“The solution to fear is not courage but love…’There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear.’ (1 John 4:18). The more we allow ourselves to be filled with the love of God, the less room we will have for fear. When we are confident in our Father’s immense, complete, constant love for us, we won’t be afraid anymore.” –Rolland and Heidi Baker (Reckless Devotion)
For most of my life I have been a very cautious person. I don’t stick my head too far out there. I don’t put my heart too much on the line. Don’t want to rock the boat. I value peace and security.
Unfortunately, a safe and wave-less life is not at all what God has called me to. He created me for adventure. I am being pushed into the deep end, and it won’t be the swimming pool much longer. I don’t want to settle for a piece of His purpose; I want all of it.
That’s easy to say and difficult to live. I tremble before the smallest ripple. I get nervous to organize an event, when I know God has called me to run and restructure entire organizations. It would be so easy to live for minimum. I could still do more than anyone ever expected of me. Everyone that is, except God. He knows better. He knows what He created me to do. And He is ultimately the only One who matters.
That will require…gasp…taking risks. A lot of them. Constantly. I need to build my faith muscles. I need to build my skills. I need to learn to jump at the slightest movement of God moving me forward. I must dive in and trust Him to fill me and give me everything I need.
Yesterday I was reading about the great missionaries of the 1800s, and William Carey jumped off the page at me. My lesson said that Carey translated the Bible or significant parts of the Bible into 35 languages. I thought about my meager goal to learn 5 languages and wondered if Carey was insane or if I was underestimating what God can do with a person’s life that is willing and ready to be used by Him. And you know what? Translating the Bible wasn’t the only thing Carey did with his life. He did a lot more as a missionary in India. So the question I have been asking myself is: am I truly ready and willing? If God said to me today, “Jump!” Would I hesitate? Could I believe that He could do immeasurably more with my life than I ever asked or imagined?
The fact that what He asks of me could be anything and everything scares me. So I run to God’s presence and drink in His love, trusting that He will make me ready…not before the risk comes, but the truth is He makes us ready in the process as we obey. When I signed the contract and boarded the plane to be a missionary in South America, I absolutely did not have what it takes to plant a church and raise up leaders. However, every step of the way He has given me what I needed as I put myself out there in faith. Last Friday was a perfect example of that. I was nervous to translate and promote a martial arts event. However, God filled me with His power, and before I knew it, I was praying healing over peoples’ lives with authority and translating like crazy in His strength. He gives us what we need, and not a minute sooner or later.
It’s risky business following Jesus. I am a dreamer, but I have not always been good at dreaming God-sized dreams. I want to catch His vision and live not in in His courage, but in His love. God, would You make me more like You today? Would You fill me up even more? Will You help me to see my future, not through the eyes of fear, but with the perspective of perfect trust and peace? I will trust You for today. And tomorrow, I will trust You for tomorrow.