Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Fear

I don't have an answer for everything. The truth is, sometimes I don't have an answer for much at all. Sometimes I'm just downright scared.
 
As a little girl I always battled fear. I had a pretty easy childhood, a wonderful Christian family and a safe home. Yet, I battled an overwhelming fear for years. Mostly before bed I would feel a sense of panic. But in general, I was afraid of my own shadow. I let my little brave sister take a lot of lead because of my shyness. I was an embarrassed not-so-good reader. Not to mention I was always worried someone in my family was going to die. Night after night Dad sat on the edge of my bed and prayed over me. He told me that God is always going to be there and take care of us.  I begged him not to leave my side... it was too scary alone. But he had to leave. I cried in fear as I lay awake night after night.
 
I grew out of that as the years passed. My fear of being in front of people passed. I got to the point where I actually sang in front of people at church. My Mom figured out that I couldn't read well because I could hardly see, so I got glasses. Before I knew it, I would sleep through the night. The fear faded.
 
Fast-forward to last week. When I heard about the turmoil in the Middle East, I was uneasy. I realized that that could apply to Josh. I feared that World War 3 would break out. That he could be deployed before our wedding. I asked Dad what all of this meant for the US. He sighed as he said we would just have to "wait and see." When I got back to my room that night. I felt it. That fear. I hadn't felt anything like that since those dark nights in my room as a child. Over the past few months I've had things to be afraid of. I wondered back in January if Josh would end up in Japan for 3 years... I mean, there were things to be afraid of. But this time, it was different. This kind of fear makes God feel far away, it makes you want to believe lies, it makes all that you know to be true flee, it takes your breath away. Suddenly I was eight years old again laying in my bed crying. I was just begging God to take away the fear. The fear of what? What I have no control over. The broken world around me, the people in my life, the circumstances that threaten to surround me. Yet, thankfully, as I quoted Scripture it ebbed.
 
That fear comes back sometimes even when there is nothing to be afraid of. Even when my family tells me that everything is okay it comes. It makes bitterness easy, anger a first choice and excuses comfortable. It is lies from the Satan and his demons. They hate me and Who I stand for. Fear is one of their sharpest tools.
 
The words of David in Psalms mean more to a heart that is weak. "I waited patiently for the Lord; He turned to me and heard my cry." Psalms 40:1
 
I know that when all is easy, it is easy to rely on your own strength. I feel that a lot of my strength is gone and so I turn to the One who never leaves me. He's there. I'm still scared. I don't have an answer for everything. I am not depressed. I'm joyful, but I feel the battle that "is not against flesh and blood" a lot these days. I need His strength. I know you do too. I wonder if you have ever felt this way? Hopefuly something I have said has encouraged you.
 
I will brace myself and fight with the sword, the Word of God. When fear arises, I stand. I will not fall, because where do I stand? I stand on the Solid Rock and you know what? The view is really nice up here.
 

Friday, September 7, 2012

The Thing About Waiting

I just read a blog post entitled, I don't wait anymore. If you have time, read the link below.... if not, skip and I'll explain. I realize by saying that none of you will read the link... It's okay! I appreciate you for coming to Hearts On Things Above in general!
 
 
I guess when I first read this I was expecting to shoot it down with my comebacks of non-dating jargon (but, it's not really jargon!).
 
It's a pretty long blog post from February 3, 2012, by a girl that I know almost nothing about. I read a few more of her posts just to get to know her better. I couldn't find anything about her though. I really expected to majorly disagree with this post.
 
For those who don't have time to read it, I'll sum it up. She started out by saying that she as a 25 year old woman took off the "True Love Waits" ring she had had on her finger since she was 16. She said that she decided that she is "not waiting anymore." My first thought was that she just wanted to be "wild." But no. She said that years of waiting seems to be wrecking many girl's view of God. How? Well, she says that all of these Youth Pastor's encouragement to "love God first if you want a husband" seems like a bribe to God. Her exact words were, "A lot of girls were sold on a deal not on a Savior."
 
Hmm.
She said that it begins back a decade ago for most of these women. They filled out a piece of paper with True Love Waits on it and laid it on an altar somewhere. After years trusting and waiting and waiting on God to bring them someone, they chuck it. They find that if this God is connected to this inability to get a guy, then they don't really want Him either... or church.
 
Heavy, right? Well, if a girl is that shallow then she has a problem anyway. I don't believe that not getting a boyfriend should make a Christian girl want to chuck the Church and God altogether. That's nuts.
 
But hang on... I also think that the obsession with "waiting" is wrong. It's not a bribe with God. Just because we love Him, it doesn't mean we'll get the love of a husband within this certain time period we predetermine. She said that she lived like she was waiting for something.
 
So here is where my thoughts come in. Her post made me think about the attitude I've seen in "waiting" girls on occasion. It's not universal, but I see it a lot more than I used to. What? The near obsession with being in a relationship. It becomes a fantasy world. They aren't dating and they say that they want to "wait," yet many many comments out of their mouths is about some hot guy or a girl they're trying to set up with a cute guy they know. But "I'M WAITING", they say!
 
The struggle is in the mind. I know from experience. You can not do a lot, but your mind can take you where your body would love to be. One has to be careful. It's not just for guys... girls deal with that too.
 
To finish up, she then said, "If I’d learned that it’s not bad to pray for a husband, but that my greater prayer should be for Him to spend my life as He chooses for His glory. If we as believers make that our message, things could be drastically different for a lot of girls wondering why the God they think they learned to follow doesn’t compute. It doesn’t necessarily stop the desire for a husband or end all feelings of loneliness, but it does show a God who provides, loves and gives infinite purpose even to our singleness rather than a God who categorically denies some who pray for husbands while seemingly giving freely to others."
 
So, though her title seems brash and honestly, her story quite the opposite of mine, it got me thinking. I still support "waiting." With all of my heart! It's the reason mine and Josh's story is the way it is. But I guess I saw for the first time that waiting is not what we live for. And, it's not a bribe with God.
 
God's love is enough. Just His love. And it's not a "just"... it's everything!