Occurring days after marrying, I recently flew to Cuba, my very first time flying. To say the least, the last few weeks have been thrilling, adventurous. I’ve been learning to take risks, to ignore fear and choose courage.
You see, two years ago, I was not at all who I am today. I was afraid of marriage, distasteful of fish and eggs, afraid (somewhat) of flying, and terrified of swimming in the ocean. In fact, I used to have this unfounded fear that sharks would somehow appear in the deep-end of swimming pools, and if there was even the slightest possibility that eggs were in my dish I could not eat.
I have lived a life of fear. Yet, despite this fear, I have always had an inner adventurer, craving for thrills and wanting to take risks but held back by fear. Yet, there I found myself, conquering each of the above fears in the space of one exciting week– a week where I married, flew, ate eggs, ate fish, and swam out in the ocean.
What changed me? Well, it began with a person who saw something in me and chose to cultivate what she saw. Yeah, I met a girl, a beautiful girl that quite literally took my breath away– and I’m not just saying this to be romantic; the first few times I met this girl, I was scared of rejection and felt way out of her league, to the point that I could not breathe. Gradually, she pulled me out of this, showing me that I was worth something; she showed me that she loved me. Three weeks ago, I married this girl. She changed my life, and she’s still changing my life.
It’s thanks to her, even, that I’m about to begin my third year of university. You see, education is important to me. When I was younger, I had a rather troubled school-life. Due to various family complications I was quite behind in my education. I only began high school at about age 15, and I was kicked out of school at age 17, only to return at age 19 and complete my high school at age 21. When I returned to school, I resolved that I would give it my all, because during my two years away from school I experienced working a minimum wage job and decided that I did not want such a life. But, thanks to my would-be wife, I have achieved academic success, after conquering my fear and uncertainty– fear of how I would fair and uncertainty of what I should study.
Two years later, there I was, entering a plane, conquering another fear. As I walked aboard, I was struck by how unfearful I was. Sure, there was a small amount of fear, but I felt surprisingly calm. Leading to that day, I had felt quite scared at the thought of being 30,000 feet in the air, without much recourse should something go gravely wrong. Yet, at that moment, as I walked towards my seat, I felt ready, and I felt excited.
Soon after being seated, the plane began to move. As it picked up speed, I prepared myself for the changing air pressure by chewing gum and popping my ears– as directed by my wife. Then, suddenly, the engine roared, surging the plane forward… and upward. We were in the air.
As we climbed higher, I looked down below at Montreal– my city, my home. From up so high, I could see what I had once known only in my mind: the world is a small place.
I don’t have to be afraid anymore.
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7