What was the last leap of faith you took? I bet you were scared.
Maybe you’re taking a leap of faith right now. You’re starting a new season of life in a new job or at a new school or with a new partner. Maybe you’re learning how to live without someone you love, or you’re slowly letting go of a dear friend and companion. Maybe you’re making new friends, or you even signed up for a Blossom Pen Pal!
I hope your leap of faith is scary. Why? Because if you aren’t scared, then it isn’t a leap of faith. It’s you setting an achievable goal — which is good! Goals are great. Achieving them is awesome. But if your goals aren’t scary, they don’t require faith, trust, or even that big a leap.
I remember the biggest, scariest leap of faith I ever took. I briefly describe my experience living in foster homes in my book Growing Forward When You Can’t Go Back. Here’s an excerpt from Chapter 3: Digging Deeper with Hagar (one of my favorite chapters)…
My Scariest Leap of Faith
I ran away from home when I was thirteen years old in a most unusual way: by calling Social Services and talking to a social worker. My previous foster care experiences hadn’t just sheltered me, they taught me how to properly leave an unhealthy, abusive environment. I’d stayed in foster homes with compassionate parents, warm beds, well-stocked fridges, and school supplies. I’d already experienced—and wasn’t eager to relive—the adventure of sleeping in hard cardboard boxes in cold back alleys of big cities.
At home, my mom was disintegrating physically, emotionally, and mentally. She kept going on and off her medications because she didn’t like the uncomfortable and often harsh side effects of the powerful antipsychotic drugs. She was also trying to hold down a teaching job while raising two preteen girls as a single mom. Her struggle led to all sorts of unpleasant experiences at home, ranging from physical abuse with wooden sticks to culinary abuse with margarine sandwiches on stale white bread. I couldn’t live with her anymore, especially since she was getting better at hiding her illness from the doctors.
So I called a social worker for help. I knew there was always the possibility of ending up in an unhelpful or even abusive foster home. I’d heard they existed, but I knew staying with my downward-spiraling mom was riskier than running away.
Why Leaping in Faith is Scary
Leaps of faith feel risky, and they help you get closer to God. Pursuing a unique possibility — especially in a new season of life — changes how you see yourself and God. Taking a risk is your chance to learn how He leads and where He might want you to go next. When you avoid new possibilities, your heart grows cold, your spirit dull, your life flat. You can’t grow without taking leaps of faith, much less blossom into who God created you to be.
Maybe you’re stuck in a rut or struggling to let go of the past. Maybe you refuse to accept invitations or new ideas because you’re uncomfortable or afraid. Or, maybe you think taking a risk has to be big and scary, like quitting your job or moving to Africa. On the contrary! A leap of faith can be as simple as inviting a co-worker to lunch or joining a new church group.
How to Take a Leap of Faith
Create a one-week plan of small daily risks. For example:
- Monday – wear more colorful clothes to work. This is risky because you might attract attention or feel judged.
- Tuesday – start a conversation with someone you see often but don’t talk to. Risky because you’re reaching out to a stranger.
- Wednesday – take a fitness class you’ve never tried before. Risky because you’ll feel uncomfortable and won’t know what to do.
- Thursday – apologize to someone for losing your temper or breaking a promise. Risky because you’re admitting you were wrong.
- Friday – invite friends over for a meal you’ve never made. Risky because it may not be perfect and you might feel embarrassed.
Reflect after each leap of faith. Were you scared? How did God show up? Then, consider taking bigger leaps of faith that require you to rely on and trust God more than before.
For example, it’s a leap of faith for me to ask you to buy a copy of Growing Forward When You Can’t Go Back because I feel vulnerable and even a little embarrassed — even though it’s a wonderful book! It’s filled with insights and practical tips for walking into a new season of life, growing closer to God, and learning who you are and want to become. I believe this book will help you heal and move forward…and yet, it’s scary to ask you to buy it (and perhaps even leave a review on Amazon, to help other readers decide if it’s the book for them). Authors hold out their hearts when they share their writing with you. Be gentle, dear reader.
What leap of faith would you take if you weren’t scared? Write about it in the comments section below. How are you holding yourself back from becoming who God created you to be?
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New on She Blossoms
3 Reasons Not to Give Up on God – Genesis 48 – Are you ready to give up on God? Maybe you feel like He has already given up on you. Maybe you don’t believe God cares about what you’re going through. Perhaps you want to give up because you don’t feel Jesus’ love, comfort, or presence. I most want to give up on God when I feel abandoned and rejected, alone and unloved. In fact, I walked away from my faith when I was 17. I believed in Jesus, but refused to follow Him. I had no reason not to give up on God! I saw a million signs it was time to give up on my relationship with God and no reason to keep believing.
Stop Trying to Be Who God Created You to Be – Genesis 49 – “I’m trying so hard to blossom into who God created me to be,” said one of my She Blossoms readers. “But I don’t even know what that means anymore…and now becoming who God created me to be is harder than ever. It feels impossible. I want to stop trying.” Good for her! She should stop trying to be who God wants her to be. Instead of trying, straining, pushing, gritting her teeth and doing everything she can to blossom, she should stop. Take a deep breath. And relax into who God created her to be.
Getting Through Hard Times With Your Family – Genesis 47 – You’re in “survival mode” when your family is dealing with a health, financial or relationship crisis. These easy ways to get through hard times will help you and your family cope with the most painful, difficult seasons in life. I’m sharing easy tips because you need strength and energy to get through today. You don’t have the emotional, mental, spiritual or physical resources to start healing broken family relationships or even think about the best tips for dealing with controlling parents. You need hope, comfort, and support right now.