“Don’t give God worry prayers”
I was watching Lisa Bevere recently and she was speaking on the subject of fear, trials, being bold, persevering and overcoming complacency when dealing with situations in our lives that we can’t calculate the cost…the future etc. This particular teaching caught me in a moment where I am literally in a place in my life where I have to decide whether or not I’m going to avoid doing something that I feel the Lord is calling me to do simply because I can’t ‘calculate’ the what if’s or am I going to trust…blindly.
It’s the crossroad.
We all face crossroads in our faith.
A big decision.
That place where faith intersects with our fear and we make that choice…that switch in our hearts…that says “I believe you…or I don’t believe you”
It’s that place in our mind that says “I don’t really understand..and perhaps I don’t have to”
It’s that place that wakes up to the same circumstances with a different perspective.
It’s that place in our being that wanders out into a foreign land with one foot in front of the other and follows a subtle footprint in front of us…because the knowing deep within whispers
In the teaching Lisa read James 1:2-8
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God,who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. 6 But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. 7 That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.”
There are so many nuggets in these verses I hardly know where to begin however one portion in particular really caught my attention –
“let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete,…not lacking anything.”
What do you lack? Do you lack faith…God will call you to do something that requires faith. Do you lack trust…life will bring trials that force you to trust. Do you lack perseverance? Do you lack hope? Do you doubt? Do you lack…anything?
I know one of the things I often lack is trust…I don’t like not being able to calculate the cost. I don’t like not being in control. I don’t like being uncomfortable. I don’t like the unknown. I don’t like being uncertain. I don’t like feeling like I might not have a way out.
I have mentioned in previous posts that from the age of 14-21 I was in an incredibly abusive relationship. This particular relationship took parts of my being. This relationship that I allowed had me feeling as though I was a prisoner, a hostage..unable to breath. It wasn’t that I couldn’t get out…but the prison of my mind…my lack of faith and trust in a God that would make a way out for me kept me from stepping out in faith for 7 years.
7 years of my life I spent spinning my wheels.
7 years of my life I spent hiding who I was.
7 years of my life I spent trying to be something I wasn’t
7 years of my life I spent scared
7 years of my life I spent …or rather wasted opportunities, relationships, hope, purpose.
Everything in me wanted to get out. Everything in me wanted to breathe. Everything in me wanted to hope and yet my mind kept saying what if…
what if he harms you more
what if he harms your family
what if you never find someone else
what if you find someone worse
I what if’d myself for 7 years of my life in spite of God speaking directly to me through his word, through others and through circumstance after circumstance because I couldn’t calculate what would happen.
The thing about being able to calculate…is that it requires
Being able to calculate everything requires
Being able to calculate everything requires
I could have stayed there. …forever…or until he killed me or I killed myself…because I was already dying inside. I could have stayed there…comfortably uncomfortable. I could have stayed there…but the Lord spoke…He spoke and for whatever reason I finally listened….
I can’t imagine what would have taken place had I not listened. I can’t imagine the areas of lack in me that the Lord wanted to make complete that I would have just kept buried beneath my disobedient heart. I can’t imagine those places He wanted me to follow subtle footprints to complete my lack of trust…to remove my doubt and increase my faith…
I can’t imagine.
And yet here I am…once again in a foreign place where I can’t calculate everything. I don’t know the outcome and yet it is a freeing place to be because He who counts and calculates my every moment, my every breath and my every day KNOWS.
So back to the worry prayers…you might be in a place like me, where you know that you need to do something different, make a decision, step out into unknown territory that you can’t calculate. Maybe you are in a place where the Lord wants you to
Whatever that means…
Don’t pray about it and then take it back and worry about it…Pray, Listen and then act in faith…
I think back to the amount of times I have prayed and worried at the same time..which is actually an oxymoron. My greatest faith building moments have and continue to be those places when I pray, release in faith and listen for His lead and actually follow …
I want to ‘ just follow’…and yet I don’t know exactly what all of that really means for tomorrow or next week or next year but I’m going to stay close enough by His side to move where He tells me to move….so that I lack nothing…so that my doubt turns to belief and so that my faith and trust become stronger than my fear…so that I become more like Him.
Yeah…that sounds pretty good to me; a faith stronger than fear…that’s a good place to start.