Thursday, January 08, 2015

Are We Ready to Be Swept Off Our Feet? (2015 redux- pt. 1of4)

Dispatching Fear
Early one morning a few months ago, I read a great blog post from prolific author, speaker and coach Michael Hyatt called 'How To Reframe Your Fear And Let It Work For You'.  First of all, if you don't know who Michael is, or don't read his posts - you're missing some caffeine for the soul.  Seriously, make the time to check in with him a few times a week online.  Michael's post was simply another quiet whisper in my ear over the past couple of months.

How many of you have experienced fear due to a relationship? . . due of finances? . . due to work? . . due to health?  Fear is a normal experience in our lives.  Some say Christians should live without fear.  If asked, each of us would certainly like to live life with less fear.  However, true faith isn’t the absence of fear but the decision to move forward in the face of it, knowing that our Father is right in front of us.  We often face fear on some level before we leap into something we perceive as significant or great.  Providing the opportunity before us is a good one, that fear we experience may be an indicator that what we've been inspired to do should be done posthaste.   

In 'How To Reframe Your Fear And Let It Work For You' Michael Hyatt offers us three steps to move through fear, "1) Notice the Feeling, 2) Objectify the Feeling and 3) Reframe the Feeling".  Good advice.  As a spiritual director and pastor, I would also encourage you to listen to what the Spirit of God might be speaking to you before, during and after moving through fear.  The prescription is the same however, God calls us to move through fear, giving us the assurance that He’s walking with us every step of the way.  

Escape to Egypt / Return to Galilee
One story that is often overshadowed during the Christmastide season is the account of the two dreams that Joseph, Jesus’ father, had during Jesus’ infancy.  Immediately following the departure of the Magi (wise men) who had traveled great distances to see the Christ child, an angel appeared to Joseph in a dream telling him, 

“Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you, for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” 

Given, Joseph’s mission to provide for and protect the Son of God from those who would do him harm, was no small feat.  Can anyone say ‘responsibility’??  Place yourself in his sandals for a minute . . an angel appears to you - in a dream - and tells you to move your young family to Egypt (the formerly-oppressive-neighbor-to-the South) in an attempt to avoid a megalomaniac king who was on a rampage to dispose of any possible threat to his self-important power grab.  A carpenter against a king.  An army against a set of wood-working tools.  And if you were Joseph you’d feel how?? Joseph might have been tempted to be afraid- except for the fact that God-of-the-Angel-Armies would not allow one hair of His Son’s head to be harmed.  So off to Egypt you go!  

While living in Egypt, the angel appeared to Joseph in a dream a second time to tell him that Herod had died and it was time to return to Israel.  The angel said,

“Rise, take the child and his mother and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the child's life are dead.”

Joseph, Mary and the infant Jesus faced another major life change requiring a copious amount of trust to overshadow any threatening fears as they returned to the country they fled.


Respond ~

Is there an area of your life in which the Father is inviting you to face fear and walk with Him through it?  (it might be in the places that you desire freedom and have seen recurring cycles.)


To Be Continued . . .

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