Tuesday, 1 July 2014

The Feisty Fly

Well here we are, the eve of my big trip to Barcelona! I can't believe it is finally here, the chance to explore a new city, a new people and to test out some ideas and inklings for the future. In the run up to this next adventure I have been reading a great book called The Mind Makeover by Sharron Lowe. In particular I have been struck by her chapter on smashing out of your comfort zone. This is, of course, particularly relevant when you are about to hop on a plane with just an address on a slip of paper and hopes of a good time!

Lowe gives a great example about comfort zones that I hadn't heard before, that of flies in a jar. If you place flies in a jar with the lid of you can pretty much guarantee what will happen, they will fly away. If you then cover the top of the jar with clear plastic film then they can only try to escape, unsuccessfully. Interestingly when you take off the film, after one day of trying to escape, the flies no longer make a bid for freedom. They no longer believe that there is life outside the jar and so sit, comfortably, in the confines of the jar for the rest of their lives.
For me that sounded worryingly familiar!! It is so easy to get caught up in the narrative of the world around you, even the one you have created for yourself. It happens at every age but turning 30 seems to be rife with this kind of thing. Suddenly life ought to look a certain way because 'that is just what people do.' The partner, the house, the kids, the good job, the nice car - the whole shebang. But what if that doesn't happen for you? And what if you are not sure if you even want it? Then you simply find yourself living 'unsuccessfully' under rules you never even made in the first place.

Being in Church ministry is wonderfully liberating in a way. It comes with its own 'glass jars' and you have to be a very feisty fly indeed to get beyond them sometimes. But it does also offer the opportunity, even the expectation, to fly free, live differently and chase after what is out of the ordinary. Its very exciting to be on the cusp of that again. To be looking out and thinking 'Well, this is wide open.' Now its just time to muster the courage, ready my wings and fly up to the top of that jar. Who knows what is on the other side?

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