Fear

The Refilling

Posted by on Apr 23, 2013 in Fear, His Love, Unworthiness | 4 comments

The Renewal Conference
 
The party’s over, guests have dispersed and fatigue is now threatening to do damage if the refilling doesn’t come soon.
 Six days ago I pulled out of my driveway prepared to speak at The Renewal Conference for early educators in Sacramento. I have to admit my anxious heart seemed as full as the trunk of my car when I left. I’d carefully packed all the necessary things – appropriate clothing, powerpoint equipment, notes and every other item I thought would adequately equip me– but my heart knew better.
Truth is I’ve never considered myself a speaker. It’s something I do but find it difficult to claim as something I am. A close friend of mine once told me I was very brave, that what I did took courage. She’s right. Every time I head out the door to present to a group – any group, I’m terrified. Whether it’s an hour before stepping forward or the moment an invitation is extended, eventually terror hits. The familiar numbing paralysis usually enters the deepest core of my gut, slowly creeping up my throat and settling in my mind. Doubt whispers, “Who do you think you are – you have nothing to say”.  And it’s right.
Not too long into the three hour drive I heard those words again.  Accusation of unpreparedness and incapability set the stage for the real message – unworthiness. As cars race alongside me and the freeway drones on reminding me that there’s no turning back, I’m trapped with my thoughts. Knowing I have a commitment to people I care about, this giant must be slain. Bravery must surface.
The shield of bravery is not self confidence in either my abilities or past accomplishments. I can’t drum it up by rereading my notes or plunging into more research. I must own the fundamental truth that my fears are warranted, I’m not worthy. I’m not adequately prepared – and by myself, I have nothing to say.
It’s said “perfect love casts out fear”. I claim that. Love is what propels me to say yes in the first place. Love is what keeps my car pointed in the direction of the conference. Love makes me brave. It’s more than a motivation – it fuels purpose and forms message.
Without this fundamental core acceptance I am not a speaker and in fact, cannot speak. Bravery is acknowledging without Christ I can do nothing. He encases everything I say and do. Love is my motivation and my message.
Standing in front of an audience pouring my heart out takes a tremendous amount of strength. It takes courage. But when I visibly see life and love take root from my words into someone else’s soul I’m energized with the same fuel it takes to remain standing and speaking – love fills us both. It’s an unmatched satisfaction, a force bigger than my own fear.
With an empty car and poured out soul – I wait.
I wait for the refilling that comes from him. Gratitude and solitude prepare a place.

 

 

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Boston

Posted by on Apr 17, 2013 in Courage, Fear, Our Hope | Comments Off on Boston

 

Darkness Cannot Extinguish His Light

 

 

Shortly after publishing my blog this morning I turned on the news. Like the rest of the nation I sat frozen in front of my TV digesting gruesome images from the Boston Marathon bombing. Once again our nation grieves. We drape our hearts with mourning cloth and pray this never happens to us. Our emotions bounce from shock to sorrow, from grief to anger.

As we look on, two other terrorists begin to knock at our heart’s door, cynicism and fear – dwellers of darkness. Although barely visible they somehow seem familiar to us because they always accompany catastrophe. They wait to join terror, challenging hope and trust. They collaborate to extinguish light.

Cynicism and fear are darkness dwellers. Their job is to overpower our perception of truth – truth promised to us. Without hope our hearts fail. Light fades. Without hope, trust weakens. We harden.

We have a choice to be in the light and of the light. Let us choose to let our tears run freely and glisten in his light. May we trust him by letting our hearts stay soft even at the expense of, and during pain. Our path will brightly light up with hope as our face points to the One we can fully trust.

Father, be near to the brokenhearted. Let your light shine brightly through our bottled tears, use them as beacons pointing toward you. Place your Holy Spirit at the door of the discouraged, turning away the intruders of despair and hopelessness. Amen.

The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear. The Lord is the stronghold of my life” Psalms 27:1

“For God, who said, Let light shine out of darkness made light shine in our hearts to give us understanding of his glory in the face of Christ” 2 Corinthians 4:6

 

 

 

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