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Growth Never Happens in Our Comfort Zone

I fell at my high school graduation. Right on the very set of steps that are pictured in the photo below. During the procession, as my graduating class marched onto the football field, I got three or four steps from the top and my ankle gave out. I fell, scraping my ankle up pretty good.  I remember it so vividly. It was like the entire crowd collectively gasped and leaned toward me as if they could catch me and keep me from falling. Even though it hurt like crazy, I stood up, marched myself the rest of the way onto that football field, and got my diploma. Goodness, just call me Grace.

I was overweight when I graduated high school, and most definitely, my weight contributed to my rolling my ankle that day and falling. I’m not easily embarrassed, but boy was I embarrassed. Falling at such a big life event doesn’t exactly lend to being able to easily forget. In fact, I’m reminded of it pretty often.

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I like to be outside when I exercise as much as possible. I enjoy the fresh air, and sunshine, so you can catch me walking, jogging, and running the stairs at that very same stadium a few times a week. I have a sort of interval training routine that I do, and it involves some stadium workout exercises that I learned in a class a couple years ago. When I’m doing those exercises, running up and down the stairs and lunging up the seats, I always gravitate toward that same set of stairs that I fell on during graduation. I do that on purpose. When I’m up at the top of those set of stairs looking down, I still get a little tinge of fear, a flashback of sorts from falling and hurting my ankle.

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Honestly, still to this day, going down that set of stairs is still a bit out of my comfort zone. That quaver in the pit of my stomach warns me, Don’t do it! You’ll fall again! You’ll roll your ankle again! I silence that voice and tell myself, Growth never happens in our comfort zone. Do it anyway. I purposefully do something that still gives me a little tinge of fear to remind myself that I can overcome. I will overcome. I am overcoming. Each time I run those steps, I’m conquering that fear, stepping out of my comfort zone. It’s almost a physical reminder for me, each pounding step pushing that fear into the ground, reminding me how far I’ve come.

Growth never happens in our comfort zone.

For years, I was stuck in my comfort zone. I lived a stagnant life. Each victory I’ve had over that last couple of years only happened when I stepped outside of my comfort zone, when I did something that gave me a little tinge of fear, but I did it anyway. 

  • Making that very first phone call to my surgeon’s office about having weight loss surgery, and going through that entire six to seven month process. And the surgery itself. I was terrified to have the surgery, but I didn’t let that fear stop me.
  • Learning to eat in a new way completely.
  • Pushing myself physically when I exercise.
  • Saying yes to things and doing things that I used to say no to.

And the list goes on and on.

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What things are keeping you in your comfort zone?

If you’re stuck in your comfort zone, what’s keeping you there? What’s stopping you from that growth and forward movement you need to accomplish your goals? Is it simply being comfortable and not wanting to move? Is it opposition from an outside source? Is it fear?

“For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands, for God gave us a spirit not of fear, but of power and love and self control. ”  2 Timothy 1:6-7

 

Steven Furtick said in Crash the Chatterbox:

Don’t let a battle you are afraid to fight keep you from a victory that’s already won.

Don’t let fear keep you in your comfort zone. Face that fear and step out anyway. Step out in faith and then you’ll see real growth. You’ll start seeing little victories that together add up to big victories. What can you do this week to push yourself outside of your comfort zone? Really think about it. Write it down. Pray over it and commit it to the Lord!  He didn’t give you a spirit of fear. He equipped you with the opposite of fear; power, love, and self-control. And the victory’s already yours.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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