Hebrews 13:6 - So we may boldly say: "The LORD is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?"
As I listened to Our pastor, Rory Grooters, talking one Sunday about how it is imperative we overcome our fears by facing our giants, I began to think again about how I constantly believe I am much better at writing than speaking about Jesus. I know deep inside this is a lie...one that trips me up every time.
What is our greatest fear? This is a question we should all ask ourselves and set aside some time to talk to God about and ask for His strength and guidance.
We are to do it afraid. Whatever that fear might be. We must go through the fear to overcome it. Doing that shows our total reliance on the Lord. We all have weaknesses and a need for One greater than we who will do what is exactly necessary for any circumstance. We are only to be the vessel, the conduit, for His work through us. If that sounds like a controlling God, it isn't. He has only our best interests in mind and knows exactly what He needs to do to bring about good. On our own we are nothing.
Before I go on to explain what happened next, let me just add that in Sunday school we are, as I've mentioned, doing a study on The Power of a Whisper...Hearing God. Having the Guts to Respond by Bill Hybels.
We listened as several people on a video shared how they heard God speak to them with assurance, admonition or action. As they spoke it reminded me of occasions when that familiar "voice" spoke to me in similar ways. I'm sure everyone in class could have shared many instances themselves. Hearing about these circumstances was a joy to listen to, even when the word God spoke to these individuals might have been difficult to hear. Even the words God chooses to speak to us can bring about the, "Oh, no, not that God!" However, it was confirmation that God really does speak to His people. It's always good to hear others' stories because you can no doubt relate to some of them.
Well, as I listened to Pastor speak, I heard that still small voice right there in church. He interrupted with a sort of admonishment to me! What I heard was, You like being alone so why fear what anyone thinks of you? You are in My hands, not theirs. I am all you need. Well...put - me - in - my - place!!
I am comfortable on my own. What do I care what someone might think? And then the thought zipped through that it's the possibility of rejection I fear. Of course it is! No one wants to be rejected by those around them, especially if they call themselves your friend(s).
We are to be in the world but not of it. When I first came to Christ there was one particular friend I had to let go of because I was no longer like her. It wasn't my choice; it was God's. I began to realize that conversations no longer uplifted me and her actions no longer interested me. It's all about the change that takes place when you receive Christ. Changes for the better.
So...fear! There is a scripture I have taped to our computer that should define exactly what I should fear the most: But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven (Matthew 10:33). What do I fear most? Being denied by Jesus or my friends? Isn't this the will of our Father for our lives? To proclaim Him? Glorify Him? Acknowledge Him? Be obedient to His call?
Perhaps my solitude will come because of my quest to be "out there" for Christ. Perhaps the Lord has been preparing me for that. Oh, I would prefer it the other way around, that when I do talk of the Lord, my words would draw these individuals to Him as well...and I would have the best of both worlds...friends who come to know Jesus and become life-long friends of my own. But the important question is: Do we want friends or Jesus? Which will bring us eternal life?
If God is for us, who can be against us? Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. (Romans 8:31,37, 1John 4:4)