On the first day of kindergarten, I repeated my teacher’s name about a million times for my parents before they walked me to the bus stop. (I’m still convinced those letters have no business forming a name, let alone sitting right next to each other.) The point is, on the first day of kindergarten, I was terrified to get the whole thing wrong–and not just my teacher’s name.
New beginnings are inherent to life–as is change–and so fearing those things can drive a person crazy. New beginnings can be a bit like putting a wet bathing suit on. It fits. And you are raring to get back into the sun and water but those first ten seconds of wearing it aren’t comfortable. As I started this new job, I was not afraid. But there are nerves. I am calmed by the belief that this is where I’m supposed to be and what I’m supposed to be doing. That is a sweet place to be.
The past two years have been filled to the brim with transitions, changes, beginnings, and even endings. I’ve learned those are all the things that make up an adventure. I’ve been asked to step out in faith, into adventure, time and again, trusting His plan for me. And each time I’ve lifted my feet and moved one foot in front of the other, I’ve been so thankful.
I’ve never regretted it.
I love the first page of a new notebook–blank and fresh. But sometimes new beginnings aren’t as easy a new moleskine. Sometimes you are moving (across the country) (twice). Sometimes you are a starting a new job in a new again city.
There are nerves and excitement and when there is fear I have to let it go, like a whoosh of breath. The thing is that the past two years have been all about leaps and risks. Is that life or is it something in me changing? Sometimes I think: oh, I must be immune to that pit of nervousness in my stomach.
But hey. Guess what? I’m not.
And I don’t really want to be.
Because the truth about (new) adventures and new beginnings is that they are opportunities to grow and learn–about yourself, about the world, about God. I don’t want to ever stop walking out in faith. I don’t want to play it safe and I certainly don’t want to settle.
But wanting this and living it are two different things. Don’t misunderstand me. I’m nervous to meet new people and colleagues (and I’m a people person!). I’m nervously eager to do a quality job in this blessing I’ve been given. My brain is the opposite of GPS so I am anxious to relearn Chicago (since I’ve forgotten what little I “knew”).
But fear. Fear is different. Fear clutches you and hold you back. Fear is unbelief. Fear is saying no to adventure. Fear and faith oppose one another.
How do you handle new beginnings, friends?