Okay…so here goes kind of a strange confession. You know how in movies sometimes, you can hear what the character is thinking and his brain goes to some strange commercial or song, or plays his life out in a comic book reenactment or something right before his own eyes.. (Or HER own eyes…)? Well, that’s been happening to me a LOT lately. There happens to be a phrase from an old commercial that keeps playing over and over in my brain.
Here goes: There’s an old commercial for Hefty trash bags. Here’s the link of one of those: “Wimpy, WIMPY…” HEFTY trash bags are strong. Wimpy trash bags are so not. “WIMPY, WIMPY” is repeated over and over again as the trash bag just falls apart. You don’t want “wimpy, wimpy” (in high pitched voice), you want “HEFTY, HEFTY” (in low strong voice). The commercial was a brilliant marketing tool. I mean, heck, I’m hearing it in my head decades later!
Lately, hearing “wimpy, wimpy” has happened to me in the strangest of places. It happened Monday morning as I was on the plane and just so enjoyed the conversation with the person sitting next to me. She’s from SC, but has lived in Brooklyn for over 10 years. I kept thinking that it’d be really good to have her number just as a contact. I’m here for a week and am visiting my son for part of the time, but working on a little project the other part on my own and other than the Air BNB host and my son (who is often in meetings, etc.), I really don’t have anyone I could call here for questions or an emergency. So I was too chicken to ask her for her number and dismissed it…. and all I heard resounding LOUDLY in my brain was “WIMPY, WIMPY.” No kidding. (I even eye rolled myself on this one…)
So, I went “hefty, hefty” and asked her for her number. Bold? No, it was ridiculously small, but for me, it took wading through the wimpy waters of my mind and not worrying about nonsense. Anyway, I feel better knowing I have her number. But yes, that was such a teeny tiny small thing and I am SUCH a wimp sometimes.
The next ‘wimpy, wimpy’ moment was in getting the UBER from the airport. Because you see, I have not planned things out at all. I kind of ‘wing’ a lot of things these days and just figured I’d figure it out when I get there. No, you would not want me as your travel agent…not in this current season of my life!
Anyway, that would’ve been fine, except for the fact that my phone wouldn’t download the UBER app…at all. It kept circling at the payment part and I couldn’t get through. So, I got out my laptop, and realized (to my horror), that the track pad/mouse wasn’t working and I couldn’t access my computer. UGH. (That’s another story…one of my main goals this week was to get some writing done which involved my computer—which wasn’t working….UGH again.)
As I sat outside watching Taxis and UBERS pick up travelers. I had a little twinge of fear and heard “WIMPY, WiMPY” in my head again. Oh brother. It made me smirk a bit and, to make a long story short, I called my son and asked him to continue signing up online for the UBER app, etc. It worked, and I had a really cool UBER driver. (I think I could recite her life story and so enjoyed the conversation of the ride.)
Well, I’ve heard “WIMPY, WIMPY” in my head dozens of times today. Seriously, it’s a bit ridiculous. But here’s the cool thing—I’m so aware that everywhere I go, God is. I love the quote by Elisabeth Elliot says, “Sometimes fear does not subside and we must do it afraid.”
He goes before me and behind. Last night, I smiled to myself as I realized the driver’s name was “Emmanuel”, which means, ” God is with us.” And it makes me realize that God so knows my ‘wimpy, wimpy’ moments. He so knows when I need gentle reminders of His grace, of His presence, of His knowledge of all that is going on in my heart and head.
One of my favorite quotes through the years has been “Where courage is not, no other virtue survives except by accident.” (Samuel Johnson). Sometimes courage is in the HUGE things like speaking in front of thousands, or sharing a new idea, confronting an injustice, or making a career change. But sometimes, courage is taking the next step, doing the next seemingly easy thing that is so not easy. Sometimes courage is even just getting up in the morning.
We all wear courage differently because we all have different challenges. But there’s joy on the other side of the challenge. Even if we fall,even if we fail, courage can help us conquer huge mountains one teeny tiny step at a time. What so often gives me courage, is the faith that God knows what He’s doing, and as I lean into Him, well, things have a way of working out the way they are supposed to–in the big things, and in what may seem ‘little’.
Some of you may roll your eyes at this, but for me, it takes courage EVERY single time I hit the “publish” button on my blog. Crazy isn’t it? Courage for some of you is way bigger than that. I’m actually working on finishing up a novel that I have had in my head for years and am editing. Talk about needing courage., lol! Because the “WIMPY, WIMPY-who-do-you-think-you-are” chorus in my head is on repeat so often. But I’m turning down the volume on that. Filters are important. In pools, in air conditioner units, and in my mind. Yep, gotta filter out that “WIMPY, WIMPY-who-do-you-think-you-are” nonsense because we all have one life to live and I feel like I have a little something to say in this Novella. Maybe a lot. Yeah, maybe so. So, courage for me right now is showing up and thanking God for opportunity to be in a new space and place –in location and mindset.
As I walked through Central Park this a.m. on my way to wherever I was gonna end up (which is currently a NYC public library in the Upper East Side), I was so thankful for the freedom that comes with knowing I’m not alone. Even when I am.
Walking by faith can be a cycle of fear and courage—stepping out, seeing God provide, and having faith to take another bigger step. God is so good, and He uses what we bring to Him. Today, I’m just choosing to bring Him the day–with all the joys and challenges and fears and little teeny tiny victories. He is good, and I can trust Him…whether life is a walk in the park, or not… Today, it definitely is…..<3
p.s. Turn up the volume on “Hefty, Hefty.” ” Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Yeah, I’m thinking Joshua 1:9 is a great verse to have on repeat in our minds.
p.p.s. Wimpy trash bags so often leave a big mess behind. So does walking in fear. Yep….fear constrains and keeps us from walking in the freedom that is ours.
p.p.p.s. I so love the book, Diary of a Wimpy Kid…. and so love the transparency of the character Greg who puts all his fears out there but is so courageous in facing them down. (He hears and def plays out scenarios in his head too!) Well, here’s to writing our own diaries—facing down fears and celebrating victories, no matter how large or small they might appear to be ❤