Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Out of the Box

Last night as I went to bed I kept thinking about a jack-in-the-box. It’s a strange thing to be thinking about right before bed, I know…

But, there I was lying in bed thinking about how Jack is trapped in that box – forced to listen to the same song over and over again – only 2 directions to go: up or down. It’s Jack’s daily routine and not much changes, unless the top gets stuck and now there is nowhere to go. It’s just quiet and dark. It doesn’t sound like much fun to me. More like the ultimate rut. And then we laugh when he pops his head up…we push him back down and do it all over again. Why? Maybe we laugh because otherwise we’d cry and recognize our lives are too close to the same thing. We relate too much to Jack.

Me – I know my life does. I’m too vanilla as someone told me recently.

I have my box – home, work, same stores, the same people day in and day out.
I have my song – the way I like things to be done, the order, the rhythm of my life
And I have my movements – I go up in mood when things are good. I hide when things get hard.

Oh, I may change the color of my box on occasion or maybe move my box to slightly different location – but rare used to be the occasion when I actually got out of the box.

It’s changing…I’m learning to trust that voice inside that prompts me to do crazy things even if I think it might make me look silly.

This week there was a whisper…. Just mention it. “No”, I said. “It’s not my place and it seems a little presumptuous.”

He said, “I’m giving you an opportunity if you want to get out of that hole for a while, but it will take some courage.”

I take a deep breath and offer myself without box in tow. There are moments of silence and I think what have I done. Do I look childish? Needy? What if the answer is no? Will I be hurt or relieved? What if the answer is yes? Oh… what if yes is worse?

He says, “The answers don’t matter, only that you were willing.”

Outside the box is new. The ground feels a bit unsteady at times.

The answer was yes. I’m so excited for my God-blessed afternoon this coming weekend. If I had chosen the box instead – probably would not have smiled nearly as much this week. And even worse, I would be preventing someone else from receiving the blessing, too.

I know you must be thinking she’s done gone off the deep end for good. Guess what? I have! I’ve jumped up out and off the edge and am going to try living life in freefall. It’s adventure and excitement. It’s about becoming more like rainbow sherbet.

Sorry Jack. This Jill is moving out.


Kelly said...

You have had a large grin on your face all week, I could get used to seeing it :)

Have fun this weekend!

Lauresa said...

Yes.I love this post.I am so excited for you, and I am so proud of you. As you know, I am reading your book, and I just finished chapter 2; guess what was repetitively referenced?-"Jumping off of a cliff," into God's almighty hands. You Go Girl.

JD said...

Thank you, for being brave enough to shed the box and burst forth with such beautiful courage and determination... determination and courage to not get in the way of the wonderful work that God is doing through you, to not hide the beauty that is you inside that box.

Truth be told, that box never had the ability to hold who you are within it. I saw through that box a few weeks ago, and knew what was inside was too special to be contained within a six sided space. It deserved to be set free, to be shared, to be healed, to... be.

This has been one of the most memorable, cherished, treasured afternoons of my life.

Thank you, for not being willing to miss this moment, because you are so right... so poignantly right... I would have missed this blessing too if you hadn't let go and taken that leap of faith. Faith in yourself to let "Jill" out of that box, and faith in God to catch you if needed.

Thank you, for the gift of you. Priceless, treasured, cherished, loved... grateful for the time God has given us today.

Tia said...

Got this comment in an email and loved it!

"although it is important to get out of the box, vanilla isn’t bad! Rainbow (sherbet) may be a little risky. Lol. Maybe the jack in the box is a metaphor for how life and society keep pushing us down and we keep rising up even if it takes someone turning the knob. Turning the knob is inspiring, even if forced a bit. Think of all the exuberance jack appears to have when he pops from the box. Maybe we all need to be spring from our boxes sometimes. Maybe we are like hermit crabs. We have a shell for a long time and then we trade up."