Fear

This past week has been, to be completely honest, a major struggle for me.

In the midst of great opportunities and blessings from God, fear has had a major clamp over me. Whether it be anxiety about messing up on a play in football, worry about letting people down, or fear of making a mistake– the burden of fear has weighed heavy upon my soul. And I know it has been that way for many others for some time too– whether that time has been weeks, months, or years– fear has controlled our lives. Jesus told us the way to overcome these obstacles by one simple truth, LOVE. 1 John 4:18 says “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” First and foremost, we must accept Jesus’ free gift of eternal life in order to have true freedom and eternal life. That’s the overall and only true cure for our sin and death (Romans 6:23). But to think that all of our problems will suddenly disappear when we choose to follow Christ is to not accept the calling that He has put on us. Jesus told us that we would have trouble in this world, but to take heart because he has overcome this world. The battle between our old, sinful ways and following Christ is raging on everyday and that is when the love takes full affect. It takes an act of TRULY believing that God loves us and will never allow anything to overcome us in order for fear to be conquered. It takes an act of loving our God so much that we trust Him with everything because we don’t want to fear anything anymore, in order for His will to be done. It takes an act of loving others through humility and mercy at times the whole world would tell you to judge, in order for fear to be beaten, because then we no longer have to worry about what the world thinks or talks about us because we know we are serving our Creator and his acceptance means more.

I feel like a hypocrite because just last week I wrote a post about catching the adventure of our hearts and seizing the opportunity to honor God, and yet I’ve been scared to even step in to the role God has provided for me. I don’t want to mess up, but who doesn’t? The whole point about trying is to do our absolute best– for our team, ourselves, and most importantly (and most forgotten it seems) is for our Father, who loves us all the same through it all. It’s so easy for me to write and talk about serving and honoring God but when it comes to living out the freedom I know is mine, that’s a different story. God is so so powerful and I am ashamed to admit that I don’t trust Him completely sometimes, but each moment of everyday I am moving closer to surrendering my life (fears and all) to God because HE IS big enough to conquer it. I am realizing that Christ has called me to be a Christian competitor and that His vision for my life is not only for my good but to be a light in the darkness for others to see Him.

My dad sent me a text with a John Wayne quote in it this week that I have heard so many times but yet always manage to forget when I am “shaking in my boots”. The quote goes like, “Courage is being scared to death and saddling up anyway.”(!) (Emphasis mine). That is the very essence of trusting that God is in control of it all– both the bad and the good. If I mess up in a play, yeah it’ll cost me something, but the fight is not over, and God is still in control of the battle. My goal is to honor Him through humble victories and defeats because it is in our weakness that He shines bright. I would much rather another person (mainly God) step into my place so that I don’t have to take on this role, but I know that the purpose for this trial is to satisfy my long for adventure AND to bring Jesus glory through my personal redemption.

Now, this battle is a daily one for me, and has been for a long, long time, BUT I no longer want to live with this worry in my heart and fear in my soul. I think a part of me has actually wanted to have this fear because it means I have some sort of control over my emotions and life, but I don’t want it anymore. Even if that means I fail in order to give up control, it needs to happen (as scary as that is to write). I know my God is greater than anything in this whole world but sometimes, just as Peter sank into the water because of his fear, I stumble through life and forget Whose in control. As I sit here writing, I still fear for my next game, but I want my anthem to be “God’s got it” because I truly know He is in control.

“Always remember Whose you are and who you are.”

We are God’s children, that is our identity. And we are great and mighty warriors here on earth to serve our Father and defeat the fears of this world.

I hope this helps you in your fight because I know it has helped me to finally get words to my thoughts and to pinpoint my fears. I’m sorry if I have been all over the place with my thoughts here today but I pray that this would bring you closer to Jesus. May God bless you in your fight and may you always know that nothing can overcome us because nothing can overcome Jesus (not even sin and death).

One last verse for you to hold in your heart: 1 Peter 5:7. Cast all you anxiety on him because he cares for you. That is our ultimate peace in this life– that our Savior cares about us enough that we can throw all of our hurts on Him and He will take care of it and us.

God Bless You

-SM

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