Sometimes there is no amount of healing, processing, meditation or prayer that will help us make it through the scariest things in life. In these situations, the only thing we can do is JUMP IN and hope for the best.
The Supports that Help Most of the Time….but not Always
I have spent the past many years of my life helping people to live a more peaceful and fulfilling life. Clients and students seek my support in helping them to identify the fears that are standing in the way of contentment and joy in their lives and for the tools to help them move through these fears. While process work and spiritual practices go a long way in helping us to achieve the fulfillment of our desires; there are some things that are just so scary that no amount of process work or meditation is going to help us move through them. These are the situations in our lives when we have to jump in and do it regardless of how terrifying it might be.
Taking the Leap
Skydiving is one of those situations. In preparation for a dive, skydivers learn about all the ways they could die and about all the precautions they must take to prevent otherwise certain death. Regardless of all this learning and preparation, however, when you are staring out of the door of a plane and looking at the earth 10,000 feet below you, you are going to be terrified. There are no meditation or mindfulness practices that are going to save you from the blood curdling fear that is now coursing through your veins. The only answer to this fear…..is to jump. And then, pray like heck that the parachute actually opens.
Applying for a Job
Applying for a job is like that. We come to the door with our past experiences, humiliations, hopes, dreams, fears in hand. And again, no amount of processing, meditation or prayer is going to help us get to the door. We have to leave our house. Get in the car. Put the key into the ignition. Drive. AND…get out of the car and apply for the job.
The Danger of Love
And perhaps the scariest of them all….falling in love. We show up at the door of our new possibilities with the baggage of all our past relationships – our past hurts, betrayals, disappointments and all the ways in which our heart has been broken. Beside that luggage is the valise which contains our hopes, our dreams, our expectations and our desires. And beside that, the carry-on of all our human frailties, our imperfections, our compulsions and our fears. In the face of new love, there is no amount of processing our past hurts, healing our old wounds or letting go of our attachment to outcomes that will ensure that this love will last, let alone work at all. There is no amount of meditation or prayer that will insure that this love will be the perfect love. instead, it is as the poet, David Whyte reminds, “Every love is an unrequited love.” As such, we have no choice but to jump in. Try it on. See what happens. Take a risk. Knowing that in all likelihood, here too we will be hurt, betrayed, disappointed and that our heart will be broken – perhaps a million times.
With Risk Comes Reward
Whether contemplating skydiving, seeking a new job, leaving a marriage, trying a new relationship or becoming a parent the most dangerous temptation is to avoid these things all together. We are tempted to allow the fears to prevent us from taking the risk. When we avoid risks however, we also miss out on the rewards. While all of these are the scariest things, the benefits are so enormous that regardless of how scary we all know them to be….we keep doing it. We willingly jump out of planes for entertainment. We have children. We accept a new job. We fall in love. And the reason we do this is because on some level we know that the benefits far outweight the costs. And with that I will leave you with a poem that I wrote about taking such a risk.
Be willing to have your heart broken by love.
Be courageous enough to love, knowing that:
You will be imperfect in it.
You will trip and you will fall.
You will disappoint and be disappointed.
Your heart will be broken
And you will break another’s heart.
For what other reason could you be here but to love
And to know love in return?
And finally, the YouTube link to my favorite song from my favorite movie about taking the risk: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xgcIpKL86Jk
Authentic Freedom Ministries