This post was written back in May … But as I was sorting through my draft file, I found this little gem, and realized I’m working through all of this love/fear/faith stuff now more than ever.
As I’m taking an intentional break from my workaholicism right now … Waiting and hoping to find love and worth without the paycheck or accolades I rely upon for them … This conversation about love meeting fear is exactly where I’m at.
At the end of the post, I have a few questions for you. I hope you join in the conversation here, or on my social media page.
“Dear God, forgive me for my cowardice. The times I let fear keep me back from your call, the life you want me to live.”
For a long time, I thought the opposite of fear was courage.
God tells us the opposite of fear is love.
What would you do if you know that no matter how far on a limb you went, you would be loved the whole time? What dreams would you pursue if you knew God loved you, family loved you, dear friends loved you –and that love wouldn’t even be rocked in the slightest by what could potentially be your greatest failure?
There are a lot of things I fear.
Big spiders (obviously).
Sharks. I’m deathly afraid of sharks. Thankfully I don’t interact with them much.
But there are the real fears I face every day … Not the ones made of nightmares or active imagination.
Fear that I will waste my day.
Fear that I haven’t accomplished enough at age 34.
Fear that things will in fact not change … That the obstacles I face now will face me forever.
Fear that I will die without making a significant impact on the world.
Fear that I will die without accomplishing my goals.
Fear of my children being hurt — and not just the hurt of normal life experiences — but the hurt of someone intentionally taking advantage of them, wounding then, using them for their own gain of pleasure.
I fear not being a good enough parent. Will my children love God? Will they have a confidence about them? Will they love for themselves, or will they live for others?
Fear that I will write my book, and it will flop.
Fear –and this one has become scary enough to prevent me from writing — that I am simply not happy enough. That when people come to me or my writing, I have let enough of myself out to drain the other person, instead of lift them up.
I don’t want to be a drain-er.
And this fear is rooted in the fear of all fears … That there is something inherently wrong with me and my personality. That my best bet is to hide, create a false sense of who I am, or to stay silent.
His love is transformative. Life is about being on a journey … Not arriving. It’s about his character infusing us every day to be more like Him. Strengthening the parts of ourselves that reflect him …
Freeing us from the parts of our character that were never in his original design.
His love gives us security. Not that WE are enough, but that He is enough. That when we are rooted in him, when we are secure in him, we don’t need accomplishments to give us purpose. We accomplish only to live out the purpose his love has already given.
His love shifts our eyes. It becomes less about what others might think of us (am I worthy of their attention) … And more about looking around. Seeing everyone around us as someone we can serve.
His love lets us be messy. Allows us to make mistakes. It allows us to be and not just do.
Facing fear is not about mustering up our courage. It’s about finding our source of true love and acceptance, and grounding ourselves to it.
Which might be the simplest thing … And the hardest thing … We’ll ever have to do.
What do you fear? How do you try to find acceptance and love outside of God? How has that served you? What would your life look like if you could be grounded in God’s love and acceptance? And what keeps you from feeling loved?