Are you ever paralyzed by fear, anxiety, indecision? I am often. Typically about silly things, but they never feel silly. EVERYTHING feels significant. These boots for instance...I needed a pair of functional boots: run errands in wet weather, play in the snow, keep my feet warm so I can keep up with life boots. However, the decision on what boots left me frozen. I couldn't make a decision. I wanted to be wise, I wanted them to solve multiple problems and I also wanted to like how they looked. Last night I found 3 pairs of boots and 1 pair of fleece boot socks sitting on the floor of my bedroom. Some had been there for 2 weeks! My daughter voted, my mom voted, my sister voted and my husband voted...enter silliness here! This morning I picked, I put them on and I walked outside in the snow to take out the trash. THERE, can't go back now!
I realized as I stood in the snow in my new boots that fear and anxiety held me back for weeks from enjoying this new gift of boots. This fear of making the wrong choice creeps in often in my life. Should I fold laundry and put it away or work out? Should I cook dinner during nap times and re heat or later in the afternoon? Should I go to the library the day our books are due or a few days before? Should I have play dates every day this week or just two? How many times a week should we have people over for dinner? How many times is too much stress on kids to travel to see my family? Is the sugar in yogurt healthy for kids or should we avoid it?
As I write this list I see the unimportant details of life that wage war on my heart and mind. I see the answers a little more clearly. I want things to be black and white. I want them to be wrong or right. I want a schedule, a routine and a task list that works every day or every week the same! It feels safe and I can be protected by routine. But, it imprisons me from experiencing much spontaneous joy in my kids idea to play freeze tag in the snow before breakfast! It holds me back from loving a friend who has had a hard day and needs to use my kids nap time to sit on my couch and cry and find community.
The truth I loose in these moments of indecision is that in Christ there is freedom to not be perfect. There is grace for mistakes and the ability to try again. There is a community of people to help me. But, if I don't ask for help, if I maintain the routine that protects me from mistakes and others than I am missing out on the joy God gives us in community, creation and life. If I refuse God's free gift of grace then I am missing out on Jesus and refusing to live a life changed by Him. Changed by truth!