I’ll start this week’s post off with a story. Once upon time in the nation of Israel, there was a prophet named Elijah. Elijah had done great signs and wonders and spoke for God in a time and place where doing so made him a literal target. He got to a point where he became weary of serving God because of all the trials and tribulations he had to face. The straw that broke the camel’s back was when Jezebel, the evil queen, declared his death. Elijah fled for his life. He ran away and hid in a cave where he thought he’d never be found, but there’s no hiding from God.
Why did I tell that story? Other than the fact that I love that story (and you must admit, I told it pretty well), I wanted to illustrate the point that we all have fears. Elijah was afraid of death. David was afraid of being alone. Abraham was afraid of being childless, and the list goes on and on. The fears of the men and women of the bible had direct impacts on their stories and it led them to make mistakes. Elijah ran away from the purpose God had for him. David had an affair. Abraham had a baby with Hagar.
One of my greatest fears is that I will get stuck in complacency, never changing or growing. I fear that I will continue to cycle around the issues for the rest of my life. The problem with fear is when we allow it to dictate our decisions, we end up acting out of our own strength to accomplish what only God can. All Elijah really wanted was protection. Maybe He was so used to seeing God in the earthquake and wind that he forgot how gentle and kind God really is. Maybe he forgot that he and God wanted the same thing. After all, Elijah never did die, David was never alone, and Abraham got his promised son.
I don’t have to work for spiritual growth out of my own strength. God wants to see me grow, and He will lead and direct me in that way. Whatever your fears may be, submit them to Jesus and allow Him to make the decisions. Most likely, He wants what you want and He is the only one who can provide it.