In a fight of flight situation, I’m a flight. Every single time.
Once while brushing my teeth, Steve "accidentally" sneaked up behind me, I immediately dropped to the floor. Not much fight here.
As much as I’d love to be one of those women featured in inspirational books and stories, the women who “who run into the storm” and “press into the hard things,” my natural instinct is to hide, move, bolt.
When things get tough, I start googling apartments in Manhattan and “how to move to Canada.” This is not a joke. I have done both of these things repeatedly.
Recently, I’ve had people overload. Don’t get me wrong, I love people. If you’re into the whole Myers-Briggs thing, I am an ENFJ all the way (ooo rhyme). However, the overwhelming brokenness in people and in relationships has been paralyzing. The way my sin impacts others weighs heavily on me. I don’t want to deal with people. I don’t want to hurt people. I just want to run away.
In reality, I know running isn’t the answer. We’re created for community (Genesis 2:18, Psalm 133:1) and the grass is definitely not greener on the other side, but I find immense comfort in the idea of running away. Being in a space where no one knows my sin, my brokenness, and in turn, no one’s sin and brokenness can hurt me.
Thankfully, God teamed me up with a fighter. In the hard and messy, Steve is one of those people who presses in. When job interviews don’t go his way, he keeps trying. He’s fiercely loyal even after people hurt him or exclude him. He sticks around. I’ve had a lot of people leave in my life, so someone sticking around is quite foreign to me.
Recently, I’ve wanted to run away from community. It’s been hard for me to confront my pain and let people in so I shut down and start googling “cost of a broker in Brooklyn, NYC.” But God is good and gracious and has used community repeatedly to refine my character and bring me closer to Jesus. So in the middle of my Google search, Steve informed me that instead of running away, we should probably do quite the opposite, run harder and faster towards community than ever before. So with lots of grace + Steve's persistence, we stepped into new leadership roles in our church.
Not only that, but we’re trying to commit to being with our community at least twice a week outside of church. This means I can’t run away from people. Ruh roh.
Aside from my tenacious husband, God has graced me with incredible friends who for some reason are sticking around, even when I want to stiff arm them in a big way.
If you’re like me and you’re a total flight, you’re not alone. There’s grace for us in our fear. But that doesn’t mean we sit by and let our self-protection win. I think you and me could take a lesson out my husband’s book. When things get hard we move forward 10x harder. We don’t settle for just sticking around, we dig deeper.
I’m not going to pretend the thought of leading a life group or investing in community doesn’t scare the pants off me, it does, but I have this strange inkling that it’s worth it.