What was the last scary thing you did?
Getting away to try to get the last of Brave Beauty written, I approached the mountain house, ready to write my heart away. That was when I spotted it … little bear paws on the red rocking chairs! Sleeping in that home all night by myself … that was scary!
How about you? How did you feel when you had to do the scary thing?
I think it is important as we grow up to reflect now and then on how it feels to be scared because sometimes we can forget what it feels like to be genuinely terrified. We have done so many frightening things in our lives, we no longer remember how scary smaller things were when we were young.
I remember when I was in sixth grade, my church had a contest to see who could bring the most friends to church. Yes, I wanted to win, but I also wanted my friends to learn more about Jesus, who I had come to love. I was afraid to invite them, though. What if they thought I was weird for asking? What if they talked behind my back about how strange they thought I was? Finally, I got past the whirling worry in my head and went for it. I decided the worst that could happen would be that they said “no.” I did it scared.
When I read stories of others who are courageous and do scary things, I see something that many of them have in common: they did it scared.
Most of them never overcame being scared, but that didn’t stop them from being brave.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego obeyed God rather than Nebuchadnezzar and were thrown into a fiery furnace. I bet they were still scared, yet they obeyed God.
Nicodemus went at night to ask Jesus questions about things he didn’t understand. I wonder if it was because he was scared.
Rhoda tried to convince the adults that Peter wasn’t a ghost, but was really at the gate.
The woman at the well kept listening to Jesus even though He knew all about her sins.
They all did what they did even though they were probably shaking in their shoes!
Guess how many times the Bible says “fear not”? One translation has it 74 times. Seventy-four times God tells us to not be afraid. God told us “do not be afraid” so many times because He knows fear is a huge problem for us. While it might be normal, it is not what He wants for us. He wants us to be fearless.
Like all these Bible characters, finding the fearless you begins with finding faith in the God in you. By yourself, it is almost impossible to simply stop being afraid. When we teach ourselves the truth about the power that is within us, the same power that created the world and raised Jesus from the dead, that’s when our faith makes us fearless!
Like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego said: “Our God is able!” (Daniel 3:17) It’s not that they thought they were all that great; they knew their God was all that great. He can do anything. He is the one we can build our fearless faith on!
Is there a scary thing you’ve been shying away from that God can help you to be brave and go forward?