Ever seen Shaggy and Scooby-doo shaking in their boots? They've been my least favorite of the gang for a while now (and I've been watching Scooby-doo for as long as I can remember). I guess I named them the cowards of the group. But yesterday while watching one of their cartoon movies something clicked. These guys are always scared out of their minds. Yet they're back everytime facing the monsters. I call it courage. What about me? What about you?
I've been in a situation where while looking in the mirror, I found my lips give way to the phrase "I'm scared". A phrase I never speak. Fear is the opposite of faith so fear has no place near me. Right? But where did those words come from?
It isn't as terrifying as the fear the main protagonist of a horror movie feels when she realizes the bad guy is upon her. It's nothing compared to the fear that patient feels when the doctor announces the bad news. It's no where near the heart-wrenching fear someone might feel when they don't know where the next meal will come from. Certainly not the kind of fear .....(if you've ever been afraid, you can fill in the blank).
But I guess it's fear all the same. The silly no-basis kind of fear I ignore but that reminds me it's there. What am I afraid of?
I'm afraid to pick up that law school book...what if I don't get a thing? What if I don't have enough time?
I'm afraid to apply for that job...The thought of another job interview freaks me out.
I'm afraid to write in my journal...my deep thoughts in black and white unable to be ignored bothers me.
I'm afraid to get my first finished novel critiqued...what if it's worse than I thought?
I'm afraid of time itself...what if it flies by and I still haven't done all I want to do?
I'm afraid of being too busy and missing out on what matters to me.
I'm afraid to get a spanish language partner...what if my spanish is now so rusty?
But you know what?
No matter how the different thoughts "scare" me, I'll keep reminding myself that fear has no place in me...especially the silly type. The silly type is as dangerous as the others. Why? Because although it's so little that we ignore it, it unconsciously holds us back.
So, I'll pick up that law school book (like I always do), keep applying for jobs, keep writing in my journal (consistently this time), work on getting my novel critiqued, do what I can and learn to breathe and so on and so forth.
Michael Hyatt said it like this in his blog post, "Courage is not the absence of fear. Courage is the willingness to act in spite of your fear"
As a believer, I like to think I am never afraid, not even of the silly stuff. I quickly shake the thought out of my head. But if we weren't prone to fear God wouldn't need to remind us so often to "fear not" through scriptures. Fear might be there at first but do we let faith chase it out? Remember, faith without works (or faith that does nothing) is dead (James 2:17). Act in faith and "do", in so doing, you'll watch fear lose its grip.
It's one of those "a day at a time" things. It might just end up being "a month at a time". And come December 2013, you'll look back knowing God gave you the courage for 2013 and you didn't let that courage go to waste.
There are so many things I did in 2012 that I would never have thought me capable of doing. But letting God take over and just "doing" as he would have me do made me courageous. I love that word.
So, shout out to Shaggy and Scooby-doo for the monsters they faced and those they will still go back to face!
And well...shout out to you too and to me for the courage we display every day!
"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:9).