I am afraid of all kinds of things. I’m afraid of heights- so I don’t like most rides at amusement parks, ski lifts, or riding to the top of the arch in St. Louis; to name just a few.
I will ride in an airplane because sometimes there is no choice. I try not to think about being in a very heavy metal tube hundreds of miles above land, gliding through the clouds.
I also am afraid of water. The ocean fascinates me, and I need to see it every now and again– it calls to my soul. While it is both terrifying and majestically beautiful at the same time; I can’t take my eyes off it. I do not, however, like to walk to the end of a 2 mile pier to observe. The further out I walk; I can feel fear gripping at my heart. I took beginner swimming lessons three summers in a row when I was a kid. I couldn’t move up for fear of jumping off the diving board.
I don’t like doing ATV or jeep trails- especially through streams where you don’t know if you are going to plunge into the depths. I don’t like jumping off the side of a boat into deep dark water for ‘fun’ water sports. Yes, I am a very boring person.
I do like some things. Driving is one of my very favorite things to do. After a long, grey winter; I have to hold myself back from jumping in my bug and driving to nowhere all day long with the windows open and the wind rushing through my little car. I can’t make myself stop smiling.
I also love to read, drink iced tea, and hang out in coffee shops and write. I lose all track of time when I get settled in on my back porch to write. I also love to visit small, quaint towns and browse through the little shops. I love to go to the movies; when there is ever a good one on to watch. I love doing anything with my family.
All this to say: when my company I work with offered a cruise as a prize, you may be wondering why I worked my head off to earn it. My sweet husband, Gene, who has had to live on the safe side of life with me for over 40 years had wanted to go on a cruise for a long time. Every now and then; I buck up and make myself do something that terrifies me so Gene can have a little fun. As our ship’s walkway was being pulled up, separating us from land; I thought about running for dear life back to the safe side. Back to land, before it was too late.
I am not afraid to die. Heaven will be wonderful. I just don’t want to go through anything painful or scary on my way to the pearly gates.
As I have been making myself do things for Gene that I have been afraid of; I have been blessed by truly magical memories. As we rode along the rail of the Narrow Gauge Steam Train in Durango, Colorado and noticed that for much of the ride we were literally hanging off the side of the mountain; I also enjoyed absolutely breathtaking views that can’t be seen by car. As we floated across the Atlantic Ocean on the Navigator of the Seas, I wondering how a vessel that weighs 139,570 TONS can float. Watching the moon rise from our balcony at night and gazing out at the endless beautiful ocean– I was so thankful to see this beauty God created.
We all deal with fear. Some is made up in our head, some is real. Fear is an emotion from God to help keep us safe (from real danger- not imagined). No matter what you are facing today, or what you will face tomorrow; God will never leave you or forsake you (Deut. 31:6). He is holding on to you with His righteous right hand (Is. 41:10). You choose to trust in God (Psalm 91:2).
Psalm 56:3 says, ‘When I am afraid I will trust in God’. When we allow fear to grip our hearts and make decisions for us; we aren’t living our God given life to the fullest.
Because I trust in God, I am:
• An overcomer ~ John 16:3
• Powerful through Christ ~ Psalm 27:1
• Transformed through renewing my mind ~ Romans 12:2
• Living my life forward ~ Philippians 2:14
• Following the leading of the Holy Spirit ~ John 14:26
• Peaceful ~ Philippians 4:6-7