It's no longer "fine"......We are called to be fearless!
Good morning sweet friends, Sometimes it is hard to see the big picture of our lives with all of it's threads and all of the growth and where we have come from, especially if we are living in what my friend Mandie calls "Hurricane Season." It is so very easy to get lost in what is consuming us in the moment. For this reason, I, on occasion, will venture through old Bible study notes or old journals to see where I have been and where I am now. It is so comforting to look back to what two or three years ago seemed my desperate need and realize, " I conquered that!" Or to offer a thankful heart for prayers answered or a thankful heart a prayer was not!:) You've been there?:) I encourage you to do the same.....never miss a chance to see where He has brought you. It does a soul good to know we have changed and will continue, and renews HOPE to press on!
With this in mind, I have been wanting to be bold and courageous for years......wanting to escape fear that hindered my growth. I found in my old notes from a study with Angela Thomas that FEAR is most often stated for keeping us from our divine purpose. Fear of failing. Fear of Him not showing up if we take a leap of faith. Fear of what someone would think if we actually lived set apart? Fear of speaking the truth, so we often just sugar coat things with ....."it's fine," when truly it is not fine! Fear to be MORE. Fear to have big dreams. Fear to Believe in the impossible. Fear that if you surrender, where will it take you? Fear that we aren't worthy or equipped. Paralyzed by fear we often choose to settle for a life far from our calling. 1 John 4: 16-18 speaks boldly about fear and what it is not.....
God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them....There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.
Sweet friends, if we are living burdened by FEAR.....it says His love is not complete in us! It says there is MORE! It says we are still missing it, and to me it says, Press In! To my heart these words also speak hope, because it speaks that we CAN find a place of love....a place that drives out fear! Can you even imagine living without fear? Priceless! While I won't say that I have abandoned all fear, I have grown tremendously in my walk from fear. And I can see this truth of John.....my love has grown immensely and with that love fear has had to go. No place for you here! I stand amazed, even lately, how this once cowardly woman speaks boldly what is on my heart.......who is this woman He is making me? (Beth Moore) I have to tell you that I feel like the world has been lifted from my shoulders, because so often we struggle with what we fear. And I don't know if it is my way or the "southern way", but I have walked around making so many people feel like "it's fine" to the point that I wasn't fine. Do you know the feeling? The fear of speaking truth can paralyze us! Speaking truth in love, however, has the power to free us! And this I know...thank you Jesus!
A woman paralyzed by fear is not living her calling. We were called to love! We were called to live full and to be a light, and we must stop seeking to make everyone else in our "little worlds" comfortable, and seek to live a fearless life so that we don't miss His perfect love or a chance to lead another to it! While it is certainly not easy, can we be a woman who can look her friend in the eye and say, No it is not okay that you continue with a relationship with a married man. I don't care how horrible his marriage is....it is not fine! And no you can't spend Saturday night in a bar getting wasted and play church girl on Sunday. It is not fine! A woman who can say, I stand for marriage the way God designed and nothing less. A woman who can say, I will not shop at Abercrombie regardless of how much my daughter begs me, because they are borderline giving out porn on their shopping bags to our children. It is not fine! A woman who can say to a man, your words and actions are inappropriate and disrespect me, and I would rather be alone than with a man not of God. It is no longer fine! Your addiction is not okay, because of your childhood. It is not fine! Your bitterness is not okay, because you are justified. It is not fine! Your promiscuity is not acceptable because you are lonely and had a hard life. It is not fine! And perhaps, the woman you must have this hard discussion with reflects you in the mirror. I guess I should have placed a warning to begin....you're going to need your big girl panties for this one;) Sweet friends, we are called to be set apart! And we are doing more harm to those we love and ourselves, by fooling either to think that any of this is fine.
Now please know that I am not saying to judge or condemn, but to fearlessly speak truth in love. And love on them and pray for them, and support them and lead them to HIM where HE is waiting to say,
You are MINE! And Anything less than what I have for you is NOT FINE! It is captivity, and I came with a great price to set the captives free. So be free.
If I look back through my life, my birth of change came when a dear friend spoke some very convicting words in to my broken little heart. I understand you are hurting, but this is not fine! I was so uncomfortable by her truth that I changed. And as hard as it was to hear, I will be forever grateful to her because I can now say from an authentic heart....I am free! And of all that I have tasted of this world, nothing compares to this!
Seek. Love. Follow.
In His Wings, Ro