The reason for the season.

In my childhood home, the stairs to our second floor featured a landing without a railing (gasp!). My dad would convince me to stand on that landing with my back to him. He’d say, “Now fall back. I’ll catch you. Just fall.” I remember the first few times: I was scared silly, laughing and trembling, doubting his ability to catch me. I would fall back and within a second I’d find myself cradled in his arms. Soon, I was begging him to let me jump backward into his arms.

What is most surprising to me is that I know in my knower that he’d still catch me if we were again on that landing even though I’m no longer a little girl and he’s no longer a young man. The shame for me is that this trust in him didn’t translate to my living the impossible as possible for so many years in my life.

I later learned that the spirit to trust that my dad would catch me as I fell backward could be bigger and greater, and constant. If I put that faith in my Dad in heaven, I could have one backed by the promises guaranteed through the blood of His son, Jesus. Paul of Tarsus writes in 2 Timothy 1:7,

For God has not given us a spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

My spirit was generally and regrettably fearful. I had moments when it wasn’t but I usually cowered from chasing my dreams out of fear of too many things I had no control over and would never wield. The day I decided to trust Him was the moment I felt my spirit change from one of fear to one that lives cradled in the arms of the Father, knowing that all is possible—even the seemingly impossible—and that the result isn’t as important as knowing that I’m already in His arms, safe and sound.

The stories this month are about just that: trust and leaps of faith. Jim Chaffin (“The Sport of Kings”) sends his falcons into our skies, never knowing for sure that they’ll return. In “Kickstart It,” the three entrepreneurs who used a crowdfunding site risked money and reputation (and more) to follow their dreams, and Alyssa and Sarah decided to change their life with a community program that has brought changes they never imagined (“YMCA Workout Buddies”).