Everything good in my adult life has almost been undercut by fear.
Just a few examples:
I was afraid to get married.
I was afraid to have our first child.
And our second, and third, and on down to the 6th.
I’m afraid my wife wants to have a 7th.
I was sort of afraid to get my masters degree.
I was really afraid to get my PhD.
I was afraid to write my first book.
And my second, and third, and on down to the 6th.
I’m afraid my wife wants me to write a 7th.
I was afraid to build my basement by myself.
I was afraid to do a triathlon and swim a mile in open water.
I was afraid to recently illustrate a book.
I was afraid to take a job as a university professor and move my family.
I’m afraid what you are thinking as I write this.
I was, and am, afraid.
But I’ve learned something about fear over my adult years.
I’ve learned for myself that fear is not from God (see 2 Timothy 1:7).
God wants us to do good, and that good often requires the risk of putting ourselves out there.
Masquerading as our protective (read: lying) friend, fear wants us to do nothing.
The problem with listening to fear is that it immobilizes us.
Fear doesn’t know where to go, only where not to go.
Fear doesn’t know what to say, only what not to say.
Fear closes its eyes, turns its head, and freezes.
Fear falsely forms protective, padded walls all around us, defending against all possible failures, and thus all possible success. Fear is the emotion of immobility.
Thus, fear is a prison. Fear is damning. Fear is hell.
Being faithful doesn’t mean we won’t have fears. But it does mean that we recognize fear for what it is: an impediment to the divine promptings of the inner soul. When you read this, tell your fears where to get off, so you can get on.