Another tragedy in a city and country that is dear to my heart. A tragedy that makes you stop and think about the state of the world. A tragedy that makes you ask questions about privacy versus security and what that really means. Is it scary? Sure it is. Is it possible bad things could happen if you venture out? If you travel? That is always a possibility. But I will not stop traveling, exploring, and experiencing. And you shouldn’t either.
Traveling is something that strips you of all of our normal comforts. You are forced out of your comfort zone and into a world you haven’t seen or been a part of before. You are forced to be an outsider. To experience something and someone new. Travel forces you to be an observer with a heightened sense of how diverse and big the world truly is, while at the same time, making you connect with humanity in a way that transcends race, ethnicity, political ideology, and residence. Travel strips you of prejudice and forces you to engage with a culture and people different from you. You are no longer surrounded by people you know. They don’t experience life like you or see the world the way you do. They most likely have very different opinions of the world and politics and even how best to shop for groceries, but the beauty of travel is that doesn’t matter.
You see travel has made me realize how much I still have to learn about America, people, the world, and God. I will forever be a student to a world so vast and full of beauty and connection. I have to keep traveling to get out of my own way. My own bubble to remind myself that the world is meant to be experienced and God meant for us to connect with one another. To love one another. To be humble in our approach to life and realistic about our time on earth. Our time is short. So go. Go and experience. Go and connect. Don’t give in to the fear of the what ifs. When fear takes over we miss out on love. When fear takes over we miss out on experiencing an abundant life. Fear means we reject others and let prejudice cloud our judgment. So don’t give in to the fear. Instead, choose to go. Go and see the beauty waiting for you on the other side of the border, ocean, world. You never know what you may see.
**Photo taken July 2015 in Brussels, Belgium. Originally appeared on Old Pink House.