Unchartered territory and uncomfortable situations is where God does His best work and where we have the possibility for the most growth.
Not only does lack of comfort and stability increase our desire to run to Him for help, it makes us want to lean on Him for a strength we realize that He has – and we don’t.
In Matthew 14, the story is told of Peter getting out of a boat and walking on water towards Jesus. Peter was good as long as he kept His eyes on Jesus, but apparently caught wind of the storm in his peripheral vision.
And as he brought the storm raging around him into focus, he started sinking.
Now Jesus did help Peter out when he cried out for assistance. Jesus didn’t let Peter drown. But I wonder, what kind of faith would Peter have built if he had kept his eyes on Jesus and been able to walk clear over to the other side? What kind of faith would those around him have built if that had been able to witness a man risk his level of comfort for the call of Christ?
Sharing my thoughts on paper for the world to read and or critique was uncomfortable. Speaking in front of a whole bunch of women was uncomfortable. Being in front of the camera was uncomfortable.
And truth be told, I still have a sense of “shaking in my boots”, every time I write, speak, or have to be in front of a camera. I’m not just saying that. That pitter-patter in my heart and the coursing of adrenaline through my veins is real!
I recall a few of those fears from last July’s video recording:
What am I going to wear? Worse yet, how will the pooch in my stomach or the size of my rear end look on the camera? You know the screen adds 10 pounds and that’s on top of the other pounds I’m trying to conceal!
How am I going to remember all that I have to say? How do I know I’m not saying too little… or more likely, saying too much?
My Christian walk is a story that is marked with chapters I’m not necessarily proud of. Will people that know me even take me seriously?
I have a “twang”. I can’t help it. I’ve lived in Texas all my life. How distracting will that be?
But at the end of the day, none of that mattered. Nothing went wrong. In those moments that I was in front of the microphone, I yielded what I had in my hand and heart to God and asked Him to use it. And I believe that He did.
I found that, once I had done my homework, spent time with God, written down the messages He gave me, marinated on them, talked to myself a few times in the mirror (yes I did do that)… that when it was time to talk on the stage, the essence of what He wanted me to say just flowed.
The experience of sharing my heart with 3,000 women at my church last July was an out of body experience. It was like walking on water. I had no choice than to depend on God to get me through because I knew and still know that without Him, I just can’t do it.
On second thought, maybe I could do it. But I know that I wouldn’t be able to do it and have the kind of impact that God’s involvement can make possible.
And that’s the only kind of impact I want to have.
How do you have a God-sized impact? God has to be involved. Simple. Piece of cake.
You have to exercise faith where He’s calling you to do so, and then walk out on water (maybe in the middle of a storm), completely dependent on Him to make the impossible possible.
Recently I read, this awesome post, by my friend Nicole Staples (who is an awesome photographer by the way). Her thoughts in this post and in this quote, some up my feelings completely:
Yup, Nicole, that’s what God does. He loves asking us to walk on water. He takes pride in calling us into unchartered territory. Sometimes, we joyfully oblige as we lunge forward in child-like faith. Then shortly thereafter, we realize that we are in new territory and that the ground that we stand on feels unsteady and quite shaky – if not torrential in nature.
And we worry. Our palms sweat and we start looking around at the scenery and forget that our eyes should be on the Savior.
And if we are not careful, we will start to sink.
I have moments where I’ve felt like I’m sinking. And I know from experience that Jesus won’t let me drown when I cry out to Him for assistance. But I wonder, what kind of faith will I build if I keep my eyes on Jesus and walk clear over to the other side? What kind of faith would those around me build up if they can witness a woman risk her level of comfort for the call of Christ?
What would kind of faith is God asking YOU to have?
Where is He calling YOU to walk on water?
I’d love to hear from you in the comments.
Like I said earlier, I’ve had a couple of days to marinate the last year of my life has been and contemplate unexpected God moments, I have a few more things to say about that, so look for another blog post soon on that topic.
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