My imagination runs. And not down the “how cool it would be path”. Not the path of, wonder and awe. Not the path full of light and adventure. Not down the path where I conquer my uncertainty, pushing to impossible heights. Nope, not today. Today my imagination runs down a different path, almost as if I am being drug against my will. As soon as I take the slightest peek down this dark, foggy almost swampy path, peering with slight hesitation, I feel something clutch my wrist and I am pulled along this rocky, yet muddy, cold wet road. The grip on my wrist is tight and at first I fight it hoping to run back to a different path, but it drags me further and further, gaining speed till my legs struggle to keep pace of whatever is dragging me. I reach to pry its cold boney clutch, when I see something that catches my eye. I stop resisting and I take a closer look. It is my failures. Failures from my past all piled up and yet I can see them individually. Moments later my attention is pulled to the right of the path where there is a different pile of failures, it is those I might end up making in the future. Not wanting to stay there I follow, almost willingly, this icy pull again on my wrist. Moments later I see so much sadness, it is heart wrenching. But what is it. I indulge my imagination and realize my family is in pain, crying, I am not even sure what they are crying about, so to help me out my imagination comes up with all the possibilities it could be to fill in the blanks. Someone could be hurt physically or emotionally, perhaps a car accident, a divorce or a terminal illness. The grip pulls at my wrist again, as I look down at my wrist I realize it is fear. Fear has a tight grip and is pulling me further down this path and my imagination keeps allowing it to pull me deeper until we reach my deepest fear. I almost can’t bear to see the scene, but I glance and in just one moment is it too late. My fear and imagination have become extremely powerful as a duo. The tragedies I witness bring me to my knees and I wonder just how long I will be able to stay conscious before my body shuts down in overwhelming emotion. I have experienced this before. When my fear joins forces with my imagination, when I let it run long enough I am incapacitated, a total slave to the fear and “what if’s” swirling around me. As the darkness comes, worry and despair seep over this road I have wandered way too far down. It is a thick sludgy substance engulfs me on my knees. As this worry and despair begin to flood my body I can feel myself fading. And in that moment I reach up, pleading to heavens that this insanity would not overtake me. Somewhere in the far of distance I hear a quite urging. Let them go. Why? Why would I let them go? I knew he was talking about my children.
“I don’t know that you will protect them.” I yelled into the middle of these woods. “In fact it has become quite clear to me that you will allow them to endure more than I would ever be willing to let happen.” I almost sneered. “So Why? Tell me, tell me why? I would love to trust you, but honestly I don’t.” I said with less resentment, just matter of fact.
“Because if you don’t this fear will consume you and you will die before your time.” The small urging, almost voice pressed on my heart.
“Seriously! Is that all you have for me! Come on! Give me something good.” I cried in desperation.
There the small presence was again, only its presence seemed a little stronger this time. This time sending me the message, “Although you can’t see, I can. My heart aches for your pain, but I can see victory in the end, however, there is yet a victory now, and that is you.”
“Your heart aches for me. Ha! I doubt it. If it did you would do something for me.” My voice riddled with pain and bitterness.
“There is a treasure. A treasure you can’t yet comprehend, but if you trust me it will keep unfolding to you. There is a rainbow at the end of this flood. And though your seas are rough, I have made you to walk on water, you know this. I told you this years ago, and in that moment so long ago, you believed me. It is ok that you don’t believe be now. I can understand what it must look like from your perspective, but from mine…well you will see. But right now I need you to see something.
“See what?” I questioned this voice, wondering what it would possibly show me that would help right now.
“You need to realize that fear is not gripping your wrist Jamie. You are gripping the wrist of fear. If you let go of fear. I can show you things.” This voice was now almost audible adorned with peace and strength both at the same time.
“I am not really sure I want you to show me. I don’t like your plan! I told you this, your plan SUCKS!” As soon as I utter the words, I realize, I really do think his plan sucks at the moment, but I still believe in him. So for a moment I am tempted to relinquish my grip on fear. For a moment I am contemplating letting go and trusting his words are true. Ya know, about the rainbow and me walking on water.
“Before I let go I need you to promise me one thing!” I pleaded.
“Because I can’t bear it any other way, and I don’t feel it is too much to ask. Please, just as you have shown up for me in my darkest of places and made yourself so real to me, please show up for my kids. I don’t know what adversities lie ahead of them, so please, get in their ear. When they are clutching to fear and experiencing this insanity I never want them to know, please promise me, you will make yourself real to them. I can only teach them so much, but I know if they can feel you and hear you, then they can walk though their own trials. I can’t be right there for them all the time, and I know sometimes you have had to show yourself to me in a way I could see you and hear you. Please, do this one thing for me. Do whatever it takes to show them you are there in the midst of everything. And then, I feel I can begin to release my grip on this fear.
To my readers: I hope you hear the message of hope. My fear can be scary, but I do my best to latch on to my faith to carry me through. Here is a song that I have been clinging to lately, hope it will help others.