The other day a my husband woke up to find that the garage door had been opened all night long. We have a home that has an attached garage, so if the door from the garage to the house wasn’t locked then someone could have easily taken the opportunity to come through the opened garage door straight into the house.
I can’t even tell you the feeling of vulnerability I had the moment I found out the garage door had been open all night. At night….I don’t even like keeping my garage door open during the day, let alone at NIGHT!
Sometimes I have this nightmare where I go to lock the doors before bed and even though I lock the door it won’t stay locked or closed. This dream gives me so much anxiety and panic because for me locking the door is one step of common sense in order to bring some sort of safety to my life and home.
I have been wrestling with a lot of fear, anxiety, and just thinking through all the possibilities of what could happen, just like I did when I found out the garage door was open all night. Truth be told, as I was going through this checklist in my mind I started getting angry at the person who was responsible for leaving the door open. Of course they were upset about the whole situation, too, and it was a true mistake.
But for me, the anxiety of what could have been totally distracted me from the fact that all of those things didn’t happen.
Instead I was focusing on my fears instead of God’s grace.
How many times do we go through the checklist of what could happen throughout the day, and how many of those things are GLORIOUS, filled with LOVE, GRACE, MERCY, and JESUS?
I’m guessing not very many.
How many of those things are filled with 100% FEAR and worry about things that may NEVER happen?
I’m guessing most of our thoughts go in this direction if we are prone to worry and anxiety.
I was getting mad about the garage door that had been opened all night and over things that never happened.
What a waste of a lifetime worrying about all the tragic things that could take place.
Honestly I am tired and DONE with fear, and even the people who are feeding those fears.
In 1 John 4:18 is says that perfect love casts out fear and whoever is fearful hasn’t been perfected in love.
That is a powerful scripture, and it might even be offensive to some of us.
Just this morning during my journaling time I was handing all of my burdens over to The Lord, every little imperfection that is within me, and within those that live in my house. I had to hand it over to God, and also realize that in spite of these flaws God still loves us.
I think one of my greatest fears is disappointing God. Truly, I don’t want to waste the time He has given me, and if I am honest there are a lot of well meaning people who make me question if I am honoring God with my life.
But no one should have that much influence in my life because I am loved by God.
Just today I realized once again how I’ve allowed fear to hold me back from living the life of freedom I have in Christ all because of criticism from well meaning people, and it has been holding me back from writing and LIVING a life that IS truly honoring Him.
All this time I’ve been afraid of letting God down when I didn’t even realize that letting fear control my actions has been what’s truly been holding me back from living the life God had intended for me to live.
If we are going to live the abundant life then we need to step away from fear, and step out in faith.
Our fears are very real in our mind, and we fear these things because they could very well hurt us, or even take our very life away from us.
But I think we need to know that even if the garage door is left wide open for all the world to enter into our home, or if the doors on the bubble we’ve created don’t lock, then we are still living and walking out this life with The Lord who has a purpose and a plan for us.Faith begins when fear ends.
I think this lesson with the garage door was there to show me that I can trust God, and to let go of my false security in closed & locked doors. It was also a great reminder of His grace because I have done nothing to deserve what I have, and there really is nothing I can do to keep them. Even my choices don’t always predict the outcome of my life, even if they are good choices. That’s just the way life is.
Today is truly a new day for me, and right now I am only taking it one day at a time. But fear has been holding me back for too long, and it is something I think we need to overcome on a daily basis. I need to just keep on practicing faith.
The only way to overcome our fears is to know that we are loved by God, because perfect love truly does cast out fear.
Our next step will always be a step of faith, because after believing that we are loved by Jesus we will then need to walkout a life of faith that reflects our new belief.
The other day we had a handyman come out and paint our front door. When he was done painting the door he placed the deadbolt back on the door, but he put it on backwards. So now when I look at the door it looks unlocked when it’s actually locked, and locked when it’s actually unlocked.
This is really putting the entire family, including the kids, into a state of confusion! For 13 years all we had to do was look at the deadbolt and we knew whether or not it was locked or unlocked.
But now I look at my locked deadbolt and immediately think it’s unlocked because that’s just what I’ve been used to. I think God is truly trying to whisper to my heart to just trust Him. When I look at my front door and feel that vulnerability of thinking it’s unlocked and anyone can walk through that front door, God is saying to trust Him.
I will say trusting God does not come naturally for me. Not in anything, especially where fear has been my initial reaction for so many years. It’s like I’ll look at certain circumstances, cultures, places, or even relationships and automatically default to fear. So changing my default to trusting God is about as awkward as getting used to a deadbolt that had been put on the door the wrong way after you’ve been used to it going a different way for SO MANY years.
My kids keep telling me the deadbolt on the door is wrong, and I asked them what if the people who built our house put the deadbolt on the wrong way and now it’s on the right way? What if for the 13 years we’ve lived in this house the deadbolt had been on backwards all this time?
Maybe we need to ask ourselves that same question when it comes to our fears. What if fear is backwards? What if fear is the lie, and faith is the TRUTH!