May 8, 2020
About Contributing Writer Chris Jackson: Chris is an insurance agency owner and an avid outdoorsman who lives in Andalusia, Alabama, with his wife Shannon. They love to road trip and chase adventures all over the country.
I am Not Afraid
I’m not sure why, but I love Star Wars! Maybe, I love Star Wars because I went to see Empire Strikes Back at 9 years old with my dad? Maybe I love Star Wars because I wanted to rescue a Princess, like Leia? Or, maybe it is because I always longed for an OB1 to tell me I was made for more and to pull me up into a larger story?
One scene in Empire Strikes Back that has always struck me is when Luke is trying to convince Yoda to train him. Luke, with a firm set jaw, tells Yoda, “I won’t fail you, I am not afraid.” Amused, Yoda wisely informs Luke, “You will be…you will be!”
Yoda knew for Luke to mature into a Jedi, he would have to experience fear.
Can I admit something? I have been afraid. I don’t want to be, but I am afraid of the unknown. I like to understand and there are things that have happened in the last few weeks that I can’t wrap my brain around, and that causes me to be afraid.
Before you start throwing Bible verses around there are some things you need to understand. First, fear is not always bad. Fear does not equal weakness. I don’t want a fearless doctor. I don’t want a fearless pilot. I want my pilot to have enough fear to go through his checklist to do everything in his control to get me safely to my destination.
Fear is the acknowledgement that I and others have value and there are some things that could potentially do harm.
Most of my fear comes from the cure more than the disease. I’m concerned about our economy and being able to provide. I have a rather large family. I have employees and clients. Will I be able to come through if they call on me? Will I have answers? Will I be able to provide?
The Real Deal
I fear financial loss and not being able to provide more than I fear death. I fear not being able to come through when called upon and not having what it takes!
Sometimes, like Luke, I pretend that I’m not afraid, because I either don’t want to be, or I feel I shouldn’t be, afraid. I feel that if I am afraid, I am less of a Christian or God is disappointed in me. But, Proverbs 9:10 tells us, the fear of God is the beginning of wisdom. Fear shows my need for God. I am a needy person. God made me that way!
God, I am afraid.
Being a child of God, I have the right to cry out to him. He is not ashamed when I cry out-no more than I am when one of my kids asks for gas money. God expects it...he desires it! He loves to meet us where we are! Try it...tell God how you feel without all the flowery words and meaningless repetitions...God, I am afraid. Then shut up and listen. Feel the love of God.
When I share my fear in vulnerability I find I am not alone. Sometimes my fear pushes me to leave what is true. I’m not God...I don’t have to have all the answers! When others look to me, I need to point them to Him! The guys at Tin Man Ministries have really helped me to understand this. (www.tinman.life) Check them out if your fear is getting the best of you.
So, I am choosing to allow my fear to expose my needs and drive me toward relationships.
I will share my feelings with those close to me. I will spend time with God and tell Him, I am afraid. I will stay connected. I will share funny memes and laugh. I will enjoy the outdoors. I will wash my hands and disinfect my office. I will have dinner on the deck with my family and watch our favorite movies. I will take a walk. I will call friends and visit my parents. I will go fishing. I will love and allow others to love me.
This fear WILL drive me toward life….and life to the FULL!