Not Being Afraid To Be Afraid

Memories can last a lifetime, but so can regrets.

In the small amount of time I’ve had on this earth, I’ve lived a pretty safe life. Looking back on it, something that I’ve noticed is the times that we fear and the times we are afraid, end up being the times that we remember the most and are the most important to us. Many people are so afraid of what could happen to the point that they are no longer willing to experience new things. Whether this resistance to change revolves around travel, food, people, or places, everyone can think of something in their life that they are at least a little bit afraid of.

But instead of dwelling on this fear and letting it control our lives, let us not be afraid to be afraid.

We should let the power that fear can have over us push us to get out of our comfort zones. Now fill in this next sentence for yourself: For a long time, I’ve been afraid to ____________. For me, that space is not filled with the words “try something new” or “travel to a foreign country” or something adventurous and seemingly obvious, but instead, it is filled with the words “disappoint” “let people down” and “be stuck.” Personally, I am not afraid to travel the world or to move to New York one day or go on that last minute road trip, but I am more afraid of how the people around me, namely my friends and family, will react to my adventurous actions. I’m not trying to push the blame to anyone because that will simply do no good. I’m just trying to help you understand why I (and maybe you) have reservations about taking risks. I fear I will disappoint my family if I move far away from them one day. I have loved the upbringing I have had and am so thankful for it, but I can already tell that my time in the ATX, and even in Texas, will be quickly coming to an end following my undergraduate graduation. I cannot live with the comfort that is found here. I want to see the world and experience new cultures and I’m not afraid to do any of it.

To be frank, I’m not afraid of dying. What I mean by that is, that I have my identity in Jesus Christ and as it says in Philippians, “I can do all things through Him who gives me strength.” I know where I’m going, and this life is too short for me to not see and experience as much of ‘God’s green earth’ that I can. So much of our fear to travel new places is rooted in our fear of dying, but if you are a believer in Christ and have faith that his death and resurrection has saved you from your sins and transgressions, there is no reason that you should be afraid to live. Following God’s calling for us can be scary, but we have no reason to not trust that Jesus will give us the peace and guidance that we need through it all.

I want to make and learn from mistakes. So much of my life has been ‘playing it safe’ and this may be hard to understand, but I’ve been trying to learn from mistakes I’ve never made and it is not working. Albert Einstein said, “A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.” I don’t want to look back in 30 years, 5 years, or even next month and not have had experiences to grow and learn from. If life is a rollercoaster, there are highs and lows. Although going up may be scary and coming down may sometimes hurt, no one ever liked a rollercoaster that goes in a simple straight line.

In life, I think a lot of people are afraid of something happening, but I’m much more afraid of nothing happening at all.

Until our next adventure,

x Caleb Moushon

 

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