I live in a small town. There is always enough food. My house is warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Crime is low. I have to work to get out of my comfort zone. Yet, there is still fear. It creeps around in the dead of night and it whispers it threats. Some fears are real and some are imagined but all can cripple.
My 2016 word of the year is fearless. With fanfare I boldly stated this in January. Privately I daily choose to live this out. Sounds impressive huh? Truth be told it is not. As an average woman living in an average home it is easy to justify cowardice choices. Have you ever heard these excuses?
I’m too old.
There isn’t enough time.
There isn’t enough money.
Somebody else can do that.
I’m too tired.
That makes my uncomfortable.
I don’t want to…
And the list goes on. In the coming weeks I’m sharing part of my journey. God has showed up big time. For now my big fears have subsided. Today I share my fear of insufficient finances. A life long struggle.
Fear #1 – Money. Our middle child just completed her sophomore year at Hope College. It is an expensive school but it fits her perfectly. She is flourishing there. This past school year she worked 3 part time jobs to offset tuition cost. Each summer, she works hard at a local sandwich shop.
This year, she felt God call her to a Christian camp as a counselor. Awesome! What better way to strengthen your faith than to serve God and lead others to a closer relationship with Jesus. Um, but there is a practical problem here. The camp pays the counselors next to nothing.
Me: “How are you going to pay for school?”
Elizabeth: “Mom, you have always said, ‘If God calls you, He will provide’”
Don’t you hate it when they quote you back to you? Don’t you hate it when you know they are right but a little voice keeps nagging at you? What if I was wrong? What if God didn’t actually call her? What if she is setting herself up for big disappointment? What if and what if and what if?
She sat next to me one night with her laptop open. Pinned to the corner of her screen was this verse:
Matthew 6:34(NLT) “So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.”
“Did you know that was the verse that got me through college? I had it written on a 3x5 card on my bulletin board.” I asked
She looked slightly surprised and smiled.
Yet, I couldn’t shake this uneasy feeling. How was she going to do it? I prayed for her finances every day. When I couldn’t sleep, I told Jesus I trusted Him and asked Him to provide. I could sleep but that uneasiness lurked in our house. I would try to discuss it, she felt attacked, and she sensed my lack of faith.
Last week, I drove her 5 hours away to camp. She wasn’t sure what she was stepping into. She bravely went anyway.
On Friday, we received a letter from her college with an amended financial aid report. Elizabeth was awarded a scholarship for showing promise in her future field. A scholarship she didn’t apply for. A scholarship she didn’t know existed. God provided for my girl who was following Him.
God used this circumstance to build her faith and reinforce mine. He is so good and His timing is perfect. I am stunned by the grace He has granted us.
Each of us face a battle that is threatened by fear. I want to give a shout out to brave friends out there! We each see the courage you possess. You have:
Watched your children join the military
Put your children on a plane for mission work
Faced disease and fought against it.
Faced job loss and financial uncertainty.
Loved a wayward child.
Cared for an aging parent.
Lost a parent.
Faced the death of a spouse or child.
Chosen life after the suicide of a loved one.
More importantly God sees you and He knows what you are going through!
I have two more fears to write about and I will in the coming weeks. Meanwhile hang in there my friend. Tell those fears to hush up. Shout to your Lord that you trust Him and He will be there for you. It doesn’t always turn out the way we wish but we must remember that He is always with us. So close that He is holding each of us! Feel His presence, face your fear and BELIEVE
Isaiah 41:10 (NLT) Don’t be afraid, for I am with you.
Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you.
I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.
Share your brave moment below. I want to hear all about it. Please share this with a friend that is facing fear.