I have spent the last couple of weeks fretting over this or that. I have had an overwhelming lost feeling and feeling like I am not only letting myself down but God and all those who I care about. Feeling a certain level of fear, I suppose. Fearful that no matter what I do it is never enough and it is not getting me to where I want to go.
Fear deadens God’s voice.
It seems that the place I envision in my head is only a distant wish or longing that I will never arrive. Yet, I bounce around trying to figure out which step to climb or which path to take or whether it is time to stand still or take off running. Funny thing is, fear clouds it all. Fear deadens God’s voice. We hide from Him, well we think we are hidden from Him because we are afraid of what He might say. Sometimes we even blame others around us for the reason we are running away or dealing with an unwanted fear.
I think of how Adam and Eve hid from God after they had eaten from the tree God had forbidden them to eat. If you aren’t familiar with this account, you can read about it in Genesis 3. I recently read this chapter during my morning a devotion and these verses stood out to me were verses 8 through 13. This is after they willingly disobeyed God.
And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden. And the LORD God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou? And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself. And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat? And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat. And the LORD God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.
(Genesis 3:8-13 KJV)
I want to point out a few specific things from those verses. First, is the question that God asked Adam, “Where art thou?” He didn’t ask that because He didn’t know where Adam was. He asked because He wanted Adam to acknowledge and admit where He was. It was God’s way of getting Adam’s attention.
Adam answered God, “I heard you and was afraid, because I was naked, I hid myself.” God then asked, “Who told you were naked?” God already knew who told Him, but once again He wanted Adam to admit and acknowledge the issue. It’s clear that God knew because He followed the naked question by asking Adam if he had eaten from the tree that he was told not to.
What’s even funnier is Adam immediately blamed God and Eve for what he did, “THAT WOMEN that YOU gave me, made me do it.” I don’t know why but I imagine a bit of a don’t blame me tone. I know you know what I mean!
God then questioned the woman “What did you do?” She then blamed the serpent for “tricking” her. Now to focus in a little more specifically on the part “and I was afraid”. Why was Adam afraid? I mean, he had the perfect life, the perfect wife, no labor or toil, and could enjoy whatever was in the garden that God gave him.
Well, except that one tree that God said not to eat. He had it all. As soon as he chose to eat of what was forbidden, he immediately felt fear. He was afraid because he disobeyed God. I believe that there was no such thing as fear until the fall of man. Fear is a consequence of sin. It is not an emotion created by God or intended to be in our minds.
2 Timothy 1:7 (KJV) For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
Fear is from the devil himself. He knows if we are afraid, we are less likely to hear God’s voice when He is calling us. The devil works in all different angles to place fear in our minds. To be honest with you, many times he doesn’t have to work that hard to get in our heads because we continue to depend on what we can do instead of what God can do.
Sort of like Adam and Eve when they believed what the devil said when he told them that God was lying about what the forbidden fruit would do, not trusting what God had said. Sound familiar?
If God tells us to do it, then He has it all figured out.
How often have we been given direction by God, but we decide what He said is too hard, too scary, requires too much change, too far, doesn’t make sense, we aren’t capable of that, we don’t believe Him, or simply we don’t want to? If God tells us to do it, then He has it all figured out. There is nothing to fear, we just have to DO IT. How awesome is that we can be completely fearless because God is the one in control?
When our confidence is set on Him, we don’t need to fret over anything. It is as simple as that, but we love to complicate it. The disciples even questioned Jesus when He told them “let’s go to the other side”. He fell asleep while in the boat then a storm came. The disciples woke Him up whining, “Do you not care that we might die from this storm?” He asked them how is it that they have no faith. (Mark 4: 35-40) If He said it, He will get your there.
We may get tripped up because we step where we aren’t supposed to. However, even when we step wrong, He is still there. He calls out to us “Where are you?” He wants us to reach out to Him. He is always ready to lead us and get us out of the mess we are in.
He never leaves us alone trying to figure it out for ourselves.
He did this in the BIGGEST way possible when He sent His only Son to rectify the sins of man, to fix what man messed up. He never leaves us alone trying to figure it out for ourselves. We are the ones that hide from Him. If we want the fearlessness that only He can provide then it is time we ask Him for it. It’s time for us to step out in faith and lay down fear. He called us for a purpose, it’s time for us to follow His lead and believe that He will get us there!