Are you afraid?

Today at church I dropped Kara off in the nursery for the first time since she was born, and so for the first time in a long time I was able to focus completely on the message and worshipping God. It was wonderful :)

The message this morning was about how we often times live our lives in fear instead of faith. We read about the night that Jesus walked on the water, and how Peter had faith enough to step out of the boat, onto the water in the middle of a storm. (Matt 14:22-33) Because Peter had faith to take that first step out, he was able to experience something that no one else ever has. We too have to put fear aside and have faith in Jesus in order to experience real life! Our pastor today, Mike Breaux, shared some quotes that I loved from Max Lucado's book Fearless.

When fear shapes our lives, safety becomes our god.  When safety becomes out god we worship the risk free life.  Can the safety lover do anything great? Can the risk-averse accomplish noble deeds? For God? For others?  No. The fear-filled cannot love deeply.  Love is risky. The fear-filled the cannot give to the poor. Benevolence has no guarantee of return… the worship of safety emasculates greatness. No wonder Jesus wages such a war against fear.”

“Fear never wrote a symphony or poem, negotiated a peace treaty, or cured a disease. Fear never pulled a family out of poverty or a country out of bigotry.  Fear never saved a marriage or a business.  Courage did that.  Faith did that. People who refused to consult or cower to their timidities did that.  But fear itself?  Fear herds us into a prison and slams the doors.  Wouldn’t it be great to walk out?”

"When Christ is great, our fears are not. As awe of Jesus expands, fears of life diminish. A big God translates into big courage.”

We sang this song at the end of the service. It really speaks to all the things the sermon was about. I love it!

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death
Your perfect love is casting out fear
And even when I'm caught in the middle of the storms of this life
I won't turn back
I know you are near

And I will fear no evil
For my God is with me
And if my God is with me
Whom then shall I fear?
Whom then shall I fear?

Oh no, You never let go
Through the calm and through the storm
Oh no, You never let go
In every high and every low
Oh no, You never let go
Lord, You never let go of me

And I can see a light that is coming for the heart that holds on
A glorious light beyond all compare
And there will be an end to these troubles
But until that day comes
We'll live to know You here on the earth

Yes, I can see a light that is coming for the heart that holds on
And there will be an end to these troubles
But until that day comes
Still I will praise You, still I will praise You

Today's message really got me thinking about what I am afraid of, besides spiders and snakes :). What fears am I holding on to that keep me from living the life God wants me to live? Fears of failure, rejection, sacrifice... I am not sure. I do know I want to live a good story, one of faith not fear.

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