Friday, August 31, 2012

Fifty-Two Weeks of New

See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness
and streams in the wasteland.
~Isaiah 43:19

God has been speaking a lot to me over the past six months about doing something new in my life.  I keep hearing over and over Isaiah 43:19- God is doing a new thing.  I've been thinking for a while about it, wondering what He could mean.  I've played around with an idea, spent time making up a list, and then discarded it as life got busy.  But the idea just keeps resurfacing, begging me to take it on.  I call it:

Fifty-Two Weeks of New  

Basically it is where try or do something new once a week every week for a year.  It can be something small--like trying a new food.  It can be something big--like going skydiving.  The point is that it doesn't matter so much what it is, just that it's something I've never done or tried before.

Why would I want to do something like this?

I've mentioned before how easy it is for me to get in a rut where I always do the same thing and don't want to step out and do something new.  But that it is essential for growth and maturity to continually step out of my comfort zone and do new things.

To say yes when I want to say no.  To sample that weird looking food even if I think it looks gross.  To jump off the cliff when I am comfortable standing on solid ground.  To challenge myself to do things that seem scary just to get over my fear.  I will be posting every Friday about what I've done each week that was new.

My first challenge is a bit of a doozy for me.  I signed my kids up for a co-op this year that requires the parent to either teach a class or assist with a class in order to get the fees waived.  I originally agreed to assist with teaching an art class.  Art-easy.  Give the kids some paint and paper and you're all set.  Assist-easy.  Someone else is in charge and I just help her.

But then I was asked by the co-op director if I would be willing to lead a class since there were a few key classes without a teacher.  I told her no.  I have never done a co-op before.  I wanted to get my feet wet before taking something that big on.

Over the next week, the idea to teach a class just kept festering in my brain.  Every day the thought just kept coming back--I should teach a class.  Every day I checked the blog to see if the classes had teachers yet to appease my mind.  No teachers.

The director then emailed me asking if I would assist with two classes.  I thought about it, prayed about it, and decided that I needed to take the plunge.  I emailed her back and offered to lead a class instead.

I immediately had buyers remorse.  I came up with a hundred reasons why I shouldn't lead a class.  And then I remembered that idea I had, the one where I did something new every week for a year.  I knew this was the perfect springboard for my challenge.  It was time to say yes when I wanted to say no.  To try something that I didn't want to try.  To jump when I wanted to stay.  To do something that terrified me to prove that I could do it.

I met with my assistant earlier this week to make up our lesson plans for the first five weeks.  I usually am really nervous when meeting strangers.  I always get stomach aches when I do something new that scares me--like teaching a class.  Yet I had no fear about the meeting.  My stomach was calm the entire day leading up to the meeting.  I felt at complete peace, confident that I was doing what God wanted me to do.  I left the meeting excited about the class and the fun things that we had planned.

One of my assignments was to find materials to make twelve swords out of for a unit on knights.  I had ordered bookcases that were delivered last night and when I opened the box, I found long pieces of thick styrofoam that were perfect for turning into swords.  I was so excited about it that my kids thought I was crazy.  I thanked God right then for sending me the materials I needed and took it as a sign of God's blessing on this endeavor.

It almost makes me look forward to the next fifty-one challenges I have in my future.  And no, none of them will involve eating bugs.  That's just gross.

1 comment:

  1. god blessed you with styrofoam! and peace to confirm your courage in stepping out in faith. what an encouraging story to tell lisa. 52 weeks of new sounds like an amazing adventure. i hope god keeps showing himself throughout! :) -kris