Cathy Bien serves as the Director of Communications at Resurrection. She and her husband Rick have been members of the church for 22 years and have four adult children.
Today’s GPS reflection asks the question “How can you keep fear from making you turn your back on God’s exceptionally good life?”
“God’s exceptionally good life” – I want that!
But I’m not there yet, so I have to ask myself, “How is fear holding me back?” I’ve committed my life to following and serving God, but I’ll admit, there are those moments when I, like the Israelites give in to my fears. So, what am I afraid of?
I’m afraid it’s going to be too hard. Following Jesus isn’t always easy. Sometimes we’re called to do things that we don’t want to do, to step out of our comfort zones. Our fear of the unknown can be paralyzing. It’s kind of like standing at the edge of the high dive. This is when we have to hold on to Jesus’ promise that he will always be with us and take that first step. (And like going off that diving board, it can be exhilarating!)
(Jesus said) I am with you always, to the very end of the age. Matthew 28:20
I’m afraid it’s going to hurt. The Israelites were afraid of physical pain and death. I’m grateful that I don’t face a physical threat because I follow Jesus. My fear of being hurt is more emotional. Relationships are challenging. When we open our hearts to another person, we risk being disappointed. When we let ourselves become vulnerable, we risk rejection. This loving your neighbor thing is hard. What if I put myself out there and the other person doesn’t reciprocate? What if I create something and people hate it? That very well might happen, but it’s okay, because we can count on the promise that nothing can separate us from God’s love.
I’m convinced that nothing can separate us from God’s love in Christ Jesus our Lord: not death or life, not angels or rulers, not present things or future things, not powers or height or depth, or any other thing that is created. Romans 8:38-39
I’m afraid I’ll have to give up control. Here’s the big one that gets me every time. I like to be in control. In my human arrogance and stubbornness, it’s easy to think that I know best. Truly opening myself up to God’s will feels a lot like falling without a net. But, I am learning that when I step out in faith and trust in God, I have nothing to fear. It’s humbling to look back and wonder how I could possibly have thought that I could do life on my own.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart; don’t rely on your own intelligence. Know him in all your paths, and he will keep your ways straight. Proverbs 3:5-6
We all have fears. Yours may be different from mine, but whatever we fear, God can release us from it. The lesson from the Exodus is that God doesn’t give up on us. Instead he promises to walk through our fears with us and bless us with an “exceptionally good life.” All we have to do is accept this great gift of love.
There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear. 1 John 4:18a
Lord, help me to be fearless, to trust and follow you. Amen
Return to the GPS Guide to read today’s scripture and reflection questions.