Happy Anniversary to Ditching Comfort Zones

It is so hard for me to believe that one year ago I took the leap of faith and decided to open up and share myself, and my story, with the entire world through this blog. This past year has been an incredible journey, and I am so glad that y’all all shared along in the ride with me.

When I look back in hindsight, it’s crazy to think about how much changes in the process of a year. I’ve had a birthday, dyed my hair dark (then dyed it back to blonde), graduated college, began grad school (S/O to that current 4.0), gotten a job, moved to the DFW metroplex, went to Maryland, made new friends, had a couple heartbreaks, and have grown SO much as a person.

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Just an example of the difference a year can make

I began this blog not knowing where life was going to take me, and for the sake of transparency, that bugged me to no end. I can be so type-A, hearing what God wanted from me but not being able to see it caused some serious issues with me personally. I’ve opened up about this over the past year – how all I wanted was to know where God was going to take me but I didn’t want to share until I got there.

I’ve come to realize how wrong it was for me to think this way. Just because I firmly believe God is doing a great work in my life doesn’t mean I can’t share the journey along the way. Actually, it’s selfish of me to believe God is doing a great work in my life and not share it with others.

Walking forward and not knowing what lies ahead is intimidating. I think we all realize this. We like our comfort zones. We want to hold on to what we know. Comfort zones are the reason I held on to my old life so tightly the moment I realized God was telling me to let go. It’s a moment I will never forget.

Things were getting hard for me. I knew change was coming. I was in a time of what could be called “spiritual apathy” and I started trying to turn back to God for answers. I opened my devotional and read these words:

This is a time in your life when you must learn to let go: of loved ones, of possessions, of control. In order to let go of something that is precious to you, you need to rest in My presence, where you are complete.

This was all I could remember reading in that devotional. It was all that stuck out to me. I was furious with God. I was scared to death. I didn’t want to let go. I didn’t see what God could possibly have in mind for me letting go. There’s a picture on Pinterest of a little girl holding on to a teddy bear and not wanting to let go and Christ is standing in front of her with a larger teddy bear behind his back saying “trust me.” This was me.

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This is a simple (and somewhat silly analogy) but it speaks a large truth. I couldn’t let go.

Yet what I completely neglected was the second part of the same paragraph in that devotional:

As you relax more and more, your grasping hand gradually opens up, releasing your prized possession into My care.

I learned to let go. Letting go was by no means easy, the process took much longer than most realize, but every day I was able to move forward with the help of Christ. That’s how I ended up here. That’s how I started this blog. I let go, but I didn’t know where I was going to go next. So I started writing. I started sharing my experiences with the world, no matter how odd or how foolish they might have made me seem.

Realizing God was writing a story for my life totally unique and I was keeping it to myself ate me alive. I couldn’t stand not telling others about the work God was doing in my life. So I started writing.

Becoming the epitome of putting my heart on my sleeve was by no means easy. There have been plenty of times I thought “but what will this person think if they read this?” or “I wonder what perception this gives of me?” but I just kept writing.

This past year has been such an incredible and rewarding growth experience. I feel like it would sound silly to say this blog was me going beyond my borders, but to an extent it was. I have always been what you could call a “writer” but actually sharing my writings with other people, well that’s a whole different story.

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Yet blogging has helped that. I believe this blog has made me stronger as a person. It has helped me see the world in a different light. It has helped me tear down some of those walls I built after my life was unmade and share how God has helped me completely remake my life.

This is one of the greatest joys the past year has brought me. Beyond people telling me they loved certain posts or seeing which of my posts has the most reads, knowing that I’m truly sharing a story totally unique, entirely my own, and providing spiritual encouragement to those around me, that’s the reward of this blog.

For the past year I have thought if I could just touch one person through my writing, then I would have done my part. I don’t know who they are, but I hope they’re out there, and I hope I have provided them with any sense of encouragement and comfort they could need.

A little over two years ago I couldn’t let go. I couldn’t step out of my comfort zone and I wanted God to follow my plan for my life. By no means have I been on a blind journey, but I also know God called to a life where I absolutely have to place my trust in Him and Him alone. This has not been easy, but I have learned there is beauty in the unknown of this world. So I am going to keep running and chasing after it with all I have. Certain aspects of this process scare me to no end, but how else would I grow as a person? How else would I see all that God is capable of if I continue to limit Him to the confines of comfort zone?

Here’s to the next year of ditching comfort zones and seeing where God’s plan will lead me next! Happy anniversary gilliamgirl friends!

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