We. Will. Not. Fear.

As I spent some time in reflection, prayer and devotion this morning, I became painfully aware of how much time I have wasted in fear this past month alone, never mind this year. I decided to get honest with myself and God about what exactly I have been afraid of.

Afraid to rise.

Afraid to run.

Afraid to wait.

Afraid to win.

Afraid to speak.

Afraid to be silent.

Afraid to shine.

Afraid to stay in the dark.

Afraid of getting stuck in the past.

Afraid of moving into the future.

Afraid to fly.

Afraid to fall.

Afraid to try.

Afraid to trust.

That last one.

That last one is where I felt the lump form in my throat and I knew the tears were coming. That last one is the true cause of everything else on the list.

Even as I have encouraged others to pursue purpose relentlessly, I have found myself at times stuck in a loop of “I trust you Lord!” 🔁 “Can I trust you Lord?”.

I’ve been afraid to trust people – just waiting to be let down, left alone, rejected, abandoned. I’ve been afraid to trust myself with anything new – afraid that the moment the pressure became too much, I would fall back into my old habits, patterns, defenses, and everything I’ve been building would crumble.

Yet this morning, as I read Psalm 46, I found myself overwhelmed at verses 1 & 2, where the psalmist reminds us that:

1 – God is our place of protection, and our source of strength.

2 – God is with us.

3 – Even in moments where it seems like the rug has been pulled out from under our feet, if the ground we are standing on crumbles, if the very mountains themselves can’t hold up and fall into the sea, We. Have. No. Need. To. Fear.

My prayer as we prepare to close out 2018, and step into 2019, is that we will experience God-given courage. Courage to step boldly, step hard – making our mark, and step higher – setting our hearts on His will and not our own.

Don’t end this year in fear. Instead, feed your faith and place your trust in the God who holds the sun, moon and stars in place – knowing that He holds your life in His hands too!

“And yet this was a SMALL thing…”

Then King David went in and sat before the Lord and said, “Who am I, O Lord God, and what is my house, that you have brought me thus far? And yet this was a small thing in your eyes, O Lord God. You have spoken also of your servant’s house for a great while to come, and this is instruction for mankind, O Lord God! And what more can David say to you? For you know your servant, O Lord God! Because of your promise, and according to your own heart, you have brought about all this greatness, to make your servant know it. Therefore you are great, O Lord God. For there is none like you, and there is no God besides you, according to all that we have heard with our ears.”

2 Samuel 7:18-22 ESV

This morning, I woke up completely overwhelmed by God’s relentless, reckless love for me. As I read this passage in 2 Samuel 7, and thought about who God is and all that He has done in my own life, I began to weep.

Like David, I asked who am I, so flawed, and insignificant, and undeserving that the Great God of Heaven would take all of my days, both good and bad, and make something so beautiful from them. And if the sum total of all that I have seen God do is merely “a small thing” for Him, then no matter the kind of moment I sit in right now, I can remain confident that the best is STILL yet to come!

This morning, be encouraged to pause for a moment, and look back over your own life. Identify the moments of deep sorrow, disappointment and heartache – it’s there we most clearly see God’s righteous right hand upholding us. Think back to the moments of unspeakable joy and unbridled celebration – there it is easy to see the Presence of the King who rejoices over us, where we see that His joy is our strength.

If you are struggling to find energy and focus for worship this morning, think of a Savior who was willing to sacrifice everything just. for. you. Who went down into the depths so that you could be raised to life again! The same Jesus who now sits at the right hand of His Father interceding continually on your behalf.

And like David, I’m sure you will come to the conclusion: “Therefore you are great, O Lord God. For there is none like you, and there is no God besides you, according to all that we have heard with our ears” (2 Samuel 7:22).

Live FREE!

“So if the Son sets you free, you are free through and through.”

John 8:36 (MSG)

“Christ has set us free to live a free life. So take your stand! Never again let anyone put a harness of slavery on you.”

Galatians 5:1 (MSG)

Live FREE.

As we come to the end of the first quarter of 2018, it can be tempting to fall back into the same traps that slowed our progress in past years. I have become vigilant in identifying and rejecting the broken cycles of fear and doubt that once held me captive, threatening to ensnare me once again.

Walking out our journey to lighter living, means being intentional about maintaining our freedom. We may not be able to control everything that happens to us in life, but we have been given the power to respond to life in a way that maintains our freedom.

Today, refuse to be entangled in situations, conversations, relationships, commitments, habits, or thought patterns that draw you away from God, and lead you back into bondage.

Rejoice in the freedom we have received, paid for with Christ’s sacrifice on an old rugged cross, and released to us by His resurrection from the grave.

Let God’s reckless love overtake you today, and live lighter!