Lean Forward

Lean Forward…..what does it mean, what doesn’t it mean.  When my husband and I were dating, i was working through some huge fear issues.  Sooooo what does he do?  He takes a girl afraid of everything and teaches her to snowboard.  I vividly remember, one of the first trips, sitting at the top of the run which, at the time, seemed steeper than the Trango Towers, trying to find the courage to stand up and try to to just hone my skills with the falling leaf move down the mountain.  I sat there, toe side, with my back to the slope for what seemed like an eternity.  My very patient instructor/boyfriend asked me if i was ready.  “I need to let this anxiety pass”  I shouted in what must have been the worlds most irritated tone.  “Okay” he replied calmly, “take your time and let it pass.”   When what seemed like an eternity had gone by he asked “Has it passed?”  To which my reply was a simple, stern “NOPE”.   I did make it down the mountain that day.  More like a “shaking leaf” than a “gracefully falling” leaf, but never the less, with some encouragement I made it alive.  Needless to say, by the end of the season, he had taught me many skills in facing and overcoming fears.  The biggest of those was to “lean forward”.  It’s how you gain momentum, how you find balance, how you make it off of a lift without bruising your tailbone.  Within all of that, I learned that if I did, in fact, just “lean forward” and face my fear/anxiety head on, that I could move through it.  It has since become a key phrase for me.  To ground me when anxious, doubtful, afraid, untrusting or just challenged.  “Lean forward”  Lean into the grace and protection that only our one true Father can provide.  Knowing that no matter what, there is celebration and healing on the  other side.

The weaker we feel, the harder we lean and the harder we lean, the stronger we grow.     JJ Packer


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