A Life Stirred

Heights, Grapes, and People

on September 22, 2013

I used to believe that I didn’t struggle with fear.

Heights don’t freak me out. In fact, I actually kind of enjoy them.

Proof: Those are my feet.

Proof: Those are my feet.

I don’t love spiders, but who really does?  I can remain calm and squish ‘em with a shoe, no problem! (Earwigs are a different story…EEeeeewwww!)

I don’t necessarily sign up for public speaking, but when the opportunity arises, I can handle it (I only get a little sweaty).

And I can look at this picture without panicking:

I was in a small group where we read Fearless by Max Lucado.  We spent nearly every week discussing the fear of small children and grapes.

I was in a small group where we read Fearless by Max Lucado. We spent nearly every week discussing the fear of small children and grapes.

But it turns out I do struggle with fear.  It’s just not a very obvious fear, and I hide it pretty well.

I have a fear of man.

Yup, I care waaaaay too much about what people think about me.

Case in point: this blog.  I wrote my first entry on Thursday, and I posted it that night.  I went to bed confident that this was going to be fun and that I could be part of the blog world.  I woke up on Friday morning convinced that I had nothing to offer, that I’d be a big-blog-flop, and that everyone would think I was ridiculous for thinking I could do this.

So, what happened between Thursday night and Friday morning?

Well, other than spending 3am to 7am with my awake-for-no-reason toddler, nothing!  I just allowed myself to give into fear of what others’ think.

This fear is deeply rooted (thankyouverymuch, 6th-8th grade and my pride), and it holds me back.  It holds me back from being true to myself.  It holds me back from sharing my faith.  It holds me back from admitting that I don’t have it all together.  It holds me back from putting myself out there.  It sometimes even holds me back from just sitting and enjoying my kiddos.

I don’t want this fear to rule my life.  I want to be bold.  I want to take risks for the Lord.  Heck, I just want to do what He asks me to without being afraid of what people think of me.  I want to live a Radical life.  (Aaah!  Such a good book.  Read it now.  Like right now.  Go.)  I have such a long way to go.

But with the Lord’s help, I’m taking steps towards freedom.  I’m putting myself out there (a little) by being real and honest on this blog.  I’m taking a deep breath and inviting my facebook friends to read here as well.  And let’s be real, that basically includes everyone I know.  <gulp>  It is my prayer that stepping out of my comfort zone will decrease my fear and increase my faith!

What about you?  What are you afraid of?  And how has the Lord worked to bring you freedom?

[In writing this, I realized I also struggle with the Fear of Failure.  It’s closely related to the Fear of Man.  Like Fear Cousins.  But more on that later…maybe.]

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10 responses to “Heights, Grapes, and People

  1. rmfowler90 says:

    Excellent Carley!! I can relate to the holding me back part!! I’ve struggled with a fear of failure . . . more failure in my own eyes than in others . . . for years. A few years ago God really did a work in that area and now I’m so much freer than I was when I struggled with it. There are still times when it rears its ugly head a bit more than it should but I’m way better with it, through the Lord’s strength, than at any other point in my life. You keep doing what you are doing and you’ll keep growing.

    • carleymorse says:

      Praise God! He is good to free us from our bondage. We really just have to take steps of obedience and trust Him. I’m hoping that’s true for our current study as well. 🙂

  2. Denise says:

    Great job, Carley! We all struggle with fear in different ways. For me…grapes set me in a panic…I still cut ’em up for Clara and she’s 4! But this is after she did have a chocking incident a few months ago…so I feel a bit justified…it was a scary two seconds! Yes, Phil agrees, that I’m just a neurotic mess when it comes to the kids…I was a basket case the first time Darla drove Micah to youth group. Now I forget about it…most of the time 😉

    • carleymorse says:

      Yeah, choking incidents with grapes seem to be pretty common. Common enough that I’m always a little nervous about Jo and grapes. But she loves them so!

      Having kids has totally opened my eyes to other fears I have. Like fear of the flu. Yick.

  3. Liz Andretta says:

    Great job! I am excited to read more of the Carley world. You are truly gifted in knowing people and working through obstacles. I am glad you are sharing your heart and your witty sense of humor. I also here the fear or man can decrease with age. I think that it has more to do with experiences. Either way, your confrontation of your fear is great. Fear of failure is definitely my big fear. It can relate to fear of man too, but it more that it keeps me from risk taking. I want to be good at what I do right away, so I don’t keep trying if I don’t think I am good at it. I see it mirrored in my Isaac. I wanted to share because you asked us to.

    • carleymorse says:

      Aww, thanks, Liz! I’m hoping that my fear of man will decrease with age, but I’m nearly 30. Shouldn’t it be gone by now? HA!

      And oh dear, fear of failure. For a competitive person like me, you can be sure that I struggle with that. Who wants to lose?!

  4. Carly, I already love your blog. Please don’t stop writing. 🙂

    The “fear of man” thing is a struggle for a lot of people, often more so than we realize. I’m so thankful God is faithful to gently reveal things to us in the process of refining us to be more like Him! From glory to glory!

    • carleymorse says:

      Thanks, Penney! I appreciate the encouragement. It helps me to combat the fear.

      I do love that the Lord reveals things to refine us. I’m currently working on being obedient to work on what he reveals. I’d kind of just like to say, “Yup, fear of man. I’ve got it. Let’s just ignore that, ok?” But I am thankful God doesn’t let me get away with that. 🙂

  5. Allie says:

    Love this!
    I, too, have a fear of letting myself get “out there.” The whole nonexistent blog “comfort zone” thing is freaking me out, and I’m still scrounging up enough courage to share my blog on Facebook and around my friends… o.O (Among many other fears, of course… :p )
    I posted something on the similar side of this lovely topic recently. It’s about vulnerability. Great minds, I guess… 😉

    • carleymorse says:

      Dude, Allie. I totally get that. I posted mine on facebook, and then had a slight heart attack. But I’ve been shocked at the feedback! Apparently, there was nothing to be afraid of. And I guarantee that the same goes for you. I enjoy your blog a lot (just read the vulnerability post…awesome!)…it’s great to hear your heart. Facebook needs more posts like that shared…and less videos of cats doing silly things (though those can be fun too).

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