It's not always loud, obvious and boisterous, its often quiet, disguised and subtle.
It can ruin your day and change your opinion.
It can keep you from extreme joys and stop you from experiencing the greatest depth in life.
It holds you down and keeps you from experiencing real and true and raw relationships.
It coaches you into being someone you are not.
It keeps you from being truly known and seen.
It whispers that you are not good enough and tells you that you can never do it.
It warns that joy and love isn't worth the risk.
It hardens your heart and builds suffocating walls that keep you from feeling the warmth of honest community.
It can stop diplomats from making the right decision when the odds are against them.
It silences the weak, the abused and forgotten.
It quiets respect and human rights and completely buries those that stand for truth.
It breaks down who we are and tells us that we CANT or that we aren't enough.
It gives power to those to Lord over others weaker than them.
It drowns out love and fuels hate.
It darkens truths impact and murders hope.
It gives murderers the weapons to rule and take what isn't theirs.
It soils innocence and impacts nations.
It freezes us in our steps and tells us we will never make it if we move forward.
Fear is a liar, a very powerful liar. And we listen to it everyday.
I am no stranger to this reality. Fear has kept me from running, joyful, hopeful, wild and free towards my hearts desires.
Maybe this doesn't resonate with you, and to that I say congratulations, you have managed to avoid one of life's largest and heaviest struggles. But to the rest of you I ask, what has fear kept you from in your life? What has fear done to tie you up and silence your heart's dreams?
Take a moment. A long silent pause. A second to reflect.
The thing about fear is that it doesn't have power over us because it is big and strong. It has power over us because we allow it. We crawl into that jail cell on our own. We tie those ropes around our ankles and sit in the silent oppression.
Only you can untie those ropes and move forward.
So today, with my heart full and this broken and hurtful world before me, I am climbing out, kicking fear in the face, dreaming big dreams and running towards my forever.
Today I am choosing to untie the ropes, and I am inviting you to come along and bring as many people with you as you can.
Live the life you dream. Love deeply. Reach out and stand up for those captured by fear and live for freedom, redemption and life giving love and hope.