His desire is to reveal and heal those lies in each of us in order that we may run in His absolute freedom. Oh, I praise Him for freedom! Those lies hold us back, entangling our stride, and although we may still be walking Christians, moving forward as I was on the path that night by the ice rink, we’re called to run.
Going back to being real with screeching, full of horsepower cars, ice skating rinks, and a young, twenty something college coed who was afraid to run in the face of danger. Indeed, you heard it. I was afraid to run even though a car was barreling down upon me as though human flesh was the aim of it’s target practice.
Why? Why was I afraid to run? Plain and simple, it was fear that trumped wisdom in this situation. FEAR! It was a fear of how silly I’d look if I was wrong that fear put me in the path of danger.
I shiver just typing that, and I praise God as I think of the healing He has performed in this area since then, especially in the past three years. Mmm mmmm good!
Being afraid to “run” forward or even move in a different direction because of fearing how we’ll look in the eyes of others is not God. It is simply Satan tempting us toward his killing, stealing, and destroying fields. It’s bondage sure as the day is bright, entangling us in the race set before us. Its close ties to perfectionism and a fear of failure are certain, or at least strongly suspected in my eyes. Fear stops or delays us from the future God has for us. If you’re afraid to step out due to the thought “But what will others think?” take heed.
Although my legs were moving forward at a casual walking pace, my mind was racing, wondering how stupid I would look running. After all, fear screamed that it might just be my imagination, that maybe this vehicle really wasn’t heading toward the sidewalk. Perhaps it was simply a poor situational size-up.
“You’ll look stupid if you run!” it screamed.
Doesn’t it always?
Fear’s rationalizations weren’t the truth, they were confusion putting me in the way of danger. Even though I was physically walking, spiritually it was as though I were bound, going nowhere. The car was headed for me, and I certainly wouldn’t have looked silly or stupid had I jumped out of the way. At that moment, at the craftiness of fear, I found myself in the cross-hairs of sin in more than one way; in my own mind as well as right there on that sidewalk.
The end result of my fear-filled encounter with the car was a bruise on my upper inner thigh. The car veered close enough for a young man’s hand to slap my leg, leaving a hand-shaped bruise for three weeks, maybe a bit more. Although shaken and crying, I was fortunate. It could have been far worse.
Physical healing ensued, and spiritual healing was on the horizon. I would love to say that “horizon” was a few days away, but we’ll need to fast forward a few years, like twenty, to arrive. 🙂 (Boy, am I really glad He doesn’t leave us nor forsake us!) That’s the time in life where God started to unfold the truth to this lie of being concerned how “I” look. Don’t you love it when He unfolds the truth and brings healing?
Sunday school, church, and maybe even Vacation Bible School (VBS) can set a wonderful atmosphere for learning His truth, but sometimes it takes the quiet of a one-on-one with God to come to the depth of realization and healing.
The truth revealed that it all boiled down to works. Yes, you read it: WORKS! I was afraid to run simply because it might make me look foolish if I were wrong. If I were wrong, it meant I didn’t measure up and somehow fell short of being good enough.
Once the head knowledge of these truths shifts to heart knowledge…a type of “knowing” that can only come from the Holy Spirit in His counseling session…
We are changed.
A weight is lifted.
And we run.
With a new fervor.
The shackles are loosed.
The entanglements thrown to the side.
God is declared glorious.
We run in the path set out for us with a freedom that wasn’t evident the day before. We’re free!
We cease with the works, knowing that even at our worst, at that moment of salvation, we were already accepted, filth and all.
Whenever the lies try to creep back in, as they sometimes do, we hit them with the TRUTH.
And we continue to run, never quitting.