The family I grew up with was one of those who would travel just one path from A to B with no plans for diversions. Dreams were meant for sleeping. Even when we were offered a different path, another member of the family always managed to pull us back into that ‘normal’ path because anything that is outside of our normal every day life was just too risky. Anyone with any ambitions would be discouraged immediately and so no one in this childhood family of mine ever really made it big.
During one of my personal quiet moments with the Lord, I came to the realisation that our family has a huge cloud called fear looming over our heads. Fear of failure, fear of being cheated, fear of discrimination, fear of trying something new, fear of cleaning up the mess after a failed attempt to do something big, fear of anything outside the family. Even when opportunities were presented to us, we’d reject them because we were afraid they were just someone’s attempt to put one over on us. Nothing was ever that good to be true.
As a result, I grew up to be an adult who didn’t (sometimes, still don’t) want to try anything at all. I hated mess-management, so much so that there was a time when I didn’t allow my kids to do arts and crafts because I didn’t want to have to clean up after them! But that’s just one area of my kids’ childhood that I almost destroyed due to my inherited fear of risk and new things.
It takes a lot for me to actually write about this. First of all, there’s the shame and then there’s the sad, sad feeling that countless opportunities just flew past our heads because we were too busy looking at our feet as we walked the ‘normal’ path. I can’t let this happen to my kids. They have so much in them that they can give to the society right now and in the future and I must not stop them just because I’m afraid they might fail.
From that same quiet moment, I also realised that the generations before me must’ve had their reasons to be afraid of taking a leap in a different direction. But I must not let their reasons be my reason. I’m privileged to have seen the power of God’s hand in my life and the life of my own family. I am blessed with my faith in God who will work things out for me as long as my heart is for Him and as long as I seek His kingdom first.