We went ice skating last night.
I only fell once.
I stayed near the edge most of the time. I figured it out a little more, but I didn't ever venture out to the middle, nor did I go fast.
I was afraid.
Every time I started sliding, I would feel like I was slipping and was going to fall, so I'd stop myself and hold on to the edge.
I was afraid.
Afraid of what? Of falling.
Falling isn't actually that bad.
I missed out on the fun of gliding across the ice simply because I was too fearful to take the risk of falling. Someone from our group came up to me and after trying to help me figure out the technicalities of ice skating, told me that I was living in fear and not love and that is what my problem was. He then laughed a bit and said, "I'm not one of those scammers, I mean it. That really is your problem." (or something like)
I smiled and thought about it, and he was right. I tried to loosen up, to not hold on so much.
But I still stayed near the edge.
And my focus was still on not falling, on getting it RIGHT. Not on ice skating.
We left, and on the ride home we were talking about various things--mainly God stuff. I mentioned that I learned a lot when I was ice skating, and it wasn't about ice skating--it was about me.
I really do live in fear.
I hide it so well that I am only just beginning to find it in myself, or rather God is just beginning to show me it. It's so deep down and I hide it so well that I don't even realize it's there. And yet, it is. And it hinders me in my life. I'm afraid.
Afraid to love, afraid to live whole-heartedly, afraid to be me, afraid to--ice skate.
Because I don't want to fall down. I don't want to get hurt. I don't want to look foolish.
So I stay near the edge, and I only fall down once or twice. And I never get to the middle. I don't feel the pleasure of gliding across the ice, of living whole-heartedly.
And then one of my team mates quoted Star Wars to me, and said that is what he remembered when he was figuring out skating... it was something along the lines of, "The reason we fall is so we can get back up again."
We also talked about love--God's love. God was showing me last night that He stands between us and our adversaries... We don't have to be afraid. He intercedes for us; He defends us; He LOVES us. He made us, He bought us. We are His.
And He won't let us fall down anymore than is absolutely necessary to help us learn.
So... I'm learning to live in love, slowly. When I feel that fear rising up, I remind myself of the One who ever lives to plead for me. And in that knowledge, in His love, I am free.
Free to fall down, because after you fall He helps you to your feet again.