Fear Not!

Scripture

 So do not fear, for I am with you;
       do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
       I will strengthen you and help you;
       I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
 "All who rage against you
       will surely be ashamed and disgraced;
       those who oppose you
       will be as nothing and perish.
Isaiah 41:10-11 (NIV)

Observation

God has a great desire for us to reach the goals that He sets out for our lives. But we also have an adversary that would do anything to keep us from reaching those goals. It’s these obstacles that keep us from living victorious in Jesus Christ.

There are quite a number of roadblocks that keep us from achieving these goals. Scripture would suggest at least five; fear, doubt, excuses, procrastination and laziness. But since we can identify these areas in our life we can overcome them.

When we experience fear our focus shifts from Jesus. And fear comes in many different forms; failure, criticism, and rejection. When we give in to those thoughts and feelings we find ourselves in bondage. To overcome them we have to shift back to looking at Jesus.

Doubt is the lack of assurance that God can or will help us to succeed. Past failures, negative influences and even ignorance of the scriptures can lead us to this roadblock.

When was the last time you heard one of these? “I haven’t had the breaks that others have had,” “my parents didn’t teach me correctly,” or “I’m too busy.” You see, excuses make disobedience too comfortable. Consider Adam’s attempt to blame Eve for his bad decision as an example.

One of my personal favorites is procrastination, delaying an action that causes discomfort. Boy does that ever inhibit your success. Sometimes you just have to tear off the band aide in order to let the healing begin.

And finally laziness, a close cousin of procrastination; I think we can all find examples in life of how this behavior has prevented us and others from achieving God’s plan and purpose.

Application

The Proverbs tell us that wise people check their "path" to identify anything that inhibits them following Christ fully. If any of these roadblocks are impeding your success, push them aside. Find scriptures to help battle temptations. Ask God for strength so you can live freely and purposefully in the way He has planned. And personally, I like to read about Paul the Apostle. He lived his life in such confidence that if God lead him to a door, then he knew God would reduce the adversaries to a manageable size before he had to deal with them.

Prayer

All blessing, glory, and honor be unto you, Lord God of hosts. You make, break, recreate, encompass, incorporate, fulfill, and consummate all the agony of my spirit, and all its exaltation. You have to hold it all together – all the heights, all the depths – because I can’t. Amen.