When You’re Afraid to Try
There was a long period of time in my life when I did nothing. Well, that’s not entirely true. I was busy and my days were filled with plenty of “things” to do, but I had a sense of discontentment in my soul. I was doing things, but it felt like I was wasting my life away because the things I was doing were not in me to do.
God put something in my heart to do—a calling, an assignment, an invitation to partner and co-labor with Him, His dream for me—and I let so many things hold me back. Fear of failure was the number one thing.
You have one life to live, and only you get to live it.
I remember when the Lord spoke to my heart and woke me up to my life. He said, “You have one life to live, and you’re the only one who gets to live it.”
I realized I was waiting on God to do something. I believed if He wanted me to do it, He would make it happen. He is in control anyway, isn’t He? Well, the answer to that question is yes and no.
Be an Active Participant & Not a Passive Observer of Your Life
Either we lean more towards an internal locus of control, where we believe we can influence the outcomes in our lives, or we lean towards an external locus of control where we blame outside forces, including God, for pretty much everything.
Our locus of control also determines how active or how passive we are in our life. Do you just let your life lead you or do you lead your life?
God has called us to lead our lives as we follow Him. Be an active participant and not a passive observer of your life.
As Christians, sometimes we think we are not in control of anything, because God is in control of everything. But that is actually false. We need knowledge and wisdom to discern what is in our control and what is not.
Sometimes this idea keeps us from taking forward steps because we don’t know the difference between God asking us to wait on Him and Him waiting on us. I wasted a whole lot of time waiting on God, when He was actually waiting on me.
God is sovereign, and that’s true, but in His sovereignty He decided to give us a free will which means we get more autonomy than we probably realize. Not only did He give us a free will, but 2 Peter 1:3 teaches us He gave us everything we need to lead the life He called us to. “His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us to His own glory and excellence.”
Use What Is In Your Hands
I often think of it like this. Imagine you bought a child whom you love and know to be a budding artist, a paint set. You were so excited to give that child the gift. It included everything he or she needed to paint a picture—plenty of paper, paint, and brushes. You gave it to the child, and waited with anticipation for the beautiful picture they would create. Even more so, you couldn’t wait to see the young artist shine.
But after some time passed, you see the child doing nothing with the paint set in their hands. When you ask them why, they say, “I didn’t know what kind of picture you wanted me to paint, and I was afraid to mess it up.”
Often times that is how it is with God. He’s given us everything we need, but we are afraid to take steps forward because we think we might disappoint Him if we mess up trying. But just like you waiting for the child, Father God is waiting for you to do something with what you’ve been given. He’s not waiting as a stern and strict father watching for you to mess up so He can correct you. He’s watching patiently and lovingly, because He cannot wait to see what you will create.
I believe God, as a good Father, is saying to all of us;
I’ve given you a creative and intelligent mind, gifts and talents, My Word and Spirit, and My strength and grace. I can’t wait to see what you do with what I’ve given you. You don’t have to fear losing My love and acceptance if you try and fail. You don’t have to fear failure, because I can work all things for your good and My purpose. I delight in your steps. Just like a young child learning to walk for the first time, I will be there to pick you up and cheer you on every step of the way.
It’s time to take inventory of the raw material you’ve been given. Go to the drawing room, and make the God you serve come alive to others with what you create.
Journeying with you,