There are times we’re involved in a project that consumes our spirit. We’re captivated and drawn in, led by a force much larger than our own. Depending where we’re at in life’s journey, we question whether pursuing this passion is selfish ambition…or a God-calling.
You give some thought, feed it prayer. Your internal compass and the Holy Spirit lead you to believe that yes, this IS what you were designed to do.
You’ve found your destiny! So you lace up your work boots and start the New Life trek. Like John Denver, you’re going home to a place you’ve never been before. And the journey is at first…exhilarating! Stimulating! Fourth of July mind-blowing!!!
And then…life happens.
Your car needs tires. Bronchitis puts you in bed for a few days. The boss is cranky, and your spouse is crankier.
Events conspire to undermine you. Life options contract at a dizzying rate. Crap mutates and multiplies and breeds fear. Instead of going to Disneyland, you’re in the doghouse. The dog’s growling, too.
It’s all upside down.
You fret that God sucker-punched you, because you were getting a little too big for your britches. And God, being all-wise, must know what he’s doing, right? He must be doing this to protect us. That’s the only thing that makes twisted-logic sense.
So, we accept a toxic myth. We start thinking that our Destiny Trip was a delusion, crazy brain-talk, something we’re not worthy of pursuing. We feel lashed by Original Sin; bound by a Puritan ideal that life by design has to be long and hard and unfulfilling and pious and we’ll party in heaven, but not sooner.
This paralytic, downward thought-spiral all started with fear. Fear that gripped us with the idea that God thought we were becoming a little too prideful as we, ironically, ventured closer to realizing His/Her plan for us.
But how often in the Bible are we told NOT to fear? Frequently, it turns out.
So let’s assume that our original passion is a generally-agreed upon worthy pursuit. A calling that’s constructive and life-affirming. Maybe even something that could possibly and positively shape lives for generations to come.
Now do really think God placed that fear inside you? The fear that froze you in your tracks?
Satan is a tricky bastard. He skulks around our soul-shadows, weaseling quietly in when our guard is down. And he leads us into fearfully believing that life-happenstance is God’s judgment…instead of just a little detour.
There’s no question that God puts fear in our hearts for self-preservation. It’s what keeps us from jumping off cliffs, and keeps most of us from prison time. But that’s a different kind of fear.
So consider this. When it comes to fear, shouldn’t our biggest fear be that we fall short of the destiny God has created for us? Maybe God’s biggest fear is that we hear our calling—respond–then shuffle off into forgotten anonymity.
If fear originates outside God’s realm, it can’t be worth all the power we give it.
Because love trumps hate. Light vanquishes dark. And faith slays fear, every time.