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Learning Something New (Part 1)

“You can learn new things at any time in your life, if you are willing to be a beginner.  If you actually learn to like being a beginner the world opens up to you.” -Barabara Sher (speaker, life coach, author)

You called me out upon the waters, the great unknown where feet may fail. -Hillsong (Christian Praise and Worship Band) http://youtu.be/faXOv9Z7OIY

I like this quote and this verse as it pertains to learning new things–humility and faith.  Humility as we have to be willing to accept that we know nothing about whatever it is we are learning, we are going to have questions if we are brave enough to ask them and we are probably going to look stupid if we are daring enough try new things.  And faith in that stepping out into the unknown causes us to be different on the other side.  This sounds like it has a serious undertone but it’s just a blog about me (Tonya) learning to paddleboard.  This is part 1 of 4; part’s 2-4 will be about Michael, Mason and Cohen’s journey’s learning something new.

I was born and raised in Arkansas so you can say I am homegrown 🙂 I grew up exploring 6 acres of woods and a little creek that ran through it–you know making forts, catching crawdads, jumping out trees and killing snakes.  So I’ve always been one for adventure and I love being on the water–doesn’t matter–river, lake, ocean; there’s just something about the water that’s pure but mysterious.  So fast forward Michael got into whitewater kayaking, I tried it–but it didn’t take with me?  Not sure what happened there and kinda bummed me out that I couldn’t do something for whatever reason and not to mention Michael and I are a package deal and now he was off chasing river’s without me.  Oh but wait; I discovered stand up paddleboarding or SUPs!  image

It’s pretty much kinda like a surf board. With a SUP you can explore flat water, you can exercise-like actually do yoga and yes you can go down river.   But I did have to learn and I was reluctant at first because I knew nothing, it looks hard to balance and I didn’t want to fail.  With faith, a little humility, many falls (yep I looked stupid) and a year later…I teach SUPFIT classes, lead SUPTAG (time alone with God) and have gone down well just one river so far; I’m also signed up to be trained as a Level 2 SUP instructor this summer. What if I wouldn’t have stepped out in this unknown territory?

Whether it’s learning to be a mom, a teacher, a wife or learning to play guitar or paint, learning to drive (I have a teenager and it’s scary) learning to speak in public or learning how to manage your finances, learning to ski or running a business.  There is an explorer in all of us; we were created to learn and to be creative so we can’t help but NOT to want to learn new things. So what gets in the way?  Fear.  At some point I was fearful of all of the above because of some personal misconceived short coming or potential failure and humiliation. I was definitely fearful to try paddleboarding because I failed at kayaking.  So what changed?  I slayed fear.  Seriously I had a really cool dream and caught a revelation and “I am no longer a slave to fear.”  I’m getting serious again and that’s a whole other blog anyways.

SUPFITDown river

So I will answer the question what if I wouldn’t have stepped out in the unknown?  Well I’d still be wishing I could go with Michael, I wouldn’t be teaching others to learn new things (funny how that flipped huh?) nor would it be a benefit to our business.  I wouldn’t have an infant wilderness ministry (again funny how that flipped–when things that are meant for our harm God turns and uses for our good and beyond what I imagined).  By humbling myself to be a beginner “the world has opened up to me” and by  stepping out in faith built my faith even more.  I’m ready for the next adventure.

SUPTAG

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