I've always had this weird fear of flying things hitting me.
I don't know exactly the source of this fear... I think that perhaps I was struck by flying spinach while innocently eating my PBJ at La Cresta Elementary school lunch. Or maybe it was the time that riding my bike across the driveway, I was decapitated (metaphorically) by the kite string of my little brother. Or perhaps it was the bird droppings from my long summer days hanging out in the barn.
So today, as I pedaled my bike down the wide and windy beach, I was fear-struck once again by flying things. Then, it seemed, the gull was after me. It all turned out okay when, with quick reaction, I turned my bike away from feathered disaster.
Still, I consider how this last year as a Chaplain has presented me with many opportunities to face my fears. Fears of extreme expressions of grief? Well, here's a family or two (or three or four) to face and to comfort and to be present with. Fears of imagining my sister in the ICU? Well, here's someone just like her in the bed, with similar fears herself! Just show up and be real. Fears of falling off the road bike while flying down the mountain pass? Well, join me in the trauma bay to find out how this turns out...
Thanks to Spirit, as long as I remain awake to my fears, they will remain awake to me. I don't think that God puts me up to a test. Nope, I just think that as long as I remain aware of my fears then I will continually face them until I can integrate them into who I am and claim them as mine.
So even on vacation this week, I get to stay awake and aware. You never know what might fly down and touch you!
John clinched his witness with this: "I watched the Spirit, like a dove flying down out of the sky, making himself at home in him. I repeat, I know nothing about him except this: The One who authorized me to baptize with water told me, 'The One on whom you see the Spirit come down and stay, this One will baptize with the Holy Spirit.' That's exactly what I saw happen, and I'm telling you, there's no question about it: This is the Son of God." John 1:32 (The Message)
What's keeping you awake this moment?