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Faith Imagined: Internet Cafe: The Good Fear

Faith Imagined

Alisa Hope Wagner: Christian Writer

August 5, 2010

Internet Cafe: The Good Fear


My oldest son has taken swim lessons since he was six months old. Every summer we pour energy, money and time into getting him acquainted with the water and comfortable swimming. By the end of each summer, he is able to confidently move through the water like a fish!

However, through the winter months, his water skills take a back seat and he loses his swimming confidence. When summer comes round again, he believes he can’t swim and is burdened by an unfounded fear.

Once again, I enrolled my son in swimming lessons, and the teacher assessed him in the water. He was nervous and wouldn’t let go of the side. She said that he would have to go with the beginners who were several years younger than he.

I was discouraged because I know he could do better. I see his fear and try to explain to him that he is an amazing swimmer….he just forgot! He won’t listen to me, though. His fear dictates his actions and drives his mother crazy!

During the first swim lesson, my son regained his confidence; and by the second swim lesson, the teacher had to move him to the next class. He was far more advanced than she had anticipated. When he finally let go of his fear, he was able to demonstrate his real ability.

Oh! But don’t we do that too as God’s children?!

God is constantly working in us to prepare us for the challenges ahead. He knows who we are deep in our spirits, and He knows that we can do His will. But many times our fears stop us from shining His glory! I can go through all the reasons and excuses of our fears, but I’ll just touch on the deepest root: We have lost our fear (reverence, honor, awe) of God, and that fear has been transmitted to the world.

If the Creator of life, the God of everything living, and the King of all the breathes says that we can do it, what right do we have to yell back, “No, we can’t”? Are we going to bow down to the fear of God or the fear of the world?

If God says you can do it…YOU CAN!

I want to be an excellent wife – YOU CAN!

I want to raise godly children – YOU CAN!

I want to serve with a heart of joy – YOU CAN!

I want to accomplish the impossible – YOU CAN!

I want to be a shining woman of faith – YOU CAN!

You can swim in this crazy ocean of faith. God has given you the tools, and He is slowly honing your talent during the seemingly meaningless tasks that you do every day. He is doing a good work in you. He knows when you are ready to swim; so when you hear Him calling you out, don’t think about it, don’t analyze it, don’t worry about it and don’t fear it. Just tell yourself, “I can!”

If you have submitted to His authority and have been faithful in the small things of your daily life, you will find victory. And when you finally start swimming, you’ll realize that you had more ability than you anticipated. God will have to pile on more anointing just to keep up with your skills. Take off the weight of fear, and you’ll rise to the top!

Questions:

What fears have prevented you from achieving God’s best for your life?

What would happen if you replaced the fear of the world with the Fear of the Lord (the basis of all wisdom)?

Would you make a commitment starting today that you would fear the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords, the only name deserving of your fear?

You can also read this devotional over at the Internet Cafe!

You can also read my interview at Robin's Nest!

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20 Comments:

Blogger Tammi said...

Oh boy! This was good, Alisa! Thanks so much! God is pointing me in a new direction, one that causes "Craven Fear" to lurk in the distance. But GOD! It will help to remember, "I can do ALL things through Christ, who strengthens me." It is by relying on Christ, and His almighty power, that we can do anything He asks us to, even if it means "diving in the deep end!" Thanks!

7:38 AM  
Blogger Daughter of the KING said...

Good reminder... I can't but He can so therefore in Him I CAN! Yes, even release this fear of failure...

Blessings,
Linda J

8:01 AM  
Blogger Beth.. One Blessed Nana said...

oh, sister. you said it! we have indeed lost our fear - our reverence - of God. sad, but oh so true.

this really pricked my heart today.

8:14 AM  
Blogger Debbie said...

Absolutely. Fear and worry will hold us back every time.

8:16 AM  
Blogger MTJ said...

Hi Alisa,

Good post which speaks to my heart on the need to trust in the Lord and not my fears.

The question you ask, " Are we going to bow down to the fear of God or the fear of the world?" -- Speaks to a decision point in my life which I reach each time my trust in God is challenged by my own fears.

Thanks for sharing an example for all of us.

Blessings to you today.

MTJ

8:17 AM  
Blogger Karen Lange said...

What an excellent example of how we can be sometimes. Glad your son overcame his fear and moved ahead. Soon he'll be ready each new swim season.
Have a wonderful weekend,
Karen

4:15 PM  
Blogger Lynda Young said...

fantastic analogy! Great post!

Blessings,
Lyn

6:23 PM  
Blogger Leah @ Point Ministries said...

Great post! So glad that He knows me better than I know myself. His plans for me always include a stretching of what I think I can do.

Leah

6:53 PM  
Blogger Melanie Redd said...

What a great picture of us! I like your story about your son, and I can relate.

Thanks for the reminder to courageously keep swimming in the harder classes!

Blessings,
Melanie

7:28 PM  
Blogger Nana Jul said...

What a great post! Who are we to say we can't when God says we CAN! Oh relating big time! Thanks for letting God speak through you!
Julie

7:35 PM  
Blogger Amy Sullivan said...

Alisa,
What a great comparison! Super cute picture too.

9:08 PM  
Blogger Rachel said...

I LOVE this post!! It's so good to hear/read a reminder!!

Have a great weekend!

:)
Rachel

12:06 PM  
Blogger bornagain77 said...

Though off topic, this video offering an insight into the resurrection of Jesus Christ may interest you:

The Center Of The Universe Is Life - General Relativity, Quantum Mechanics and The Shroud Of Turin - video
http://www.metacafe.com/watch/3993426/

The End Of Christianity - Finding a Good God in an Evil World - Pg.31 - William Dembski
Excerpt: "In mathematics there are two ways to go to infinity. One is to grow large without measure. The other is to form a fraction in which the denominator goes to zero. The Cross is a path of humility in which the infinite God becomes finite and then contracts to zero, only to resurrect and thereby unite a finite humanity within a newfound infinity." http://www.designinference.com/documents/2009.05.end_of_xty.pdf

Philippians 2: 5-11
Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

"Miracles do not happen in contradiction to nature, but only in contradiction to that which is known to us of nature."
St. Augustine

Intelligent Design - The Anthropic Hypothesis
http://lettherebelight-77.blogspot.com/2009/10/intelligent-design-anthropic-hypothesis_19.html

6:43 PM  
Blogger Elizabeth Mahlou said...

Great post. I wish I could answer your question, though. I cannot. I think I was born fearless. That is not always good, but it is the way it is for me. I have people who from time to time pull me back from a reckless brink, and I am sure I keep God quite busy protecting me from myself!

4:08 AM  
Blogger Connie Arnold said...

That's a wonderful post, Alisa! Watching my grandchildren at swimming lessons, they are very much like that, and I can certainly see how we all need to let go of our fear to achieve what God has in store for us.

6:59 PM  
Blogger Amrita said...

Dear Alosa, Greetings from India.
I find your blog very inspiring. I hav e become your follower. God bless you

9:59 PM  
Blogger Bernadine said...

Great post! I love the story you shared about you son.

11:18 PM  
Blogger Michael Manning said...

A timely story! Many people are mired in fear from trauma of the past. With a recognition of Christ at the core, they can step out on their faith and conquer those fears and receive a renewal of spirit. It is sad that this journey has become so hard and complicated for too many. And one person mired in complications of this type is "too many". Christ simply says "Follow me". :)

12:56 AM  
Blogger Recovering Church Lady said...

Yep, fear can be a paralyzing and awful thing. So thankful That my God will give me "swimming lessons" again and again until I get it!
Great post!

10:19 PM  
OpenID bluecottonmemory said...

I grew up in the spirit of fear - fear of doing the wrong thing, fear of being parentless, fear of things in the night. Here I was a Christian, living in fear - because I didn't know that God had tools, and angels, and the Holy Spirit to help me, to protect me. I learned if you're trusting God, then you don't fear. Someone likened it to if you fear, then you are throwing insults at God - saying He is not capable! I'm glad God is fearless and takes care of those things which attack me!

What a wonderful Tuesday morning coffee moment Alisa!

9:12 AM  

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