The Fear of Letting Go
We’re all clingers. We may not know it, but we all have certain things in our life that we are – consciously or not – clinging to for various reasons. You may cling to a person, a relationship, your job, your home, or even the city you live in. Before you cross this one off on the list of things you’re concerned about, think about it: are you shaken when something comes along to disrupt your status with this thing/person/place? Do you find ways around changing your status with it/them so you can remain the same? If so, you may just be a clinger.
I find myself clinging to sameness. Change throws me for a loop that takes far too long to adjust to at times. When something unsettles my “norm,” I find myself feeling unstable, shaky, and even depressed. I like my routines. Anything that’s in my life seems to have it’s perfectly allotted place in pre-measured amounts, and when something or someone affects that balance, I get…uncomfortable.
Where does God fit into my addiction to my own comfort of sameness, though? How open am I to allowing Him to ask me to change? What about when those times inevitably come of Him asking me to let something go that I probably shouldn’t have allotted space for to begin with? How do I respond then?
I’d love to say that my responses are always super spiritual, prompt, and mature. Doing so, however, would be ignoring those less-than-ideal responses that I’ve had in that past: crying, throwing fits, refusing to budge, bartering (I’ll do this if you do this), and anger. I realize in those moments that I have been clinging to this thing that God is asking me to lay down. I’m scared to let go, because I feel like it will leave a big, gaping hole in it’s wake.
And how did it even get to the “gaping hole” level? Chances are, the thing I’m being asked to let go of was either something I knew from the start was not supposed to be, or something that I ignored signs of needing to let go of at an earlier point on my journey. What’s ironic is that had I let go of this thing the first time God asked, the release would have been far less painful than it will be now, because I’ve kept and clung to it for so long. Now, it’s had more chance to leave roots, so now it’s going to be a more painful extraction.
There’s good news today. God will never ask you to let go of something that He can’t make even better. He always has a reason for asking you to lay down that person/place/thing. He is Sovereign, and part of that Sovereignty is in knowing what is really good for us, and what is actually harming us. His will is for us and for His glory. He will never steer us wrong. If He’s asking you to do lay something down, you can do it, knowing that His ways are higher than our ways, so He sees what we cannot. If there’s anyone that’s trustworthy, it’s Him.
Let go today. Sometimes you’ll find that the beauty, relief, and joy that comes from laying something down is far better than the battle you were waging to keep it. Don’t worry about how to fill the “void” this thing will leave, but trust Him to look out for your best interests, and surrender. Take a deep breath, let go, and watch your life become better for it.