Scraping the Barnacles
I’ve decided to let go of anxiety-builders. Those things that keep me up at night. There are the simple ones— money, family, education— and those likely won’t go away. But then there is layer after layer of crusty theological ones, soul-threatening ones, like barnacles on a dock, building up while also wearing down. Who am I offending with my social justice lens on the gospel? Who has labeled me today, and how will that impact our relationship? How will this Christ-centered orthodox woman anger her family today? Who hates my perspective of creation, of hell, of women in ministry? Who hates my love of liturgical practices, or my belief that inner reflection, soul-care, are crucial to following Jesus?
These chains, the parasitical weight that I carry around? It turns out it’s my choice to let go of them. Whales practice breaching— a behemoth belly-flop— to remove barnacles from their thick skin. Throwing itself up, out of the water, and slapping down into it, the power of the water hitting the whale, acting like a pressure washer.
I know I’m supposed to write about what I have let go of. But the truth is, I haven’t let go enough. It’s painful, the skin-scraping that has to happen. But I’m committed to it, to removing the barnacles.
Because the days I’m successful? They are the most joyful. They are the days where God’s grace is the easiest to see. They are the days when it’s easy— cool water over smooth rocks easy— to love everyone.
I want more of those days, the-fullness-of-beauty-creating-thin-places days. And I realize that those days require me to let go, to walk into them without my cinderblocks, without the anxiety-builders.
This post is part of a May Synchroblog, the topic being “Unfurling.” Read some of the other posts below:
- John Martinez at Indie Faith – Letting Go of the Holy Me
- Beth Patterson at Finding Ground – What is Passed Over is Not Love
- Jeremy Myers at Till He Comes – Help, I’m Lost and Can’t Find Myself
- Ellen Haroutunian – Life Unfurling
- Marta Layton – On Burdens, Blessings, Babies and Bathwater
- Alan Knox at The Assembling of Church – Where Did I Go? (link not up yet)
- Crystal Lewis – What Happened When I Let Go
- Pam Hogeweide at How God Messed Up My Religion – Letting Go of a Church-Centered Me
- K.W. Leslie at the Evening of Kent – Legalism, Anti-Legalism, and Anti-Anti-Legalism
- Ryan Harrison at How We Spend Our Days – Scraping the Barnacles
- Kathy Escobar at The Carnival in My Head – Letting God Off the Hook
- Christine Sine at Godspace – Giving Up For God, What Does it Cost?
- Liz Dyer at Grace Rules – What Do You Do When You Are Not Sure
- Dan Brennan at Faith Dance – Letting Go for a Greater Good
- Elaine Hansen – Recovering Control Freak – Let Go?
- Wendy McCaig at View From the Bridge – Embracing the Grey
- Chris at The Amplified Life – Seasons of Life