What is one thing you’re facing, right now, that seems scary to you? For my ten month old little girl, it’s our vacuum. Obviously, she cannot tell me that by her words. But when the vacuum gets rolled out of our closet, hysteria ensues.
I usually place her in the room next to me so that she can be distracted by toys and still see me near. But those distractions hardly ever work. She cries at the sight of the vacuum, and she does not stop until one of two things takes place. Either I put that vacuum away, or I carry her throughout this routine.
Yesterday, I was experiencing some excruciating shoulder pain which prevented me from carrying her. Thus, leaving me with the only other option: letting her cry until I was done.
As I was vacuuming, something about this painstaking event astounded me. Every single time I put her in a safe and fun-filled environment, she abandoned it to crawl toward me.
With a deep, red face and stream of tears she pushed past her fear of that big, noisy vacuum. All to be held by me. She had faith bigger than her fear. She knew I was the source of her comfort.
I admired her perseverance as I repeatedly witnessed this act. I pondered about previous circumstances in my life that were certainly scary. I often focused on my fears and the results only amplified my weaknesses. I made attempts to withdraw from it by cowering. I recall wanting to avoid it by running in another direction. What’s more, I have disregarded my faith by doubting, God, could even be near.
It is inevitable. There will be times in my life when I will face scary circumstances.
Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side… he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. Later that night, he was there alone, and the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it.- Matthew 14:22-24
Sometimes when good comes my way, my mind still perceives my surroundings as something to fear.
Shortly before dawn Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear.- Matthew 14:25-26
But I have one of two choices in which I can place my faith: Upon my physical feelings which magnifies my fears. Or upon my heart believing the One Who helps me persevere. Then with my eyes focused on Jesus, I can hold out my arms requesting Him to carry me.
But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.” “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus.- Matthew 14:27-29
Yes, fear will continue to knock- “My circumstances are bigger than me!”
But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!”- Matthew 14:30
Yes, fear will continue to mock- The voices in my mind can be noisy!
Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”- Matthew 14:31
I stopped myself to wonder, “Do I really believe that God is Who He says He is, and that He will do what He says He will do? Do I perceive my fears to be bigger? Or is my faith focused on God, Who I know is bigger?
And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”- Matthew 14:32-33
On the outside I may not appear to have it altogether. Even still when I encounter scary circumstances, my face may be deep red with streams of tears running down. But in my heart I’m choosing to believe God for His word.
I can push past my fears with perseverance. Even now, I look for God’s face. He’s my familiar, Heavenly Father. I am promised He carries me. I am promised His comfort. Through a seemingly ordinary vacuuming routine, I learned all it takes is having the faith of an infant child.
“‘Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’”- Isaiah 41:10 NASB