So, you know that feeling when you’ve had an idea sitting in the back of your head for a while, months, even years, and it finally happens?
It’s almost unbelievable. You sit back and think–wow, I did that thing.
So, a few weeks ago, I was in Hawaii with hubs, and he (with great fear and trembling) suggested that we finally, finally do that THING–meaning, GO SCUBA DIVING. See, he’s a certified diver, but alas, I have this fear of closed places. And while the OCEAN is hardly a closed place, for some reason breathing through a tiny tube feels VERY confining.
But, I had done an introductory dive in a POOL about a year ago and I’m tired of always watching the fun stuff…so I did it.
Went 40 feet down, breathed out of a tube and discovered that I was braver than I thought. (and really, SCUBA diving is a little like flying…underwater, but with air…through a little tube…)
This is me, AFTER the event. Still alive. Grinning.
The Bible says, A longing fulfilled is sweet to the soul…and friends, this was sweet.
But I learned a couple things, too:
- Life is meant for DOING, not watching. For years, I’d dreamed and imagined what it would be like to SCUBA dive. But doing it opened a new world to me. I had to ask myself…was I willing to be brave?
- As I descended into the depths, God was there. I crawled down this rope to the depths, equalizing my pressure as I went, trying not to give into the crazy panic filling my chest. And praying. With every handhold, I discovered just enough grace not to freak out. Just enough courage to keep going.
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
- I stopped thinking about my fears, and what I couldn’t do—or even that I WAS doing it, and just started enjoying. Yeah, it was an accomplishment, but really—the point was to get down there with the sea creatures and marvel. And as soon as I took my eyes off the scary stuff…I started to see the beauty of the ocean. I swam about a foot from a sea turtle, covered in yellow fish. Found a tiny octopus. Followed a parrot fish.
- And I forgot I was ever scared. In fact, when I came to the surface, my first thought was—when can we go again?
See, leaping out in faith is not only empowering, but it opens new worlds.
Have you ever taken a leap of faith, done something terrifying only to discover it was exactly what you’d hoped—and more? That’s a little like it felt when I started writing, too…taking that leap of faith, hoping I didn’t lose my regulator and drown.
What is God calling you to be brave about right now? What is holding you back?
Isn’t it time to fly?
P.S. I recently took a giant step of bravery and launched into a series about smokejumpers, an idea that go while visiting the Missoula Hotshots/Smokejumpers base a few summers ago.
Since then, my brain has been peculating an idea about a series about smokejumpers, and a group of wildland firefighters who come together during one very hot summer to save lives, fall in love, and find faith. The FIRST of this series Where There’s Smoke releases May 31st and kicks off a trilogy of epic adventure romances called the Montana Fire series.