It's a Bird... It's a Plane... No - It's your Farmer
Let’s talk about your fear: and why your Farmer is flying.
Everyone has it. (fear that is… the flying farmer part is a bit more rare)
Some of us have lots. Some of us have a little.
Some push through it.
Some fetal-position under it.
Some deny it.
Some are consumed by it.
Mine might be silly to you.
Yours might be completely fabricated.
Whatever the case: We all have it; we all have to decide what to do with it.
Do we invite fear to stay?
Put fresh sheets on the guest bed for it?
Maybe we put fear on repeat… marinating our brains in terror wondering what negative thing is lurking behind the next bend.
Maybe you can ignore it? Does that work?
The room’s elephant isn’t there if you close your eyes, right?
Unfortunately, fear doesn’t just stay in the mind. Fear’s emotional triggers literally ripple through our physical body.
In essence, fear leaks.
Clinical psychologists explain that although “fear is experienced in your mind,... it triggers a strong physical reaction in your body.” We’ve all heard of fight or flight... It’s actually a real thing.
Fear triggers physical changes that fill your body with stress hormones, raise your blood pressure, increase your heart rate, make you breathe faster, and change your blood flow away from your heart into your limbs.
“As some parts of your brain are revving up, others are shutting down…” (Like your reasoning and judgment capabilities.) “...so now it’s difficult to make good decisions or think clearly.”
If fear affects us so greatly, it’s probably a good idea to pay attention to what we do with it.
What does this have to do with your flying farmer? Basically everything.
After 16 years of learning, I’ve discovered that some boys were made to fly. Your farmer is one of them.
Ever since I met him, he has longed for the sky.
For many years of our marriage, I let the fear of losing him discourage me from thinking about his desire to fly. I let fear keep me from even thinking about it past a quick “nope”.
So what on earth are we doing?? Good question.
Sometimes I ask myself the same question and it beckons me back to a pivotal decision I made a few years ago. Jonathan’s bday was approaching and I couldn’t think of the perfect gift to give him. In brainstorming about his birthday, I conceded that the one thing he probably wanted above all else was the ability to fly. Not that he needed my permission to do so, but it is significantly more fun to pursue something if your spouse is on board.
The next question that popped into my head was: “how do I want him to die”.
No - I wasn’t planning his death. I was forcing myself to be honest with my fears.
Truth was, I didn’t want Jonathan to die a regretful, earth-stuck old man just because I was too fearful to “let” him fly. I would rather him die completely fulfilling who God made him to be in all the great (and sometimes crazy) ways.
With that decision made, I wrapped up some money (and permissive “blessing”) for his birthday and decided that I would never discourage him from flight again.
Over the years, his desire for flight has taken on different avenues from pilot lessons, to ultralights, to the most recent: paragliding.
After I survived a year of mild heart attacks caused by watching trial-and-error wing practice, Jonathan assured me that he was ready to take to the skies.
For paragliding, this means strapping a giant motorized propeller to your back to launch yourself off the ground. We contacted several MN trainers throughout the year but training with them never worked out.
Everyone loves a good Youtube-education, and you can call me old fashioned, but landing safely was pretty high on my priority list for Jonathan, even though he assured me that he really thought he could land.
Fast forward a few months, and our good friends (who ironically are also interested in paragliding) were headed to Florida for family vacation. (Florida is a common destination for training because the consistent wind on the beach helps to learn.) Long story short, they invited us to visit them on vacation, after which we discovered that there was a paragliding instructor just 15 minutes from where they were staying.
I guess you could say the rest is history… and we’re so thankful our husband’s aren’t history.
Andy and Jonathan took the lessons, learned how to fly, (and LAND), without any dying involved.
Was I still fearful? You bet. But I don’t want fear to cripple me.
If you’ve read 2 Timothy, you’re familiar with the verse that says that God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. I want to operate out of power, love and a sound mind. A sound mind is not controlled by fear. It is not crippled by ‘what ifs’.
If you’re like me, you don’t want to be crippled. Let’s not be crippled together. And let’s not cripple our families with fear. Let's live with power, love, and a sound mind!
Is this easy? Yeah right! Of course it isn’t easy. But it is good.
How about you?
What will you do with your fear today?
Maybe it's time to make your fears fly.
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Ready for some fresh milk?? Yes Please!