Stepping Out of My Comfort Zone
Recently I went out of town by myself for an extended period of time. This was a time to experience the Father at deeper levels and grow in my relationship with Him. I had not ever been this far away from home on my own and while I enjoyed my trip and loved the quiet time with the Lord I missed my family and friends a great deal. The truth is, that as the trip neared the end, I was trying to figure out how I could come home a little sooner. I was tired. I felt slightly isolated because I was so far away from the people I love, and even at the end I was having to do new things everyday because this was a new place. Did I mention new things can be hard? Each day I had to choose to step out of my comfort zone and meet new people, sit with and possibly have uncomfortable conversations, and go to new places if I wanted to be around and see new things.
There was a day I needed a couple of things and decided that Target would be the simplest place to go and get them. I knew from previous experience that all Targets are basically the same. As I walked into the big store I was greeted with everything that I love about Target. All the departments were in the exact same place. Immediately I felt great comfort because this place was familiar and I knew that I would be able to find anything I needed in a short amount of time because this was a place that I knew well. I didn’t have to be uncomfortable here because I didn’t have to learn anything or ask questions. I felt ease.
I was talking to the Lord about Target and thanking Him for this place of comfort and familiarity. It was so good to be in a place that I felt like I knew. Immediately I heard Holy Spirit say, “familiar places do feel comfortable don’t they?” Yes Lord they do. “You know all the things about them.” Yes Lord. Then this, “Are you learning anything new in a familiar place?” What? This is Target, but I knew what He was saying. Had I not gone 1500 miles from home and spent the last two weeks seeking His face and stepping out, forever changed, I would not understand my limits of comfortable and how far past them I could go. I know that I am called to be stretched and moved and to do things that make me uncomfortable. We all are. These moments can leave me worn smooth out, drained and exhausted. More truth, sometimes it is easier to go back to the familiar places, old habits things that may not be wrong but they don’t call us to our place as sons and daughters, heirs to God’s kingdom. What I know is that while I was uncomfortable it always called me higher and closer to Him. I knew that God was wooing me and there was safety in stepping out. I want to live my life as a reflection of who He says I am. He says that I am a priest, an heir, that I am royalty (2Peter 2:9) and I would like to suggest that royalty does not shrink back but they step out boldly. Could I have made a mistake? Yes, the truth is I could have stumbled, and I have; but I knew that if I was obedient to what God was asking me to do I could do all things (Philippians 4:13). Albert Einstein said, “A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.”
What is Holy Spirit asking you to do today? It probably will feel uncomfortable, but maybe someone today needs to hear that God loves them, or maybe a neighbor needs help with a project. It could be something as simple as smiling at a stranger, or hugging somebody in the grocery store. There are so many possibilities. Don’t limit yourself. The Bible says, “But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers only who delude themselves” James 1:22. Everyday we are called to be the hands and feet of Christ. To go higher and take risks, and while I am guilty of allowing myself to get in the way I am becoming more and more aware of the places that can be stretched and places that God is wanting to grow in my life. It is a choice to step out, and to move away from a place of safety. Each day I have to decide to be obedient and follow the example of Christ. When I do, it not only impacts me, but others around me.
Today I am praying for you that as you make the choice to move out of your comfort zone that you will feel the God of peace and know that He is with you. I pray that in your obedience that boldness will rise up and the fear of failure has to leave in Jesus Name. I thank the Father for you and bless each of you.