“When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.”

                                         -Audre Lorde, The Cancer Journal

At times we all are afraid. Often these fears are unfounded; they’re notions conjured up by voices in our heads that say we will be judged, shamed, humiliated, or chastised. Should we curl up in the fetal position and give in to the fear; what happens then? Would Tesla, be “Tesla”, would Spielberg have created “E.T.” and numerous other movies, would Amazon deliver packages to your doorstep in two days? What about your favorite mom and pop shop? Would you miss out on some of the best barbequed ribs or icebox lemon pie?

I believe we all have gifts and we are urged to use them to bring joy to others. I believe when we follow our passions and hone our skills and dare to take a risk to share them, we are fully living. When our fear outweighs our faith, we cheat the world out of something special. I sometimes wonder about all the novels unwritten, the songs unsung or the ideas never shared. What have we missed?

It is scary to put your thoughts, ideas, and dreams out there. Nelson Mandela, Franklin Roosevelt, Mark Twain, and Bruce Lee are all credited with statements akin to: Courage is not the absence of fear but acting despite fear.  Some people are cruel. Some people will laugh. Sometimes you will fail. I say, do it anyway. If it brings peace, or healing or joy to one person, then we are truly living a Lighted Life. Dare to shine your light.

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