For the first time in my life, I have a job I really, really love for all the right reasons – and I recently realized that it scares me to death. Something clicked the other day, and I caught my breath for a moment when reading the book Relying on the Holy Spirit by Charles Stanely (awesome book). The part about using your gifts…I had to stop reading to journal about gifts and talents and how uniquely crafted we all are by an amazing God who gave to each as He saw fit and allowed us the tremendous privilege of being able to use our gifts to serve Him and to learn from and complement each other. For the first time, I find myself in a position where I’m being encouraged and challenged to use the talents God has given me – but more than that – to do what I LOVE and was crafted to do. I get to write as much as I want, across the board: creatively, reflectively, professionally, every notch along the way, I can tag with my words. I proofread, edit, collaborate, work as part of a team, am encouraged to be creative and take responsibility for what I’m doing and develop my skills more as I develop my confidence in my ability to do these things – and there, it seems, is where I get stuck.
I’m afraid of failure.
Silly, I know, because you fail automatically if you don’t try, and isn’t the fun in the effort, in the way you surprise yourself by trial and error (oooh I hate the word “error”) and learn from your mistakes (another rough one for me), and do the best you can…have these things just become so cliché that I can spout them out on paper but never internalize them? I want so, so badly to do well; to put everything I have into what I’m doing and produce amazing work and be energetic and joyful and just exude life into my work place – I get to work for a church I love, with people I love, doing what I love – am I not the most blessed girl in the world? So what is my problem; what’s standing in my way?
Myself. I’m paralyzing myself with a fear of attempted flight on novice wings, afraid the wind will only hold me for so long before ceasing to carry me and suddenly leaving me suspended in the thinnest air, flailing and floundering to regain a sense of composure and keep my handholds in the sky.
God has blessed me beyond my wildest dreams; I owe it to Him to give my all and throw myself whole-heartedly into any tasks He graciously sets before me. I am humbled, and thankful beyond the scope of words, and newly motivated in the wake of a 5 am bleary-eyed epiphany that I have, in fact, been afraid of flight for fear of falling. I need to face my inner demons head-on, the way Sarah did in Labyrinth as she looked at her pale form in the mirror and in the sheer shock of a moment’s clarity that widened her no longer clouded eyes, calmly proclaimed, “You have no power over me.”
I will try, and struggle, and fall, and dust off my tender knees with hands of hope. I will laugh, and cry, and lean on other’s shoulders as I learn to put my pride aside. I will not fail, because I refuse to think of failure as anything other than inactivity or laziness, and I am better than that, and called to more. I will dare to dream, and better yet, to believe in myself in ways I couldn’t when I crawled in fear to the middle of my life’s curving road and stretched out on the yellow lines, a quiet obstacle blocking my own way.

“[Alice falls down the rabbit hole and her dress poofs up like a parachute.]
Alice: ‘Well, after this I should think nothing of falling down stairs.'”
Through the Looking Glass, Lewis Carroll