But as soon as this had happened, the vision cast Jesus into a desert of uncertainty, where for 40 days he wrestled with the Resistance, where he came face to face with fear, and still the divine vision endured. Then, when John was arrested, Jesus returned to Galilee, where he started working toward the goal. “It starts now,” he said. “The goal is close. Turn your life around! It’s going to be awesome.”
Steven Pressfield (The War Of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle. Rugged Land, 2010) calls it Resistance. It’s the the self-doubt and self-sabotage that manifests itself within you the moment you are certain you know what you are really, truly called to do.
Have you ever brought home a treadmill and let it gather dust in the attic? Ever quit a diet, a course of yoga, a meditation practice? Have you ever bailed out on a call to embark upon a spiritual practice, dedicate yourself to a humanitarian calling, commit your life to the service of others? Have you ever wanted to be a mother, a doctor, an advocate for the weak and helpless; to run for office, crusade for the planet, campaign for world peace, or to preserve the environment? Late at night have you experienced a vision of the person you might become, the work you could accomplish, the realized being you were meant to be? Are you a writer who doesn’t write, a painter who doesn’t paint, an entrepreneur who never starts a venture? Then you know what Resistance is.
Jesus knew the Resistance. We all know the Resistance. But the Resistance depends entirely on the fact that there is something you know, deep down, you are supposed to do. It is, in fact, an indication that what you experienced at the moment of your baptism really was true.
It took John’s arrest for Jesus to realize that the only way to get out of the desert, to get past the uncertainty and the fear about being God’s child with God’s message, was to start living it. The only way to stop being a “writer who doesn’t write, a painter who doesn’t paint,” is to start writing or painting. The only way to be a mother, a doctor, an advocate, to change the planet – is to start. So Jesus started. And he changed the planet.
So. What are you waiting for?