Monday, May 12, 2014

Worry, Peace, and Obi-Wan Kenobi

I've blogged recently. I haven't posted anything publicly though. It's not that I don't want any of it to be read, it's that I haven't wanted to post anything they only tells half a story. Sometimes, things happen in your life that aren't blog-able.

That being said, I'm here to talk about half a story.

I've mentioned that life has been hard recently in my last couple posts. Things are less hard right now.  I'm in a new phase and I'm grateful for that. Things are different. Of course, I still have challenges, but they're new (and less exhausting/draining than the last ones).

Let's talk about worrying. I've come to realize that worry is my comfort zone. Why would something so stressful and even painful be my comfort zone? I'm not really sure. But sometimes I think we attach ourselves to things just because they're familiar, not because they've got any value. Worry is familiar. I know how to worry, I know how to cry, how to feel, how to attach myself to things in a way that allows me to care from a safe, worry-filled distance.

And then there's peace. Peace is something I've felt and experienced before. I love peace. But it's actually completely out of my comfort zone. I don't know how to simply be at peace and not worry. So much so that I begin to worry about whether or not I should be worrying any time I'm not worried. (How's that for mental exhaustion.)

Recently, I've felt a lot of peace. It has been very uncomfortable. Contradictory? Yep. Am I worried about it? Actually, no.

Months ago, I was talking to my dad about a really concerning challenge in my life. The advice he gave me (as well as the advice is received through prayers and blessings) was to be at peace. I told him I didn't know how. The idea of figuring out how to do that stressed me out in all kinds of non-peaceful ways.

Then, my dad said "Stop thinking, Luke. Feel." Perhaps not a direct Obi-Wan quote, but definitely a true principle. (And who doesn't love life lessons from Star Wars?) He was referring to Luke learning how to use the force. Here's a real quote: "Let go of your conscious self and act on instinct."

If I've learned anything in the last 6 months, I've learned that there is so much more than what we think we know or "get". The way to be at peace is a lot less about a step-by-step list and a lot more about letting go of your conscious self and allowing yourself to simply be in a place of peace. It's about going to the Prince of Peace. Letting go in a way that requires complete trust.

There are a lot of things I don't know. And a lot of things that I'd realllllly like to understand. But for the moment, I'm okay with this out of my comfort zone stage because I'm learning that there is actually a lot more genuine comfort that comes from trust and from allowing yourself to be at peace.

And as I type that, I think my favorite part is that I'm learning. That feels a lot more like progress than a consistent feeling of "being okay". Learning feels like more.

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