take it a step further and say to go towards what makes you feel lighter inside.  There are burdens, disappointments, and expectations, and things that make us feel heavy inside, but there is also the beauty, freedom, peace, and that inner satisfaction where God is so big that it squeezes out all the ego and we feel lighter inside.  My encouragement is to move toward that.  Move towards what makes you feel lighter and move towards what shimmers.


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