There is a difference between giving up and letting go. When giving up, there is a sense of defeat. There is a throwing up of the hands to something. I give over control or possession of something. Something becomes too difficult and I throw in the towel. Giving up can lead to some serious consequences especially when someone gives up a sense of purpose or life. Giving up is a very passive activity.
Letting go, on the other hand, can be liberating and freeing. It can be done very positively in a way that lifts one’s spirits. There is an active participation, an act of relinquishment. To voluntarily give over something.
As we move in our desire to become more of who we are called to be, there is an important step to let go. In order to move into a new way of being, we must move out of that which has become obsolete, that which doesn’t serve us anymore, that which may be such a part of our being that it is painful and difficult to excise and let go of it.
What might those “its” be for you? What are you and I being called to let go of, to relinquish, so that we can grow and become more of who are supposed to be?
Some of the “its” that come to mind for me: fear; certainty; the way I think of myself in this present moment; perfection; doubts; thinking small.
Maybe this December time, this Advent time, this time of longer nights and darkness is an ideal time for us to take the “desert journey” within. To move more deeply into ourselves and see what needs to be revealed to us. To see the doubts and fears, and certainties and smallness that are not serving you and me in any way. To allow the light from within to illuminate those things, to show us for what they really are, and to see ourselves in a brand new light. To see ourselves beyond the things that we need to let go of. They are baggage. They are parasites. They suck the blood and life right out of us and make us weak.
This is a painful journey. Yet, any birth, as we all know, certainly comes with pain. Any new life that is to emerge must come at the expense of letting go, of painfully letting go of the “its” that have distorted our way of being and living. It is time to let go and move into a greater inner freedom of living. This is a first step in real transformation and real living.
What do we need to let go of today?