“Our lives are filled with places we choose to leap or stay put. One is not better than the other, yet leaping has its advantages. We are each directly or indirectly asked to fulfill our dreams and destiny. Sometimes we crawl there, or find ourselves stuck outside of our dreams. Leaps of Faith can put us in a new spot we couldn’t see from where we stood before.”
(SARK, “The Bodacious Book of Succulence”)
I believe it was SARK (a.k.a. Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy) who first introduced me to the term “Leap of Faith.” If you haven’t yet had the pleasure of reading one of SARK’s deliciously colourful, creative and inspirational hand-written books (here), such as “Succulent Wild Woman” or “Juicy Pens, Thirsty Paper,” I’d highly recommend indulging yourself in the near future. You’re very welcome. In any case, it’s not as though the actual concept of taking that kind of risk was unfamiliar to me; rather, I’d just never had an accurate description for it until then. I’ve been taking Leaps of Faith all my life. There’s always something to learn at the bottom or at the top.
What is a Leap of Faith?
A Leap of Faith is a risk, a thrill, something that brings us more alive. A chance, against all odds, a dance with the Unknown. Being born. Making new friends. Going back to school. Home-schooling. Taking a trip. Falling in love. Marriage. Divorce. Separation. Reconciliation. Walking away. Moving forward. Going back. Letting go. Coming out. Having a baby. Raising a child. An empty nest. Starting or quitting a job. Opening a business. Relocation. Buying or selling a house. Writing. Singing. Dancing. Creation (of anything.) Breaking the rules. Breaking the silence. Using our voices. Telling our stories. Following our dreams. Being who we are instead of hiding behind who we were never meant to be.
A Leap of Faith is listening to that little voice inside who says, always, “Just trust.” Trust. At the heart of any leap lies trust. Perhaps that’s what makes it so daring. It’s not easy to trust ourselves, other people, God & the Universe. But it may be the only way to build a meaningful life.
There are some places in life where it’s much more challenging to leap than others. Some chances our hearts just seem more willing to make. I’ve always found it easiest to leap toward something as opposed to leaping away. Letting go is a slow, painful process, full of stops and starts and little jerky jumps. I’m not very good at it yet. Tenacious to a fault, like a baby hermit crab clinging to the tip of a big hairy toe, I often don’t recognize it’s time to give up until the decision has already been made for me. Until that great hand-in-the-sky has reached out to grab me, tossing me hard onto the burning hot sand, scrambling for cover, slightly bruised and badly shaken. Then, and only then, do I realize that I probably shouldn’t have held on so hard in the first place. I should’ve just let go. Sometimes letting go is the biggest leap of all.
Growth happens in leaps and bounds. At least it does for me. And it seems as though all of the lessons I most need to learn live inside the chances I take, and the ones I don’t, the times I risked it all, and when I just couldn’t risk anymore. At a fork in the road, how can we be certain we’ll make the right choice? I’ve thought about this an awful lot. I think, in the end, the right choice is whatever we choose. Wherever we may leap.
Have you leaped lately? Are you leaping right now? Where might you most need to leap? Please feel free to leave a comment.
*This post first appeared on Living the Dream blog*