Currently, my personal image of myself could be summed up as: the smallest drop of water in the largest body of ocean.
I think that’s called, just a drop in a bucket.
And sometimes it feels like a tree falling in an abandoned, unknown forest.
But I don’t think that always. Just sometimes. When I do, it’s loud and distracting. It’s the small flicker of my dreams being met by a furious gust of wind.
And then darkness.
I don’t think I’m alone. I think we all, at some point, hear that voice telling us how truly unlovely and insignificant we are.
I got the opportunity to hear Jon Acuff (bestselling author. You might know him from Stuff Christians Like) speak at Blissdom this past weekend. He asked us to write down the one negative statement that tiny voice keeps telling us.
I grabbed my pen but I should have grabbed my heart. It dropped so low and I knew that I had allowed myself to be marred by this voice one thousand times over.
I twirled my pen. Pretending like I just could not think of what that negative thought was.
And Jon said, write it down now.
So I did. You should to. Write it down now.
Here, I’ll go first,
“Someone else is already doing it better than you and even if you try, know that someone else can certainly do it better than you ever will.”
And I shook my head when I wrote this. I agreed with this thought and allowed a list of names come to me. The ones who are already doing it better or are further along or have figured it out. And that gust of wind takes everything I have.
And then darkness.
Tears fell hard and silent. And I bit my lip. And “coughed.” I got up for water.
Jon said two things after that. I hope they change my life.
He said, “When your fears get louder, you’re probably doing something right.”
And I thought about all the times that fear was so ruthlessly loud. When that fear backed me into a corner and shrunk me to just a drop. And then deposited me into a bucket.
They were all times before big steps. Larger than life steps.
Like when I married Beau.
Or when I went to Thailand.
Or when I moved back to Colorado Springs and accepted my job at Compassion.
And the time it has been the loudest? The day I said yes to God about being serious about my blog. Sometimes I never feel so completely foolish or small as when I think about this pursuit.
I am sharing this fear, that I honestly feel to be quite embarrassing and horrifically vulnerable, because I think that maybe you are at a place where your dream and that fear are colliding.
And that fear is looking mighty fierce and howling with everything it has. And it’s aimed right at you.
I want to say to you, your dream is so much brighter and stronger than that vapor of a fear.
I want to say to you that God made you for something truly bright and beautiful and lasting.
I want to say to you that this thing that you love or want to do but you are thinking of quitting or not even starting, well I think the world is going to miss out on a lot if you hold back.
I think you might need to hear exactly what I heard Jon say, “Never compare your beginning to somebody’s middle.”
I wanted to tell you because I think you are a dreamer. And sometimes us dreamers can be a little too hard on ourselves.
Or we can forget that fear is a distractor. A destroyer.
I think I need to fight this fear with a little truth. And when I wrote out my fear, I heard something else. A little piece of truth:
Yes, your passion will breed love and compassion. It will breed a heart out to do the will of the Father. A mind capable of doing what it knows we’re here to do.
Fear will only silence you and hold you back. And then it will fill you with regret so poisonous you’ll lose yourself.
When I was in college a friend of mine asked me, “What is your greatest fear in life?”
Without so much as a breath I said,
“That one day I will stand at the gates of Heaven and be greeted by my Father. My. Father. And with just one look I will realize how truly powerful and mighty and awe-inspiring He is. And I will realize in that moment how much of the world I let steal my joy, or control me, or quiet me because I did not realize what I had access to in Jesus.”
The words of Jon will resonate with me, “The unstuck are unstoppable.” And the only thing fear does is get us stuck.
And I think I just want to challenge you, dreamer, to write out your dream. And then next to it write out that one negative thought which fear is using against you
And realize everything that will be lost if you let that fear get you stuck.