In 1980 Richard Gottlieb, editor for The New Yorker, refused to include Jamaica Kincaid’s short essay, “A Small Place,” in the book review section of the magazine because he felt, “…it was too angry.” The tone of Kincaid’s essay is polemic. But, it is an earnest discourse of the destructive impact that subjugation had on her tiny island, Antigua, and its inhabitants. She argues that subjugation, for the oppressor, and the oppressed, is a small place with no room for growth – the suppression of wrong thinking.
Object of Pity
I must admit that I pitied everyone in Kincaid’s essay. Somewhat bemused that their stations in life varied from extremely wealthy to extremely poor; yet, they had one thing in common – they, all, were small thinkers. Much to my surprise and disappointment, I, too, became an object of my own pity.
What, No Way!
During one of our morning devotions, my husband, Larry Huggins, said, “Loretta, God just told me that He is making me a bigger thinker, and He is going to make you a big thinker!” Oh, how husband-Huggins was thrilled at the Word of God. But wife-Huggins was quite offended. What! He’s a big thinker, and I am not! I resisted that Word. It was apparent to me that husband-Huggins was having an episode of I-ate-too-much-pizza-last-night: the only reasonable explanation for his off-the-wall “word.”
Nevertheless, God is always faithful to His promises, and the promise He made to Larry Huggins that morning was no exception. By His Holy Spirit through the Word of Christ, God lovingly revealed to me that I was, indeed, a small thinker trapped by fear: of rejection, of failure, of parenting – and much more. Fear had confined me to a tiny space – with no room for growth.
If anxiety has trapped you in a small place, as it once trapped me, then I encourage you to look to God because He is LOVE. And He, LOVE, will never put limits on your thinking. Allow your heart to take comfort in this truth – perfect love casts out all fear! LOVE sets us free to visualize, to dream, to think BIG!
Recommended Scripture reading: 1 John 4:18, and Colossians 3:16
Loretta Huggins is a mother, a wife, a pastor, a skilled and experienced bible teacher, and an author. She holds a degree in English Literature. She grew up in a Pastor’s home, worked in international Haute Couture, and has traveled extensively.