Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Fear God, by Heidi Avery

The cool of Fall is in the air. It’s time to retire our flip-flops or expire them as often is the case; which also means new Fall footwear for at least 3 pairs of growing feet in our family. So, on this particular Sunday afternoon we head straight for a popular shoe store in town.

After many selections and fittings the kids make their choices. Hannah with her glittered up, multi-colored slip-on tennis shoes, Robbie with his light-up green LuminaTors (pictured above) and Isabelle with her dark pink fuzzy boots.

While my husband pays I peruse the socks until… I hear my say-what’s-on-your-mind-son ask Mr. Shoe-man behind the counter a question… “Sir, excuse me… do you believe in God?” Suddenly, I’m not interested in socks anymore, but I wait. Seconds drag by… at least 10 of the longest seconds I’ve ever experienced before I hear the man respond… “um, yeah I do, but… you need to be very careful asking questions like that.” Mr. Shoe-man is visibly uncomfortable and my darling boy is just smiling ear-to-ear… unaffected by the entire exchange.

I want to be mad. Really. But, this is the way it is… even God loving people are scared. Mr. Shoe-man likely has some work policy about discussing “religion” on the job and didn’t realize that those policies do not extend to fearless little God lovers like my sweet 6 year old son!

Isn't it wonderful how children just move about the country doing and saying whatever they think of. They do not get embarrassed. They are not afraid of rejection. They are not worried about what other people think of them. And, they are bold. I wish I could capture that courage combo in bottle!

The problem is we enjoy present comforts and we don’t particularly enjoy feeling judged or cast off. It hurts and our flesh takes us into auto-protect mode. Regardless of our feelings and our fears God calls us to be audacious… to risk it all for Him. Kingdom work is not easy. It’s not for the faint of heart. There is much earthy risk involved, but our blessings are eternal.

Jesus says something that puts all this trepidation to shame….

“Dear friends, don’t be afraid of those who want to kill your body; they cannot do any more to you after that. But I’ll tell you whom to fear. Fear God, who has the power to kill you and then throw you into hell. Yes, he’s the one to fear. Luke 12:4-5

Now, that’s something to be afraid of. Don’t you agree?

Father, do a great work in me. Replace my worldly fear with godly fear. I want to scream from the roof tops “Here I am, I will go for you, send me!” Whatever it costs me. I trust you Lord and I want what you’ve promised me more than I want to feel secure in this place that is not my home. Jesus, I love you… make me courageous like a child for you. Oh, and… ditto for Mr. Shoe-man too.

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