Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Starting Over

Sometimes I want to start completely over.

Ever felt like that?
New place, new friends, new life...
A clean slate; a fresh start.

As I'm teetering on the edge of practically being there (new time zone, new zip code, endless possibilities), sometimes it's hard to not just take the plunge. Why not completely abandon everything and everyone I've formerly known and start over?

I feel like doing this the most when I feel like I've failed...when I feel like I've let someone down, when I've screwed up, when I can't possibly meet the expectations I sometimes feel are placed on me (whether they are real or not). I feel like this most when I'm lonely, when my heart hurts, when I realize what was can never be again.

It's a coping mechanism.
Instead of pressing further into people I care about, instead of letting others care about me, instead of walking in humility and admitting when I'm wrong...there's a part of me that would rather walk away. It's easier. It's easier to just be done. It's easier to not make the effort, to not take the time, to not admit that I'm wrong. It's easier to discard all the pieces of me from the past that aren't good and try to move into something better, into a place where no one knows my name.

I thrashed around in bed a several nights ago, unable to sleep, and convinced that this was the best solution to my feelings of inadequacy and ability to disappoint others repeatedly. Running seemed to provide refuge, it seemed to provide hope of something different and better without blurring the mistakes of the past with my dreams of the future.

And then it hit me how running away was entirely selfish. It hit me how running away, with this vision of starting over, would only perpetuate the the very things within that I longed to abolish. Instead of working through things, instead of going through the inevitable pain that always arises in the midst of the refining process...I thought I could jump ahead and get there just by being somewhere different, in the presence of different people, and doing something different. How foolish I am...

While the newness is met with open arms and the possibilities of what is still to come bring much excitement and anticipation--it's no longer met with the mindset of running away from what is hard. Do I still have to fight against that? Absolutely.
But, I know it's worth it.
I know that the more I press into others, the more I let them care about me, the more I am willing to admit when I'm wrong... the more I take the time, make the effort, and seek the Lord to do a miracle in me when I am dark, sinful and selfish... the more I will become that person who I long to be.

It's never easy...but, I think it's always worth it.
I hope you think so, too.
I hope...instead of choosing to flee from the things in your life that are much easier to avoid...that you would choose to engage. I hope that on the nights that you're lying in your bed, weeping because living another day in your current circumstances seems too unbearable, that you have hope. That instead of the insurmountable amount of things you dwell on that you think are wrong with yourself, or the people around you, or your life (in general)...that you would beg for Jesus to rescue, redeem, and change you. That you would ask Him to give you hope, to give you courage, to give you boldness.... that you would ask Him to give you energy, time, selflessness, patience, kindness and love.

Press deeper into the things that you long to run from. Be willing to ask yourself why you want to run. Be willing to recognize that your flight affects more than just you. Be willing to evaluate your motivation for running.

I don't think starting over is as romantic a notion as we long for it to be. I think we become new people without starting over. We become new people, fully aware of our journey that led us there...thankful for the experiences, the memories, the people who helped us along the way. We become new people, fully aware that it was beyond anything we could ever do on our own accord.

Be a new person. Be a better person.
You don't have to start over to do it. You don't have to run away.
Besides... starting over is virtually impossible (unless you're in a witness protection program).

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1 comment:

  1. Dang. This really applies to me. I want to run constantly.