April 2, 2013

{Day 2} Interrupted in My Fear

Preparations for today's interruption began yesterday, really.  I suggested to friends on Facebook that they share my page or 'like' it, so they could read along this month.

Some people did!*

Then the fear set in.

It sounded something like this: What if I don't meet their expectations?  What if I disappoint them?  What if there's a day I have nothing to write about?  What if?  What if?  What if?  WHAT IF I FAIL?

*     *     *

People, I am embarrassingly and shamefully controlled by what I think people think of me.  There.  It's out.  I write, and then wonder if someone's tearing me apart in their mind, criticizing my theology, my style, or my grammar.  But on the other side, in my faith-filled moments, I know that God is calling me to write and to speak.  I have testimonies of Him providing opportunities to speak and ways He has used this little space on the internet to hone my understanding of who God is and of who I am.

I fear.  I believe.  I fear.  I believe.  Is there a seesaw in my heart?

Is there one in yours, too?

*     *     *

As God would have it, He met me there today.  Right there in my fear.  Two interrupted by grace moments stand out.
Moment #1: My son, Brian, woke up to use the bathroom at 3am and got me.  (He does not usually do this.)  After he went back to sleep, I could not.  So up I got and when the hour came, I left my sleeping family and headed over to Starbucks, where my dear friend Emily was opening at 5, for some oatmeal, coffee, and reading.  I began a book called The Return of the Prodigal Son, by Henri Nouwen, in preparation for a potential speaking engagement, and came across this quote:
 When I hear that voice [God calling me His beloved], I know that I am home with God and have nothing to fear.  p. 39
As I read through the Prologue and first chapter of the book, it felt like Nouwen was telling my story!  We live apart from God in fear.  When He welcomes us home, fear fades as we hear His voice.

Moment #2:  Other than the occasional CD, pretty much the only thing I listen to in the car with the kids is K-LOVE.  They started a pledge drive this week and the deejays were challenging listeners to call in and make a $40/month pledge.  On the way home this afternoon, they were talking for a while about fear and how it paralyzes us.  But with God as our Father, we can be free to trust Him and step out in faith.  One of the deejays gave this acronym: False Expectations Appearing Real (F.E.A.R.)
Wow.  I live so much of my life in light of Eeyore-esque expectations, all doom and gloom.  What a terrible way for a beloved child of God to proceed through life!

Those two moments today were little whispers of assurance to me; this series is exactly what I should be doing this month.

Even if one day I have nothing to write about.

But you know what?  Knowing the God who loves me and who has so regularly interrupted me by grace in recent years puts that fearful expectation in its place, making room for the seesaw to tip back up toward "I believe."

How did God interrupt you by grace today?

*Thanks for putting my 'likes' over 70, friends!  I think that's swell.  Welcome, new readers!!

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