One of my favorite things about God is his amazing sense of humor. Just when you think you have been stretched he stretches you just a little bit further. As I shared in my first blog post I am passionate about pulling women out of their shells since that is what God has done to me over the years. One thing I am quickly learning is that we all have a different level of “shell” in different seasons of life. I once was at a place that the thought of introducing myself or even saying hello to a stranger made my stomach hurt. I am now past that phase of life but just when I thought I had shed all of my “shell” The Lord shows me another area he wants to pull me out in.
As I shared in this post, last summer me and some other women had the privilege of leading a summer class at our church. I am still completely humbled and grateful for the opportunities The Lord has given me to minister to women and marriages considering the kind of woman and wife I used to be. The class went so well last year that they asked us to do it again this summer. I had been praying about the class for months and was so excited until about one week ago when it hit me that I would be speaking in front of a group of women in exactly one week. I won’t lie…fear crept in. Thoughts of my past and inadequacy started to taunt me asking who I thought I was to speak to women on being a wife and what a Godly marriage looks like. Over the last week I had to make a decision everytime those thoughts came…would I give it a voice in my head or would I silence it by speaking the word of God? I felt The Lord asking me journal this last week about my fear of speaking in front of people and here are a few things he showed me:
1. CHOOSE life. Every moment of every day we are faced with the temptation to believe the lies of the enemy or silence them by speaking the word of God. It’s not a feeling but it is a decision. We must choose life through the word of God.
2. Draw near to God. Those feelings of inadequacy and nervousness are true if we are doing it in our own strength. But God loves to show off his strength in our weakness. As those feelings of fear came, I drew near to him all fear and anxiety just melted away.
3. You will never go any further in life than your fear of man will allow you. The Bible says in Matthew 6:24 “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other.” Even though this scripture is referring to the love of money I feel it can be applied here to not serving both man and God. It’s pretty simple….if we live our lives to serve man and get mans approval we will completely miss the call God has on our lives.
So here is a picture for you of me and my friend, Hannah, stepping outside of our comfort zones and speaking today:
My prayer in being vulnerable and sharing my real life, present struggles is that you will recognize that everyone deals with fear to some level. The question is what will we do with that fear when it comes? We must choose to not let fear paralyze us and just step out in faith and do whatever it is God is asking us to do. It doesn’t matter if you are speaking to a group or doing something as simple as walking over to someone who looks lonely and introducing yourself to them. Nothing is too small or too big for God so don’t ever discount what you are called to on a daily basis. You just may be the answer to someones prayer.
“If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities.” Luke 16:10
Be faithful with the baby steps and before you know it you will be walking shell free and in God’s perfect will for your life.