by Dayna E. Mazzuca
OUT OF MY COMFORT ZONE
As long as I can remember, I've said I would NEVER do the following Three Things:
- Pay big money to learn how to write. (As a published writer, I figured money should be coming in as a result of my writing; I shouldn't be putting "out").
- Take an online course where I was back in the Student's Seat. (I've gone to school for a long time, so if I'm going to learn more, I want it to be in person and through God's person-to-person anointing).
- Embrace Social Media. (No fan of SM, I was simply hoping to avoid it as long as possible).
THEN - I felt God nudging me to sign up for an online learning course that cost a pretty penny and guaranteed to teach me more about SM.
Hmmm... why does God do this? Why does he nudge us directly into the thing we are avoiding? I do not know... BUT! I signed on, paid up, learned lots and couldn't be more pleased with the outcomes, especially with my new website and spoken poetry blog! The course has been great, everything from online mentorship (including phone calls from the instructors) to an online student support and critique group. Amazing stuff! Praise the Lord.
GOD TAKES US OUT OF OUR COMFORT ZONES FOR 2 REASONS.
1. The first reason is to show us new things; to take us places we’ve never been; to grow us in ways we would’ve missed had we never got out of our easy chair.
2. The second reason he stirs us up and moves us on is to press the reset button, refresh the screen, to show us familiar, old, comfortable things in a new light—to offer us fresh perspective on what we already know well.
In other words, he either expands our tent—taking us new places, giving us new ground, or he strengthens our stakes—deepening our appreciation through a fresh perspective on what is already long-familiar and well-know.
WE DO NOT HAVE TO LEAVE HOME for our stakes in God to go down deeper. God can take us out of our comfort zone with the person we’ve lived with for 20 years, or the children we thought we knew, or the book project we’ve dreamed of for decades. We can do deeper right where we are. Deeper is good.
WE CAN, HOWEVER, LEAVE HOME ANYTIME God invites us to do so. I’ve moved too many times in my life (32 at last count) to think God only works on familiar territory with friendly faces and in comfortable ways. I know he also works when we are willing to leave our homes, cities and people to face the unknown. Expanding our territory, learning a new language or culture, writing in ways new to us because suddenly we have fewer friends and are spending more time alone, observing life more closely. Broader is good.
DEEP AND BROAD
Deep and broad: sounds like the love of God alright. And really, there is nowhere we can go from his great, big love for us. So, if he is calling you out of your comfort zone, know that you are in good hands. He may have a deeper, richer experience for you and your writing right where you are, right now. He may be asking you to go deeper. Or, he may be asking you to literally and figuratively broaden your horizons, to venture beyond familiar boundaries (and barriers). He may be asking you to expand your tent, to broaden your perspective and horizons.
Only you know what God is asking you now.
Whatever it is, I encourage you to say, “YES,” and to go with God wherever he leads, which may very well be out of your comfort zone.
I’m glad I did, not only for the results in my writing, but also for the Sheer Delight of being SURPRISED by the One who Loves me Best. After all, any romance can grow dull. And life with God is often a love affair!