I watch people around me doing brave things, every single day. Women and men alike setting their junk aside to go out and own their destiny.
I wish that they could see me cheering for them, these astoundingly brave people. I’m in their corner- believing in them, hoping for them, celebrating with them. Sometimes these brave things are big and poignant- like ending a relationship, buying a home, quitting a job, or getting sober. Sometimes these brave things are humble and quiet- like being truthful, updating a resume to begin a job search, committing to an exercise regimen, or dating (Jesus take the wheel).
We do big and little brave things every single day. Sometimes the bravest thing I can do is show up for a workout when I don’t feel like doing anything except for sitting on the couch eating Trader Joe’s chocolate covered pretzels. And between you and me, if I complete a workout that has burpees in it then I will definitely be eating the pretzels.
We inevitably get really really scared of the brave things we are being called to do. You know the kind of brave things I’m talking about- the kind that make your heart leap with hope at the thought of what might be and cower in fear at what may be asked of us to get there. Even when these brave things will lead to something beautiful and life changing, we are scared. Absolutely-freaking-terrified. Even when these brave things are our heart’s most cherished desires, our greatest and most significant not yet, we balk.
We are scared that things won’t work out like we want them too. We are scared that our expectations will not be met. We are scared that we will be made a fool of. We are scared that we are wrong about something potentially being the right thing and buy into the misguided notion that it is most certainly the wrong thing. We are scared to reveal our whole hearts and to show our hand. We hold back, try to be diligent and strategic, try not move too quickly through this really big thing that could be absolutely glorious but that we are completely terrified to do.
The fear tells us to stay small and pack it all in, the emotions and the hope and the angst. We tell ourselves not to show too much, not to say too much, not to jump too far ahead.
All the while our hearts are skipping beats with excitement and anticipation at the possibility of success.
Fear tells us we are walking through fire. It’s a roller coaster. I find myself holding my breath. I alternate between being completely enamored with my dream, trusting God and the process and knowing that I am being guided in the right direction, and digging my heels in the ground while shaking my head with a firm no. I doubt myself. I want to know the outcome when I’m waiting at the starting line. I want to know what will happen; if I should be more careful or if I should lean all in. I claw for the feigned safety of the known.
It is in these moments that I am absolutely sure that walking through the fear is too big of an ask. It is in these moments that I think settling for my current situation is probably best. You might get hurt. What if this turns out just like the last time? The pain is inevitable. Get out while you can. Stop. Turn back. Run.
The fear is really ramped up at this point. It’s on a good one and taking me along for the ride. It tells me I am incapable. It tells me I am unworthy. It tells me I can’t trust myself or the small wins I’ve been tracking along the way. It tells me I cannot walk through this, especially this, with grace and ease. It tells me that I am tied to a bullet train heading straight for disaster. It tells me to freeze and become invisible.
Fear asks me how I ever had the gall to apply for this opportunity in the first place.
Thankfully it is only a matter of time before I remember who I am and what this life is all about. Love in the form of truth enters. Truth, sweet truth. Knowing. Trusting. I know deep within me that I can and will survive anything. I will triumph. I will be a trailblazer. We all will. I consider what God wants for me and what God is doing WITH me. How silly I am to worry so much, when He has a plan and all I have to do is get out of His way.
I hug the little girl inside of me, who has somehow temporarily taken the wheel, and tell her that I’ve got this. We are strong and capable and worthy, she and I, and we are surrounded by a village of like-minded people. Our village is awesome and they will not let us drown. We will not fail. Even if we fall we will get right back up again. If we fall it means we were destined to fall in that exact spot. The falling is essential, as is the breaking.
The falling is exquisite.
My higher self reminds me of my heart’s deepest desires. My higher self reminds me of my purpose. My higher self reminds me that I must, absolutely must, walk through this fear that is gripping my heart and escort myself to the other side. My higher self reminds me that I am not alone and that I will never be alone. My higher self reminds me that I am not defined by the outside things and that I know, intuitively, where to go in order to stay on the right path. I know that the hurdles behind me are also victories. I know that I am fearlessly embracing my path towards what I want most in this life, and that means dealing with any fear and focusing all of my energy on the creation of the good.
My dreams are so big they inspire me into action and they coax me forward even when I want to stop dead in my tracks. I must do the right thing, the bold thing, the inspired thing, the true thing, the intentional thing, the thing that is calling to be done. I must go to it and I must see it through. Courage, dear heart. Courage.
So for me in this chapter of my life, whether it’s having a new job, writing, exploring a sweet new relationship, or surviving the CrossFit workout of the day, I move forward. That is how I, and we, walk through through the fear of doing the thing calling to be done in order to get to the fulfillment of our heart’s greatest desires.
If you don’t have a village, you can join mine. We are in it together. Never alone. Sometimes terrified. Full of God’s truth and grace. We do it anyways, despite, and in the name of.
That’s when the miracles happen. Thank you for doing this with me.
ps. I recently went on vacation to Kauai and the cover photo is from Salt Pond Beach Park. 🙂