Be fearless. It's a simple message, found on one of my new (to me) Rustic Cuffs.
Be fearless. As I've pondered its message, I realized it could be taken in two ways.
One as a directive to be brave and to try new things without fear.
That message encourages the wearer to approach life with gusto, without reservation.
We all know those people - who seem to always try the most outlandish feats. The ones who will climb the highest mountains or raft the deepest rivers.
I’ve lived that life at times.
I’ve gone white water rafting in West Virginia. I’ve kayaked in the Gulf of Mexico (off the coast of Florida). I put aside my absolute fear of heights to get on the ferris wheel in Branson.
I look back on many events in life and think “Wow, I did that. I was fearless.”
The second message though, comes in dissecting the word fearless.
Maybe instead of doing things that push us outside of our box, the phrase instead is designed to simply remind us to be brave.
To live a life where we fear - less, rather than more.
Fear-less. It’s easier said than done. Let’s face it. We all fear. In our adulting world, fear becomes worry.
We worry about our family members, we worry about bills, we worry, well about everything.
At times the fear becomes so strong, it rises from the bottom of our stomach, gripping us in the throat, making it impossible to breathe.
Reality disappears and in its wake, fear and its twin cousins worry and anxiety take rein in our lives.
I’ve really noticed the difference between the two definitions. In many ways, I’ve stepped into the “be fearless” role, as I began serving as the adviser of The Chart at Missouri Southern State University.
I’ve approached the task with gusto - and I’ll admit, with a bit of fear and trepidation - in the last few weeks.
Other pieces of my world though, have caused me to live in a state of fear.
It’s been a season of learning as God uses a variety of methods to get the simple message “pounded” into my head.
Rather than simply be fearless, I’m to live life with less fear and more trust.
It sounds easy, but I know it’s not. At times I have to stop, hit the reset button and remember to breathe.
I have to remember that fear brings with it mental lies, which bounce through my head more times than the best super ball.
During the summer, a friend wrote on Facebook how his then 3-year-old granddaughter reacted to a morning storm.
He recounted how as he was listening to the rain, a large thunder clap took place shaking the entire house.
He sat there, in his living room expecting to hear the fast pitter-patter of tiny feet running for his lap.
Instead the wee one did something different. She sat up in bed and simply yelled “NO.”
Rather than be scared of the weather, she chose to live with less fear. She was having nothing to do with the storm. It didn’t have a power over her.
I’ve thought a lot about that story - especially after getting my new bracelet.
Maybe there’s something to be learned from how that wee one reacted to the weather.
We should shout “no” to our fears, worries and anything that causes anxiety. Instead we should be fearless, and fear-less.
One of my favorite verses is from Proverbs 3:5-6: Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding; think about Him in all your ways, and He will guide you on the right paths. (HCSB).
Ultimately, living a fear-less life requires trust. It requires remembering that no matter what storms come into our world, there is a peace at the center. A peace which can only come from trusting in our faith.
Like the wee one. I’m striving to shout “no” to the storms of life, and live life with less fear. Ultimately, that’s the crux of “be fearless.” Live life, fear less. The best is yet to come.
How do you live out the motto “be fearless?” What will it take for you to fear less and trust more?
Kaylea M. Hutson-Miller is the managing editor of The Grove Sun and Delaware County Journal. Have an idea for a column or story? She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 918-786-2228.