But first, we must begin.

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christian / emotional / encouragement / inspirational

It’s almost been one glorious year since my feet hit this turf.

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It pushed and it pulled just a little bit,

But beyond any of that. It taught me stuff.

In hindsight it really hasn’t been about the one big beginning, but rather – the lots of little beginnings it brought – the day in and day out things. Losing the familiar path to start an unfamiliar one. The friendships. The work. The places. The home. The people. And it kind of required looking clumsy for awhile. Beginnings always do.

So. I write of the path and what it’s taught me about simply starting.

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New skills // Beginning something without falling over isn’t what it’s about. We don’t know the path our feet are treading just yet, we’re going to slip once or twice, so we aren’t going to walk it with the ease of someone who’s walked it a hundred times over. No professional started a professional. But! Walk the path a couple times over and we’ll stop falling so much, walk it a couple times more and we can push the boundaries further. Who knows, maybe that’s when we can even walk the path backwards, or dance across the stream…. with our eyes closed.  I think the possibilities will expand as time goes on, so let’s not fret – we’re gonna shine even brighter soon and in a different way to before.

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Starting anything // Our Identity is who we are, not what we do. You know – the stripped back us – minus all the achievements and failures and stuff. What use is it to base our identity on how well we do something? That is going to fail us at one point or another. And that belief will make beginnings really quite scary – scarier than they need to be. Who we are – our real identity – is something we simply can’t fail at, in fact we ace being ourselves better than anyone can. Ha! And that doesn’t change whether we do something as well as we wished or not. No matter if it’s the first time walking a particular path, or the hundredth, our identity stays just as bright as ever, and we are loved just the same at all the stages.

Pride and people // Being easy on ourselves and others is so valuable and comparing each other is silly, no two people are the same, comparing then – is irrelevant. I’m learning from my own experience that when I, or something or someone appears to look hopeless, it’s often not the case at all – it may just be the humble beginning to a bright future. You know – what we are seeing or experiencing – just might be a new path being walked for the first time, it’s bound to look clumsy for a bit. I think we need to encourage ourselves when we fall, and definitely other people as much as possible to keep walking along the path when they see the rivers they have to cross for the first time. Beginnings aren’t the brightest stage of any process.

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Mess-ups // It’s hard to judge when we seek to really understand something or someone first. I find it so easy to see the tip of the iceberg and forget there’s more to it underneath – the part that isn’t seen. There’s always a why behind every weird thing we do, the why behind the stuff we do that we hate. And I wonder if that is one of the reasons why he* has the ability to love despite the mess. Love sees the underneath – always. And out of that, grace can be offered, that relentless wave of love that never ceases rolling in no matter what the mess – because he gets it, and cares enough to want to help us out and back onto the path.

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New people // People aren’t going to love straight away. In the sense that the deepest friendships grow over time, they never start that way. And when meeting people, we can’t expect too much. Perhaps it’s not a matter of not being liked, but rather not being known just yet. Once we’re known, people start loving more. Sure there are exceptions but more often than not, i reckon it’ll take a bit of effort and time. That’s a uniquely pretty sort of path because it’s walked for the first time – together.

Little things // Be faithful with all the little beginnings. When you move there are so many of them. We must approach them as graciously as we can. Being faithful with these small beginnings, will take us to a bigger place later. For me being faithful at the moment is learning to not become anxious about the little things that happen each day. To handle the big things, we gotta handle the small things bravely and faithfully. Now might be the time to be equipped and to be strengthened for what is coming later.

So. There’s a lot to be said of beginnings and how things aren’t necessarily as we first see them. Seeking to understand first the path people are on. And. Let’s just simply start things more often, practice starting afraid, looking a little foolish – because that is necessary.. if you want to later ‘dance through the stream with your eyes closed’…

Keep shining, you already are.

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The Author

31. Love people and love learning new things about God. Over and out.

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