I’ve been struggling the last few weeks in my personal life. Trying to discern the road before me and make each step in conviction rather than by accident or chance. Life has been a beautiful disaster, moments of sure victory, peace and joy, filled with hesitation, pause, battles and trying to find myself and my place in the war of living freely.
I hear a call, an invitation to “Come with Me Now”… I know not where I am going or how to even climb this mountain in front of me, but I know that I am not asked to climb without reason, that I am not asked to go to these places only to fail.
God doesn’t care that I am afraid of heights, it’s my fear that allows me to know I am alive as I climb a 70 foot tower.. He dares me to try, to trust him and to take each step. I don’t want to be an unwilling adventurist or one that complains on every step that I ascend. I don’t want to make it so hard for him to invite me, and have decided to finally take joy in each uncertain step. He made me to feel, to be, His Radiant Bride. My soul is called for the desire and hope for all that He has and wants to offer me. I look back and laugh at my humanity, for questioning where and how I am drawn out, for who I am created to be and how I am called to live. Isn’t the better response to simply say “Show Me, I will go where you lead. Teach Me, I want, no, I am more than willing to learn”?
I watched in the early morning hours yesterday as a woman was walking with her husband along the beautiful San Diego beachfront and came to a divot in the sand… a place separated, two feet into the ground a hole that stretches the length of the sand and exposes the shrubbery and roots from the glancing trees that run along the upper beach, it is a two foot by 25 foot stretch that drops down maybe a foot or so.. Her husband easily walked the space without much a jump and as he offered his hand to lead her to jump over it, she went for it, hesitated, stopped and then walked the length to politely avoid it’s “trap” all together… As her husband looked at her strangely for a minute, she then said “I couldn’t take the risk, with my luck, I would’ve fallen”…. My heart hurt hearing her words, her lost youth and the joy in leaping over something, that felt like a risk, and was really a two foot hop. How many people will make their own road, because something feels too big, too much of a “risk” to dare and try? When did we learn, or when were we taught that becoming an adult means you can’t play and can’t take joy in remembering how to be child-like in the pursuit? When did fear grow so large that it compromised our desires and our very nature that was created to live, freely??
I escaped to San Diego this weekend, to find part of me that has been lost, to rediscover what I am missing and to ask for clarity in this journey… Being the responsible parent and choosing to take this trip sans kids, you can imagine my joy, when my beachfront room and “my private beach” became terrorized by a large family with children ranging from 2 to 10 for the day… you can imagine my “joy” when 3 of these little terrorists, decided “my porch” was THE perfect place to play Star Wars and that “my beach chairs on MY porch” was THE perfect “X-wing” to re-enact their imaginary play… They had no thought, no fear and were not intimidated away as I got up and walked past them to retrieve a few more adult beverages from the fridge… As I grabbed the drinks and paused for a minute to relieve my bladder, I heard a very distinct prompting…
Are you really so annoyed? They are my beautiful Children, so is the beach, so is this room..
Instant Attitude Adjustment. How beautiful to remember the freedom to act audaciously bold, child-like, to see these little children playing in their Fathers Kingdom and the freedom in living and playing in every space, because what else is it there for but to be played in?? As I took a moment, to thank my Father for the sweet lesson and gentle words, the humble reminder that occasionally, the stick I was seeing in a moment that morning in someone else’s eye, is perhaps blocked by the 2×4 in mine…and letting me see the lesson in the simplicity of it, I made a decision.Live. Today.
I walked back out to my Father’s sunny beach, to a space that he made in beauty for me to enjoy fully, made every piece in creation, including myself, and made it all to reflect His glory, His desires. Everything we touch, see, feel, experience was made to balance, harmonize and live together in beauty, adventure and joy. To my left and behind me, the children continued to play. To my right and out 50 yards a swarm of birds were taking in the heat and cool breeze, resting in front of the water. They called to my inner child… to the woman in me, to the spirit of fire and freedom that I know God has for me… Without hesitation, I took off in a full run, in an itty bitty, tiny bikini and ran like hell… 30 yards into my run, i realized with the tide pulled back, there were rocks directly in my path and made a giant leap, I must have looked like a mad woman to the 20 or so witnesses that day… and yet I slowed for no one.. I made an assault on this beach front and ran every bird into the sky… over 100 birds took to the sky in unison as I ran and played with full joy, for no one but myself, and because they had been sitting, too quietly, too peaceful… I laughed aloud and joyfully ran another 20 yards to chase the birds that thought they could be safe to land to my left… I was a woman possessed.. with the desire to please my Father and play on the beach, for His joy and to praise His works, so clearly made for my laughter and enjoyment. I walked slowly, calmly, radiantly and with my shoulders back and body in perfect posture, back to my blanket and adult beverage… I let the arms of the ocean, the love of my Father shine through to deliver me, once again and remind me of how fiercely I am loved.
The journey is so worthy, Friends.
Failure is only achieved if I don’t allow myself to give life everything I have. Failure cannot be achieved in acts, but in self. I can try and not succeed, but I have already won, because I have conquered myself. This adventure, this beauty, this Life calls to each one of us and begs us to play with abandon. If we cannot learn to love and lead in fearless joy, we ruin our very lives and all the hope that is offered in such deep fantastical freedom, with hesitation and fear of risk. I want more… and as I sit and write this today, I see another swarm inviting me to chase them… to chase life, to pursue reckless abandon in the hope of what it means to live freely. And Love…