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day 37: Being okay with not knowing

Fremantle Prison, 13th of Feb. 2016

Today I did something that scared the hell out of me. I drove by myself to a classroom, in a prison, to sit and learn all day about the art of photography. I am not a photographer, I much more prefer to align myself with the category of writer, yet in this world of online publishing and the many different forums of communication, photography is imperative.

Lately I have been preferring the hat of Novice Mum above any other titles that may fit me this season. Three years ago, that title overwhelmed every part of me, yet today as Maximus is getting close to four years old, I am so grateful for the lessons found in the ordinary, everyday of motherhood and married life.

I am realising though, that every time I settle in my life, every time I get a little comfortable, God stretches my comfort into a place of growth. Enter today. As I sat up the back of the classroom, the whip around began with everyone explaining what they do and why they were in the class. A deep part of me wanted to hide today away in the darkness of the prison cells and listen carefully to the finer details of digital photography. I wanted to shrink, because there is so much that I just don’t know. Most of the time, here on this blog and in my creative walk, I am just totally winging it. Most of the time, I am very uncertain, but I just keep on saying yes and figure the rest out on the fly.

Do you shrink back from new opportunities or environment because you just don’t know?

Are you embarrassed when you want to learn about new things, but don’t step in the arena because you might just fail?

This is a place of decrease, that we all struggle with. The place in our worlds where it is okay to be uncertain, it’s okay to be the person with the least connections on Linkedin. It is okay to just not know.

It is okay to not have the next five years mapped out.

It is okay to not have your meal plan colour coded for your families health.

It is okay to start something that you have never tried before with the potential of failure looming.

Humility is a vivid place of the unknown, when we step softly into places that we don’t have the map and directions for and start to learn again. My little children remind me of this all the time, whenever they learn a new skill or a new word. Whenever they discover a part of the earth that they never knew existed, the pure joy they have in discovery. They never question whether it is okay for them to explore, they just step into the ring of knowledge and dig up it’s archeological finds.

When we place ourselves in positions of learning, when we place ourselves in environments of uncertainty, we place ourselves in spaces of decrease and it is so very formational for our soul.

When was the last time that you admitted to someone that you just don’t know the answer?

When was the last time you did something for the first time?

When was the last time you asked for help?

We decrease in these places of growth and God is always leading us to uncharted and uncomfortable waters. Growth is not easy, it is painful and often discouraging. In fact today I have come away with more questions about photography than answers, but I feel so deeply grounded and satisfied.

I sat in a room with twenty people who don’t know me at all.

I listened to an expert in the field and marvelled at his skill and knowledge.

I floated into the background and took steps towards uncovering potential in my own life that has the absolute opportunity of glorifying God and his beautiful creation. My heart and life was re-calibrated today by the magnitude of creativity and the potential to bring connection and life to people I will never meet.

What if my uncertainty brought certainty to someone about the presence and power of God?

Every time we learn and place ourselves in positions of learning, we have the capacity to bring radical freedom into our future. When we become okay with the fact that we indeed do not know everything and indeed are in need of help, the awakening of the new is breathtaking.

This is the magic of creativity.

This is the beauty of allowing ourselves to be used by One who is far greater than us alone.

This is the sheer complexity of humility.

When we decrease so He increases, everything changes.

Day 37: I am learning to be okay with not knowing but getting in the arena anyway.




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