Lean In or Run and Hide


Photo by: Ethna Piazza 


Lean in or run and hide…


I’ve written before about forgiveness and reconciliation. Once those two concepts grab ahold of you, they don’t let go. And I mean that in a good way. Those thoughts keep getting “polished.” Some of you remember rock tumblers and the way old rocks got turned into shiny “gems.” The tumbler would just keep ‘a tumblin’…And it’s sort of like that with these thoughts of mine. I don’t know whether they’ll ever turn into gems or not – and in some ways it’s OK if they don’t; that’s not the point - to “get it right” – but the more they tumble the more refined (shinier?) they get. So, here we go with some more tumblin’…


We all are faced with choices – every day. And, we all make our own choices.


I’m responsible for my choices.

You are responsible for yours.


When it comes to forgiveness and reconciliation, we can choose the path of forgiveness and reconciliation – or, we can choose a different path. As I see it,


when faced with choices like this:


Either we run and hide, or

We lean in.


We either run away and hide – usually because of fear. OR, we lean in and engage – we choose to do the hard work. Throughout recorded history, humans have exercised their prerogative to choose between those two options.


Whatever you believe (or don’t believe) about the story of Creation, most of you have run across the story of Adam and Eve. What happened when God came calling after they ate the forbidden fruit? They ran and hid…They made a choice to, in a sense, to run away from relationship…to (even if it was temporarily) to run and hide from reconciliation. Fortunately, for all of us, that didn’t last forever. Adam and Eve came out of hiding. 


Reconciliation takes

the two adversarial parties

choosing to come together.


And that happened. With no stories of reconciliation to imitate, where would we be?


Well there’s another biblical story that illustrates the other option; the option of leaning in. Genesis, the first book of the Bible, sets forth, in chapter thirty-two, the story of Jacob wrestling with God. As the story goes, Jacob wouldn’t let go until he got God’s blessing. He truly leaned in. He didn’t run and hide.


And the fight was worth it.


What might he have missed out on had he not leaned in? In his case, he got a new name – Israel – and a nation was born. Kind of a big deal…


Let me ask you a question:


Is there some big deal waiting for you should you make the choice to

lean in rather than

choosing to run away and hide?


I bet there is! Often choosing the lean-in path entails a struggle on the front end. It may even be a long-term struggle. But what’s the alternative? What is the other choice? It’s running away and hiding. And what “blessing” might you miss if you cower in fear?


Be courageous and lean in!


The “fight” is probably worth it! And if you choose to lean in and engage, you’ll be glad you did!



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