"I have heard the phrase, “what we resist, persist” for years. I have misinterpreted what that meant for my own life. I would hear the phrase and I would think, perhaps it means I need to accept things as they are, stop resisting change, and allow things to just be. Certainly there are merits in the former statements, but recently, I have begun to embrace a new way to live out this phrase.
For quite sometime now, I have been encouraged to join a sports league: kickball, volleyball, dodge ball, you name the league, and I have been asked to join. I would resist, telling those who encouraged me, including my therapist, I am busy, with work, celebrating my book, and a host of other commitments, I just don’t have the time.
At the same time, I was feeling sad, looking to find new ways to build community, to have an outlet where I could decompress and just have simple fun. The more I resisted sports leagues, the more the pain/ache of not having community continued to grow. Feeling immense loneliness, I finally surrendered and joined a sports league. I joined a sports league for many reasons, but the ultimate reason was I could no longer continue complaining about something, and resisting the invitation life was giving me to do something about it.
Resistance has a sibling named Fear and fear is the greatest inhibitor of joy. For some who read this, resistance is going to the gym. The act of being in a space unfamiliar, with people whose abilities supersede your own can be intimidating, invoke fear, but the longer you wait, the more the pain, or shame you may carry based on your weight persist. For another, you have been in graduate school for years, working on a dissertation that has found itself at a standstill, the fear and lack of structure has caused a since of paralysis. You do everything you can to distract yourself: television, volunteering, or plain out avoidance, but the more you resist, the more it persist.
For someone else, there are big life moves that you know you need to make, perhaps its searching for a new job, going back school, making a mends for past hurts, whatever the case may be, until you do what you resist, the lackluster feelings you currently experience will persist. Let today be a new day, a kick-start to a fresh way of being. Let today be the day we silence our need to complain, and raise the voice of the invitation life is giving us to do some things differently. When we find a way to move past fear, whether it be the gym, professional pursuits, or in my case dodge ball, we give notice to God that we are ready for the fruits ahead, and we acknowledge the power and responsibility we have to direct movement in our own lives."