Have you ever talked yourself out of something? I am a professional at talking myself out of things. Seriously, I should have a doctorate, I am so skilled. However, to be able to talk yourself out of things, good, but challenging things, is a skill I would like to unlearn. This realization came to me after a trip to the park with my three kids.
My son was stuck at the top of the play structure. He wanted to slide down the pole like a kid aches for ice cream, however, his fear had him stuck at the top. I could see the conflict etched on his face by the tension between a heart longing to slide down and a mind talking him out of it. I stood at the bottom of the pole – strong arms, ready to spot, and catch, if necessary. It didn’t seem to be enough for him that I was there ready to catch him. The desire to slide down was overtaken, his minds’ rhetoric winning, as I watched him back away from the pole. I yelled up to him, “You can slide down the pole AND be scared!”
The words ricocheted off the slide, bounced off the tire swings and hit my mind with searing truth. Truth that challenged arguments both well-founded and rooted in years of successful arbitration between heart and mind, faith and ability; with heart and faith most often on the loosing side. Comfort, conventional and rational always wins in my world. But. What if you can be scared and trust, scared and jump?
I have missed out on life experiences because I allowed fear to control my choices, but this opens up a whole new world to me. I had lived narrowly and had believed that the options were:
Scared= Stay OR Trust =Jump
I understand now that there are more options.
Trust + my fear = Brave
Faith + who I am = Brave
Belief + my abilities = Brave
Bravery is not the absence of fear. It’s me being me to the best of my ability and trusting that God has the rest of it covered. This relegates fear to a participant in bravery and no longer the deciding factor. Bravery puts fear beneath my feet to pave the way to freedom. What would happen if I loved this way? Parented this way? Led this way? Served God this way?
What would happen if you were brave? What would happen if fear no longer made your decisions for you? What would happen if comfort and rational were finally challenged in your life?
What would it look like if you were you, bravely?
Don’t be afraid to find out.
Wow….Bravery+Fear….God’s got this whole thing figured out! Blessed. Thanks for your post!
I love this so much. I talk myself out of things on a daily basis out of fear. Fear being one of the biggest reasons I am still single, fear of the unknown of venturing out of my safe cocoon of familiarity and comfort. It is beautifully written and gives me pause. Thank you for sharing this and I can’t wait to read everything else to come 🙂
Fear is not my friend. I say this to myself often. Bravery is your friend, Jennifer! Love ya!
Beautiful analogy of being scared and brave all at the same time. Sometimes we need that push to slide down the pole.
So wonderfully written! Do you mind if I share it at a meeting? Miss you!!!
Please share Heather! Please share about the blog 🙂
Yes, please go ahead and share Heather! Miss you!
Bethany, this is so powerful!! Thank you so much for sharing this story in such an encouraging way!