Friday, February 13, 2009

Falling Doesn't Kill Us

I'd like to start with a little Jewish story:

A father was teaching his little son to be less afraid, to have more courage, by having him jump down the stairs. He placed his boy on the second stair and said, “Jump, and I’ll catch you.” and the boy jumped. Then the father placed him on the third stair, saying “Jump, and I’ll catch you.” Though the boy was afraid, he trusted his father, did what he was told, and jumped into his father’s arms. Then the father put him on the next step, and the next step, each time telling him, Jump, and I’ll catch you, and each time the boy jumped and was caught by his father. And so this went on. Then the boy jumped from a very high step, just as before; but this time the father stepped back, and the boy fell flat on his face. As he picked himself up, bleeding and crying, the father said, “that will teach you."

There is more than one way to interpret this, but let's focus on this interpretation: change will not kill you. It may end life as you currently know it, but it will not end your physical life.

In the story, the little boy would jump as long as he expected for his father to catch him. Until a change happens in your life, you will continue to do those things that are comfortable--those things that have predictable results. There is no need to try anything new or that will rock the proverbial boat. Life is stable, and you know what's expected of yourself and others.

Back to the story. When the little boy fell his world changed, because he learned that falling would not kill him. The fall did hurt, and he was definitely bruised, but he was still living. Through the fall, the boy became more alive than he was before it. Before the fall the little boy would only jump if he knew his father was there to catch him. As long as his father was there, he was assured that he would not get hurt or hurt in such a way that it would end his physical life; after the fall, he realized that although the fall was painful, it did not end his physical life.

How does this relate to changes in our lives? Some of us will not "jump" unless we are sure of the outcome. We continue to live life cautiously, doing no more than what is expected of us. However, when we make that jump that could cause us to fall, we learn there is more to us than even we expected. Our fall could hurt current relationships, how our peers see us, our current income, etc., but through the fall we realize that we are able to do those things we never thought we were capable of doing.

Here's an article for today:

What is Stopping You From Living Your Dream?

[A different note: Starting today, each entry will end with a scripture that may or may not relate to the topic. Hopefully it will be encouraging.]

And look out for one another's interests, not just for your own. (Philippians 2:4)

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