Fear. It is a powerful animal. It keeps us from a great many things both personally, professionally and interpersonally. It keeps me quiet and my family doesn't know what is going on under my skin...that they just played main character in but I want them secretly to read my mind. But I can't read others, so I have this double standard. I need to open my mouth and ask for what I need. But fear of speaking keeps it in. Fear of appearing weak and needy, fear of failure, of appearing to "clingy", fear of rejection, just fear. The mind is a great and dreadful place all at once.
We can fail and strike out before we even venture out of our own mind!
We can indeed be our own worst enemy. Especially when it comes to God's gifts in our lives. Yes, every last one of us has graciously and indubitably been granted a great many gifts and talents. Abilities we know we carry, and maybe some we do not even see as gifts. Such as the gift of positivity, many don't know they have it but it is a special gift. These people keep a light in their eyes when things are desperate, they can't stand negativity in too great of form, it saps their unique ability to have and bring sunshine to others. I need these positive people around me.
The opposite of this gift of life and joy is fear. If we are afraid or wounded we self-protect our scars. We don't want to be hurt again, we are living in a state of fear and panic. This is not the love and sound mind that Christ wants for us. Our gifts cannot be used for others or benefit ourselves (of course not the primary reason for gifts to make us feel good, but an additional benefit for us is this joy we gain to be used by God and help others). So from the place of learning as God teaches us something new, freeing our mind, unleashing a new truth, let us not set down these "boxes" before we "move back into real life". Sometimes after we attend an event, hear a teaching or are just encouraged and we are all pumped up initially, seeming ready to conquer the world but we get back to the threshold of "normal life" and low and behold it is so easy to set down those "boxes of learning" to get back inside where we came from. We have to set down some things to fit back into our old style of life. In doing that we really set down a great task, a great harvest we have in store by faith to see, the honor to act on God's revelation taken from the secret place to action in real life. From the place of the supernatural to this natural world. The God-confidence and trust to carry the weight into life requires a little uncomfortable feeling on our part at first, after all- we are doing what is impossible (only by God's mighty hand).
For those that have mastered this learning and carrying of boxes it can appear to others of us like a well used chalkboard. The teachings of life leave a dust, an essence, kind of like the Rabi's trail in the dusty desert. His followers followed so closely to Him they had the dust from His feet on their own feet. The chalkboards tell the tail of what they received through good teaching.
I sometimes see that board as dirty, it desperately needs to be cleaned off and have a fresh start. Oh, but can't I have a new perspective, that is the dust of success, of teaching and use, true instruction. Not to be swiped clean- but to be used. My life doesn't need to be a clean slate that fits in the perfect picture window with flowers arranged in an order that I see fit, it has to be Christ's for His glory....with all the gifts busting out of that window box. It won't be neat as I plan....it will be messy grace. It is not the kind I cannot let go and trust in. It is beyond my mind and greater than my greatest imagination.
God is a gentleman and won't ask me to be untrue to my own unique personality....He just makes us better and more free, if we will only carry some boxes for Him. He asks us to overcome through Him in victory while we are yet in this life. Sometimes that is wild. As a little girl I would swing, I would imagine letting go and flying over the trees....free. The same with the gifts of Christ in our lives, they are given to set us free...they do not limit us or make us more self conscience. They are beautiful treasures when we allow ourselves to carry these boxes of teaching into our daily lives and touch others through them.
I will start by simply asking my family for what I need and stop role playing a number of different theories in my mind, that is the gift of communication and patience at work. So go ahead and open up those boxes you've been "storing" somewhere else away from "real life" and see what God does.