Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Fight or Flight

(This blog is dedicated to those who love to read all of my business without me telling all of my business. You know who you are and you know I love you dearly!)

Fight or flight. It's the natural human response to a lot of things. Fear. Rejection. Pain. Obstacles. Challenges. Trouble. Disaster.

The "fighters" determine not to let the opposition get the best of them. It becomes a part of the challenge to prove yourself not just a fighter, but a winner.

Those in flight aren't making a statement of being a coward. It is just the opposite reaction to flee from the trouble, avoid it at all costs, don't get involved more than you may already be.

I can honestly say I don't have a default. I've had my fair share of reactions to both fight and flight. But in the loneliness of my pain, sin, despair, hurt and confusion, whether I choose to put on the boxing gloves and take on my opponent, or if I do whatever I can to avoid the conflict and confrontation, I am left robbed of any real resolution.

A few months ago I wrote a blog about crying and letting myself finally feel the emotions I had suppressed. Even in my state of "fight" I tend to emotionally detach. Call it a flaw, call it survival. Whether through conditioning or DNA - or maybe a little bit of both - handling the situation has never been a problem for me, but feeling throughout the process hasn't always produced great results so I've built a wall around my heart so as not to get hurt.

But what I'm learning now is that brick by brick I can take down that exterior. Layer by layer I can remove the covering that seeks to protect my wounded and scarred heart. You see, I'm just as guilty of causing myself pain. It's not only the fault of others. In my attempt to flee the situations, I've robbed myself of all emotion and all opportunity to find peace in a resolution. In the battles I've picked to fight, I've usually taken the defensive and not offensive position, still leaving me in a mostly helpless state. This somehow seems to result in me eventually finding myself retreating, left to lick my wounds and console my hurts.

I'm not here to tell you I've figured it out. By no means. I am still very much on this journey. I am guilty. I bear the scarlet letter of my sin. I bear scars. Some tell the story of how deeply I've been wounded by others. Some are reminders of my own self-inflicted injuries. I've endured consequences. Sure, I've always wanted God's will but I haven't always been seeking it. I've been given blessings. Unbelievable blessings.

I'm learning to be real. When I'm honest about my pain and hurt and failures - and yes, even my emotions - I'm realizing that others can be real too. When I allow people to see the faults, flaws and failures it seems to help us all realize we're just one breath away from the enemy's attack. And that, my friends, is where we circle back to fight or flight.

You see, this natural human instinct is built in us for a reason. What I am here to tell you is fleeing your emotions or circumstance is NECESSARY when it is an attack of the enemy. Fighting your opponent - only once suited up with your spiritual armor - is IMPERATIVE for your survival. Flee temptation. Flee the devil. Flee all hints of evil. Fight like your life depends on it (because it does) to protect your heart, your mind, your emotions and, above all, your character.

And remember this - whatever has happened, whatever you've done, however you've stumbled, whatever you've felt, know that God's only response is to run. He runs right to you no matter what you've felt or how you've fallen.

When God Ran

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