Here's her post. (side note- it starts off with a post she'd written a couple of months ago- then continues with the 'follow up') (side note #2- in addition. Should let you know when she sent this to me- I did the ugly cry. I mean...the REAL ugly cry. Was what I needed to read. Love you Caralyn)
God has not given me a spirit of fear.
God told me he would never leave me or forsake me.
He told me not to be anxious, because he would take care of me.
He takes hold of my hand and walks with me, and tells me not to fear, because he is with me, that he will help me.
He told me to be strong and courageous, that I should not be afraid for He is with me, and he is walking with me, and that he will never leave me nor forsake me.
He gave me peace. Not fear. Peace. He told me not to let my heart be troubled by fear.
I recognize the fear.
I'm calling out the fear. And I'm searching and praying for His perfect love.
'There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love."
Not gonna lie, the last sentence kinda makes me feel as though because I have fear, I'm not truly a believer, not really saved.
Because shouldn't I not have fear? Do I not have his perfect love? Do I have to work towards that?
Is that only when I get to heaven, or should I feel no fear now?
I didn't intend to end this on an inquisitory note."
I wrote this blog several months ago. I had recognized that I lived fearfully, and no longer wanted to do that. but at the end of my blog, I read a verse that made me feel... less than adequate as a believer. I thought that because I feared, I was not in Christ's love.
Not a surprising thought from the girl who is scared.
My life is about to go through some major upheavals. I'm finally finally finally graduating from college, I'm looking for a new job, I'm planning to move to Portland, Oregon, I'm going to start all over in finding friends, community, and my place in this world [MWS, anyone?]
I will also be very far away from both sisters and my parents. I will be far away from everything that has been familiar.
That starts to become panic inducing for me. What if I don't get a job? What if I have to stay in Tyler? What if I fail my boards? What if I don't make friends? What if? What if?
And I start to become afraid.
Recently, however, I listened to a sermon by Mark Driscoll called "Jesus and Anxiety". He spoke on a chapter in Luke, 12:22-34
22And he said to his disciples, "Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat, nor about your body, what you will put on. 23For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. 24 Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! 25And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? 26If then you are not able to do as small a thing as that, why are you anxious about the rest?
27Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 28But if God so clothes the grass, which is alive in the field today, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will he clothe you, O you of little faith! 29And do not seek what you are to eat and what you are to drink, nor be worried. 30For all the nations of the world seek after these things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31Instead, seek his kingdom, and these things will be added to you.
32 "Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. 33 Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with moneybags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moth destroys. 34 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
The part that stuck out to me the most is where Jesus says, "Fear not."
He doesn't say it in a manner that, if I fear, I'm not part of him. He doesn't say it angrily. He says it softly. "Fear not, little flock."
He tells them to fear not, because he knows they fear.
Because he knows they will fear in the future.
Because fear resonates within all of our souls.
What if life doesn't go the way I planned? What if this happens? What if that happens? What if???
And Jesus just keeps telling us to "fear not".
Because he doesn't want me to be anxious or afraid.
Because even though I don't know the whole story, He does. And he has a beautiful, beautiful plan for me. A plan that doesn't want to harm me.
Because it brings him pleasure... GOOD pleasure, to give me the kingdom.
Because he takes care of the lilies, and the ravens, and the beasts of the field. And how much more will he take care of me, of so little faith?
Because he loves me.
Over and over and over he tells me through out the bible, "Fear not! For I am with you.
Fear not! For I am your shield.
Fear not! For I will bless you.
Fear Not! Do not be dismayed.
Fear not! I will come with a vengeance and come save you.
Fear Not! For I am the one who helps you.
Fear not! For I have redeemed you, I have called you by name, you are mine.
Fear not! Do not be afraid!
Fear not! Peace be with you, be strong and of good courage!
Fear not! My spirit remains with you!
Because he knows that I become afraid. But he loves me, and he is with me, and he will keep me.
I'm letting the burden of my fears go today.. because I have considered the lilies. And they are lovely. And my Jesus loves me more than lilies.