A few weeks ago I messed up my index finger pretty bad while I was cutting a piece of wood with a miter saw. The next day, the nail turned purple and my finger began to swell. Unfortunately, I didn’t take a picture of it from the beginning (probably because it would have made me pass out to look at it long enough to take a picture). It was so bad that I ended up draining the blood out of it twice.
Since that time I’ve been watching my nail slowly begin the decaying process and make its exodus from the rest of my finger (see picture below). There was quite a bit of debate originally as to whether or not I’d keep my nail or lose it. I was arguing that I’d keep it and that I didn’t need to lose it. Really, I just didn’t like the idea of thinking of what was to come if I did lose it.
My wife has accused me of staring at my nail too much and of constantly talking about it. I can’t help it. It’s fascinating to watch each day’s development (not to mention the fact that I have to answer all the accusations about whether or not I’ve gone Emo and have started painting my nails black). And all of that time reflecting on my sad little nail has caused me to think about my approach to areas of growth in my life.
There are probably a handful of things in my life that need to die off so that something new (and better) can grow in its place. But how often do I try and save the nail and keep the new growth from coming? The biggest reason for this is fear. How much more would I develop into the man God has created me to be if I simply fostered a conducive environment for new growth without holding onto the old things?
Is there an area of your life that you are fighting new growth because you are unsure of what it would mean? Is fear causing you to be overly cautious and resistant to new opportunities? Let the nail go and embrace new growth.