Post by: Katie M. Reid
My daughter and I attended a gymnastics meet at the local university. We were mesmerized as the athletes leaped over the vault, spun around the uneven bars, and soared through the air during their floor exercises.
The coach gave each gymnast a pep talk before their routine. I imagine that he reminded them to focus, breathe deep, and remember their training. They ended with a fist bump and a “You’ve got this.”
As I watched one of the athletes get ready for her event I noticed that her hands were shaking. She looked nervous and unsure of herself but she charged ahead when her time came to compete.
That’s when it hit me.
The gymnasts practice facing their fears and have learned to compete, in spite of feeling afraid.
They don’t let fear stop them from doing what they were made to do. They put in the time day after day to improve their skills but there is a still a strong element of risk, uncertainty, and fear as they approach each apparatus during a meet.
Even if they are confident in their abilities, they realize that something could go wrong, they could come up short, or their body might let them down. But they forge ahead anyway. They are committed to their goal. They are focused on what is before them and they are driven to
do their best.
How many times do I avoid something because I over-analyze the risk factors or focus on my fears?
Of course, it can be a good thing to be cautious, but an overly cautious outlook can cripple forward motion.
The heavy weights of “what ifs” are “who do you think you are?” have kept me from living free. The news, the reports, and the suffering all around threatens to paralyze purpose; to live fully for Jesus, delighting in His company and following His ways.
What if we practice facing our fears by choosing to go forward, when we are called? Ready or not we spring ahead and give it our best. We put in the time day after day and choose to listen to His instructions and flex our faith muscles.
We still might feel afraid but we decide to follow God’s Word anyway, to trust His voice, to breathe deeply and focus on what is set before us.
- Has He led you to travel to a far off place or to get to know your neighbor better?
- Has He told you to forgive a loved one once and for all or to forgive yourself?
- Has He asked you to move or to stay?
Whatever lies before us, let’s face it…knowing that we can do it because God is cheering us on as we face each challenge.
Kelly has written a passion-filled guide to help you face your fears. If you haven’t read Fear Fighting: Awakening Courage to Overcome Your Fears, pick up a copy today.
Let’s move forward, even when we feel afraid, knowing that we don’t go alone.
Katie M. Reid is an author and speaker who encourages others to find grace in the unraveling of life (look for her first book coming out next summer with Waterbrook). She inspires others to embrace their identity in Christ and live out their God-given purpose. Katie delights in her hubby, five children, and their life in ministry. She is a fan of cut-to-the-chase conversation over hot or iced tea. Katie and her husband host the popular Facebook Live show, “Stop! Hammock Time” (which airs Wednesdays, 9pm EST).