Claiming My New Frontier

Just to alert you: the word for the next few weeks or months for me seems to be Frontier. I may use it excessively.

A friend talked about self-disclaiming. That is the statement, image and feeling I had in mind as I wrote Caught in The Tail Lights and Seams to Me. ( I questioned yesterday why people resist applying biblical principles and resist establishing an irrevocable commitment to enter the new frontier of wholeness God is calling them to. Since asking the question, several bloggers and podcasters I’ve encountered have talked about fear. Most of us are more comfortable with what we know—no matter how bad—than venturing onto a new unknown.

A friend wrote on Facebook, “I’m so tired…. I’m such a loser and I’m tired of acting like I’m not. I’m drained from always having to put a disclaimer on myself. God, please make me whole.”  I’m urging a full commitment to the new frontier.

“How can we expect someone to give up a way of seeing and understanding the world that has physically, cognitively or emotionally kept them alive? None of us is ever able to part with our survival strategies without significant support and the cultivation of replacement strategies.” Brené Brown, Daring Greatly, (Hyperion, ©2012)

We have a list of reasons why the frontier—a new way of viewing and acting—is too risky and way too scary. A few knee-jerk reasons:

  • It doesn’t matter
  • It won’t help
  • It won’t work
  • I don’t have time
  • I’ve tried before
  • I’m too far gone
  • I’m the exception

Brené Brown quotes a student from her research on why people disengage and shut down:

“…most of us learn that it’s best to just keep your head down, your mouth shut, and your grades high.”  Ms. Brown observes, “…we can’t learn when our heads are down, and our mouths are shut.”

The past is gone. The life option is to enter the new frontier—reinvent yourself, let God remake you. You cannot keep tagging yourself with a disclaimer. That is not the person God had in mind. Put your body in the sandals of Abram as he hears God say, “I have a new land for you—it is an unknown frontier.  Come, let’s do it. Pack my promises and follow me.”

I imagined walking to the boundary line of the old and stepping onto the frontier. I wrote what I think I would need:

  1. Commitment—I’m going to cut loose and do this! I’m in! No matter what!
  2. Clarity—at this moment, what does a “new” life look like. (See WOOP below)
  3. Courage
  4. Compassion—I probably will chicken out, fail, bargain. I will need to have compassion for me—no name-calling, no cursing, no throwing myself away.
  5. Connection—I can’t do this alone. I’ll need 2-3 people who will support and encourage me. Someone I will talk to.

W—WISH. Be specific

O—OUTCOME. What do you desire to do? Change? Accomplish? Become?

O—OBSTACLES. What will lure you back to the old? What could stand in your way?

P—PLAN. What do you need to do each day to occupy the new territory?  (I know nothing of the foundation or philosophy of this organization. I like the acronym. You might find it helpful.)

©2015 D. Dean Benton—Writer, Wonderer, Quoter

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