Posts Tagged ‘fear’

Letting go

August 31, 2008

I think I am going through my teens late.  I feel as though I am just now discovering who I really am.  It is as if I have forced myself in a box too small.  I think I’m finally seeing myself as I was meant to be and simultaneously letting go of who I forced myself to be.  It has taken a good deal of courage to let go of what I have and in reality, it probably isn’t very much.  But I am not trying to down play it…it is what it is.  I ask myself, “Self, why do you run from who you are?”  It reminds me of Nelson Mandella’s speech where he said

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn’t serve the world. There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We are born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us, it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” – Speech given by Nelson Mandela, text by Marianne Williamson

I think the woman who wrote this was really on to something.  Now that I have come to realize that life is a journey and salvation a life long process I feel more at ease with the world and myself.  And it’s neat because the more I get to know the real me, the more I like myself which is significant indeed.  I have taken a lot of the pressure of myself and let my guard down a bit more.  I took a cultural diversity class last summer and one of the things that really stuck out to me was the idea that we give our daughters roots and our sons wings.  I have wanted to fly my whole life and there have been so many bogus things that have kept me grounded.  I am starting to feel like I can fly.  There is so much out there in the world.  So many people to meet, so many places to go, so many foods to taste and things to see, so many songs to listen to and play, dances to learn, people to love, faces to kiss…the world is scary and terrible but beautiful and wonderful.  It is a paradox.

Oh yeah….and I found out I like The Goo Goo Dolls.

Photo by: paveitapics

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Fear and Coping

July 13, 2008

I just had coffee with a friend of mine.  It was a good time.  I wish we were able to spend more time together but the circumstances just have not allowed it thus far.  We ended up talking about eating disorders as she battled anorexia for years and it was only after a 2 month stay at Remuda Ranch that she was able to overcome it.  It was amazing to hear her talk about her experience and I realized something that I think is very key.  Many, if not all, personality disorders and eating disorders have a foundation based on fear and our attempts to cope with the unpredictability and abiguity of life.  It’s as if each and every one of us struggles with the same thing on a foundational level but the circumstances and our ways of coping are different.  I find this helpful for a couple of reasons.  1) I am a bottom line kinda gal.  2) It’s much easier to normalize what I am struggling with (instead of stressing about it and blowing it out of proportion) when I realize it is a “human” problem instead of just a “me” problem.

Okay…that’s my thought for now.  I need to go read some more for my class.

Photo by: Nate Steiner

even Paul

May 21, 2008

For those of you who have posted comments that i haven’t responded to, thank you so much for yur feedback.  Your comments have been very thought provoking and I have been turning things over in my head quite a bit the past couple of days.  I think this post will summarize my responses as well as some other things.

In my post I wanna Preach, I talked about my desire to do just that and the feelings of fear and inadequacy I was feeling as a result of wanting to step into that.  Next in Torn, I spoke about how I was afraid of committment.  To give a little background on that, it was only a year ago that I came out of a significant period of burnout.  I nearly lost myself when i was in the navy and I’m not talking about the positive dying to self type either.  It was bad.  I went through a year of counseling in order to come out of that.  I have experienced much healing and restoration for sure.  But I am also a bit gun shy.  I don’t want to go back to that place.  This realization is pretty fresh.  I started to understand it when I realized I was pulling back from certain things.  I was even pulling back from my classes a little bit.  So I believe what is happening is that when I start to feel overewhelmed and believe I am starting towards that that place of loosing myself, though that place is far from me I pull back as if it is an imminent danger.  Then there’s the post I did on the new face my fear wears: teenagers. 

To this post, a guy named Frank, who blogs here, said:

I’ve read your posts, I’ve read what you want and in all those words you always go back to being inadequate.

It wasn’t until he said this that I ralized the common thread of my own posts and made me wince.  Yeah…maybe it’s obvious, but as Frank said, “sometimes it’s nice to get a comment from an outsider.”

Then Ruth came in with a comment that really made me think.  She ended with “sorry to give you so much at once…”  : )  I actually like getting a lot at once.  Ideas are not often stand alone units of thought.  They are linked in an intricate web of ideas and people and history.  Ideas are also like a puzzle.  Sometimes the piece you need to put ideas together is lying right next to the others it’s just facing the wrong way so you don’t see it.  She also called me honey which made me smile.

So to get to the point of this already long post, I was reading a daily devotion I like (which is a miracle in itself) and it pointed me to 1 cor 2.1-5 which says:

When I came to you, brothers, I did not come with eloquence or superior wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God.  For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on men’s wisdom, but on God’s power.

The part that stuck out to me was v. 3: ‘I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling.”  So Paul, the Superman of the Apostles, came in weakness, fear, and with much trembling!?!?  Yeah…tell me we don’t idolize Paul.  I have often heard the first part of this passage quoted, but it is always done in such a way as to build him up as said Superman and insinuate that he choose to leave his eloquence behind for the sake of the gospel.  Sure, this is probably true in some instances and to a certain degree, but I think it’s alo because just like any normal person, he was scared.  He had to face his fears just like everyone else.  And so I am comforted in that.  I am encouraged in that.  Because God used Paul in a mighty way despite his fears because he wanted to be used.  And so do I.  And so, I will face my fears and in the strength of God I will not back down.  I will have moments where I have to pull away and shed a few tears and ask for strength, but I will face my fears.  And I will allow God to heal me and strengthen me and use me. 

So to answer some of Ruth’s questions, I do want to preach.  I hadn’t thought of preaching and youth ministry as mutually exclusive, but I can definitely see it’s a different ball of wax.  I do not feel called to youth ministry long term, but I think it’s what God has for me for a season.  I have been thinking on it for about 6 months.  And initially my answer was ‘no.’  And that ‘no’ was tested, and I held onto it.  It was nice to be able to do that.  And the youth director respected my no which was awesome.  But I think there is something there for me now.  Something to give and something to receive.

Okay…I gotta get ready for work.  For those of you who made it to the end of this long post, you win a prize!  To claim it, please treat yourself to a free sample on me!  ; )

Fear

May 18, 2008

Fear has a new face for me.  It is embodied in teenagers.  Now if I was a parent of a teen this might make sense, but being that I am half way through my 27th year of life and have yet to start a family of my own this is not the case.  When I was growing up, I didn’t fit in with my peers.  I was destined to remain on the fringe of the small pockets of society I lived in.  Some rejected me because I was not pretty enough.  Some rejected me because I was too smart.  Some rejected me because I was a band nerd.  When I became a Christian and lived my life for Christ some rejected me for that.  That was the easiest of the rejections to handle.  At least for that I was being rejected because of who Jesus was and not because of who I was…or wasn’t.  I hated middle school and high school in particular.  Hate is a strong word I don’t use often but I use it here on purpose.  While some people had notes in their lockers to look forward to and had invited to birthday parties of their friends, I was kicked in the back of my feet and legs as I walked down the hallway.  I was the one whose bike helmet was found on the roof.  And now there are parts of me that aren’t quite grown up yet.  There are parts of my heart that are wounded and have not yet healed.  There are parts of me that cower in the corner.  So today when I went to lunch with some of the youth to celebrate the birthday of the youth group directors little girl, one of those parts was uncovered.  I stepped way out of my comfort zone and tried to interact with high school girls.  Nothing big…just being in the same air space…talking about the menu…nothing intense.  And after about 15 minutes I was struggling with feelings of rejection.  To the point that I had to take a breather in the bathroom and allow God to strengthen my heart.  To the point that (I’m a bit embarassed to admit this) I shed a few alligator tears.  Why am I still so broken?  Can God heal my wounds?  Since I know the answer is yes, will He heal my wounds?  Since I know the answer to that is “Only if I let him” how can I be sure if I am letting him?  I felt so completely inadequate.  Interesting that this came right after one of the teens told me I had impacted her life in something I had written that her mom had at the house.  She said, “You don’t even know me, but you impacted my life and I wanted to let you know.”  And then she gave me a hug.  I feel like a ping ping ball.  The battle is fierce…