Tag Archive | Overcoming Fear

Be Afraid and do it Anyway

Overcoming Fear

For the last couple of years I have had recurring dreams of the same person. The dreams themselves are different every time, it’s just that this particular person happens to show up in them from time to time. It is someone I do not know in my waking life and usually when I dream of him, he has an important message to share with me or to help me understand something. I’ve come to refer to him as my “teacher” because that is the role that I most often relate to him in these dreams.

A few weeks ago I had a dream where he came to me and told me that God had a specific task for me to complete and that I was hesitating to do it. As if that wasn’t convicting enough he said, “You move in fear instead of love.” Ouch! I could not refute his claims. How often have we let fear be a motivating factor in how we act (or in what we avoid) rather than love?

I knew exactly what he was referring to. If you’ve read any of the Being Rahab series, you know that I am in contact with a woman who lives on the other side of the globe from me. Recently, she had some questions that she only felt comfortable talking to me about. She suggested doing a video chat. This is a simple solution to the problem of living so far apart and not being able to meet in person. A phone call isn’t ideal because there is a bit of a language barrier between us so we often need the help of facial expressions and hand gestures to communicate. Video was the best alternative. For me however, this was a terrifying request. The thought of being on the internet like that nearly sent me into a full blown panic. Just the thought of doing it, never mind actually going through with it.

This may come as a surprise to many of our readers since you know that I have been putting my posts on the internet for at least two years now. There is a big difference between putting words on a screen and putting your face out there. Where I could be seen. And heard. Even recognized. Or recorded. Especially recorded. You’ve never seen my face on this blog and I don’t even use my real name so making the shift to a video chat was a giant leap for me. Giant. Did I think my friend was planning to record me? No. Or worse, planning to distribute the video out into the world? Of course not. But I am paranoid and I don’t trust technology and frankly the whole idea is horrifying to me.

This paranoia is not completely without justification. I know what it is like to be involuntarily recorded. I know what it feels like to not have any control over that and to not be able to retrieve the recordings. I know the haunting fear that one day those recordings will resurface. I never want to be in that situation again so I have spent years avoiding technology that might take pictures or videos and transmit them somewhere.

But then there’s this woman half a world away. She has questions about the Lord and the church and salvation. She has past issues she needs help working through. She has fears and she needs someone to reassure her that the Lord is her shield and buckler. She needs someone to confirm that Jesus is a healer. And she wants to talk to me. Only to me.

I wanted so much to help her, but I honestly didn’t think I could get over my debilitating fear in order to do it. How could I possibly allow myself to be seen on video? The thought was unbearable.

But then I had a dream. My “teacher” came and told me that I needed to demonstrate my burden. He invited me to demonstrate my love for the Lord and for the souls I cry out for.

He asked me, “Do you love Him enough to leave your fear behind?” I could not answer the question. So he told me that God would be with me and that my calling required a giving up of self and a constant overcoming of fear.

He asked me again, “Do you love Him enough to put your own fear aside?”

Again, I could not answer him.

“Do you love Him?”

I answered with a resounding, “Yes!”

He said, “If you love Him, but cannot put your fear aside, then be afraid and do it anyway.

With that, he walked away and the dream ended. When I woke up, I knew I had to do the video chat. I didn’t know how I was going to do it, but I knew that I could. Despite my fear, I had to move in love. I had to reach out to a woman thousands of miles away in a way that was utterly terrifying to me because it was what she needed. I had to put myself aside. I had to be afraid and do it anyway.

And you know what? I did it. Through the Lord, by the Lord, with the Lord, He helped me do it. It was not easy. It took a lot of prayer. I admit I cried and threw up before the video chat started. But when the switch was flipped and there she was on a screen across from me, Jesus helped me to move in love instead of fear. As far as I know, she had no knowledge of how difficult it was for me. And God accomplished something amazing in that conversation. Two women a world apart and He helped us both overcome that day!

I often think that God has to remove a fear before I can be free to act, but I have learned through this situation that sometimes God moves in the fear. He doesn’t always take the fear away first. You have to be willing to say that your love for Him and your love for souls is more important than the fear you are feeling.

When I feel God leading me to do something that feels scary, I have a new motto: Be afraid and do it anyway.

Dear Readers: May the Lord help you to walk in love instead of fear. May you never shy away from His bidding because of fear. May you overcome by facing that fear and doing the very thing that you are afraid of.

In His Love,

Rebekah L.

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Rooted and Grounded in Love

Love Letter

“Christ will make His home in your hearts as you trust in Him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep His love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to fully understand. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.” –Ephesians 3:17-19

This verse is one of many in the Bible that speaks of God’s incomprehensible love for us. I don’t think we can ever truly grasp that love. It is the love of one who laid down His life on the cross for the sins of all people. He laid down His life for me. Unworthy, undeserving me. And He laid down His life for you.

I have struggled all my life to believe that someone could actually love me. Me of all people, but this verse clearly says that God loves me and that I should strive to understand just how wide and deep that love is. It also says that as I trust in Him, my roots should grow down into that love. Being rooted and grounded in love should give us such a confidence in God that nothing can penetrate it. The Bible says that perfect love casts out fear (1 John 4:18). As we allow these roots to grow in His love, it keeps us strong!

A few years ago sitting in a meeting with my former pastor and his wife, a finger was pointed at me and I was told matter-of-factly, “No one will ever love you.” I have mentioned this incident once before on this blog and to a few select people in my life. I’ve yet to completely free myself from these words because they were the vocalization of something I already believed about myself.

But recently in prayer God gave me a revelation: the Bible says in the mouth of two or three witnesses let every word be established (2 Corinthians 13:1). This word that no one will ever love me has never been corroborated. There has never been another witness to tell me this. In fact, of the few people that know about this incident, the reaction has almost universally been horror that someone would say this to me and everyone I’ve told has disagreed with it. More importantly, the Word of God establishes over and over again that I am loved. He loves me. If no one else on this earth ever has affection for me it does not matter because the God who created the universe, the Savior of the world, the Redeemer of my soul loves me!

Why then do I struggle to accept this love? I believe the Word of God. I know His Word is true. I know that it was the love of God that saved me. He loved me enough to pluck me out of the miry clay. He has blessed me beyond anything I deserve or could ask for. But part of me still believes I am fundamentally unlovable. This mind-set is keeping me from experiencing the love of God as it truly is and it is hindering my walk with Him. I think the solution to this problem lies in the verse I posted above from Ephesians 3. Lord help me to trust completely in You! I need to be rooted and grounded in the love of Christ! I need a revelation of how wide, how long, how high, and how deep His love is.

If I cannot accept the love of Jesus, how can I ever hope to accept the love of a fallible human being? There are people in my life who tell me they love me, but I have trouble believing them. I know they mean it when they say it, but I don’t know if their love is real so I test it over and over again. Often the result of this testing is to push them further away from me. I do this with God too. His love can withstand the testing, but can it withstand my lack of trust? God’s love is perfect and I need to be perfected in it. I’m not there yet. But I know that God is working on me. He is helping me. This revelation about getting two or three witness is huge. Now whenever that nasty memory comes to mind, I can counteract it with the truth of the Word. My strength lies in Him! When the enemy tries to tell me I cannot be loved, I will say “It is written”.grounded in love

Have you ever struggled to believe something in the Word?

In His Love,

Rebekah L.