Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.anais nin
One of my favorite teaching questions is, “So what?” At the end of this lesson, at the end of this project, at the end of this Boundary Waters trip. . . what is the big take away? What does this mean for living? Why even write about it?
For me, the So What lies in little daily moments of courage. It’s not all about thrill-seeking or cliff jumping (which actually can cause you to break your tailbone according to my hairdresser). It’s about small acts of courage done day in and day out.
What is the thing in my life today that is asking me to be just a little bit bolder, to step out with just a little more courage? Is it a phone call that needs dialing? A card that needs sending? A meeting that needs scheduled? A long-overdue conversation that can start with just a sentence pushed from my mouth? What might it look like to take one tiny step toward the thing that needs doing, taking the courage that’s being handed to us, if we dare to look for it in unexpected ways?
Daily courage doesn’t need to be dramatic. Just the other day I took my kids to the Lincoln Zoo. I didn’t realize the new addition included a water feature. “Can we play in it mama?” they said while pulling my arms toward the water. My worried brain started in its normal circles. . . “Maybe just get your feet wet.” “We can’t spend all day here we won’t get to all the zoo.” “We should have brought our swim suits. . . “
Instead of going down those normal patterns, for some reason–maybe this trip–I had a little more courage to lean over, look them in the eye and say, “Go for it.”
No one melted. No one cared that Oliver had on see-through-when-wet yellow cotton shorts. And no car seats were harmed by being a little wet. Instead, I got a chance to sit back and watch these beautiful little humans living life, to watch them splash and play and run. I am grateful for Boundary Waters 2019. For the time away that reminds me and wakes me up to the time we have together, for my own boundaries stretched, my sense of what’s possible still growing. Amen.