Kid you not, months back I was having a discussion with my parents regarding struggles I have. Food, fellas, and finances were the first three that came to mind in various ways. I jokingly said, “Ha! Oh the F words…” But let’s not forget fear. I told Bea Lyons once, “Fear is just another F word that’s not near as fun to say.” I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of allowing fear to define me. Fear of failing at something has crippled me more than most would believe. It’s the people pleaser part of my personality. A lot of people think that while I say a lot of what comes to mind I don’t care what others think but that’s incorrect. I, like most people, have cared and struggled with the opinions of others. That shouldn’t be what directs my steps though. Neither should fear.
Why do we allow fear to be this foul word that rules over us like a tyrant ruling his/her people as a horrible leader not allowing any joy? Fear is crippling. It slides in as this little voice whispering things that seem a little like truth but they’re far from it. “You won’t ever be able to overcome this obstacle because this is just who you are.” “You’ve gotten yourself too far into this hole to ever get out or let anyone know because they’d be appalled and ashamed. God won’t use you due to all that you’ve continued to do or not do.” WRONG (I really hope that you’re hearing a giant buzzer right now. One from a game show at that.)! Fear is a liar and we were made for more than what we all too often are willing to settle for. Is it easy to battle? No, but it’s worth it. A pastor friend of mine recently said something along the lines of, “We aren’t fighting for victory because it’s already been won (PRAISE GOD). We are fighting FROM victory.” Think of just how freeing that is. Freedom, now THAT is a beautiful F word. Faith is another. Because of God’s faithfulness through Holy Spirit, grace, goodness, pursuit, and etc…we can replace those dreadful things that have plagued our lives and vocabularies (believe me, I’m working on mine more than you know) with joy, faith, sincere rest, and the grace of God.
A life that is surrendered to God and His will is a life worth living. It’s easy to type but it’s hard to live at times because that means being willing to walk a path we don’t pick for ourselves. Seeing others get to live out some of the dreams we hoped for but knowing and trusting that God will align our heart to his make it worth it. He is good and will not hurt us. He’s the one that has the unfailing love and never ending grace we yearn for as we walk these rugged trails for the glimpses of a starry night we’ve only read about or the perfect view of peace we imagined from stories told to us as a child.
My verse for the year is Psalm 46:5, “God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved; God will help her when morning dawns.” Whew. To be reminded that as roots are going deeper while I wait on Him is refreshing. His preparation is part of the journey and his protection isn’t something to be feared…even though at times the wait is frustrating.
All this to say, here’s to replacing fear with faith, worry with obedience, and the lies with truth.