Last night my husband and I led worship at an Aglow meeting here in our city. I hadn’t led worship since being pregnant with Caleb, and that was early in my pregnancy before it got too difficult. The whole experience showed me that my worship leading has nothing to do with me. I was so out of practice and my voice not used to singing that much, yet the Lord showed up and His presence was there. My prayer going into it was that in my weakness His strength would be made perfect, and it certainly was. I had thrown my neck out badly yesterday morning, and between all the prayers I received throughout the day, a visit to my chiropractor, and the prayer warrior women laying hands on me in the pre-service prayer time, I was back to nearly full mobility.
The speaker was a powerhouse woman. She came in absolutely humility, telling of her beginning steps as a young mom just desiring to be a “radical Christian”. As she shared her story, she also told us the things that she became aware of that were holding her back from being a “radical Christian”. Her mother in law was saved late in life and always told people about Jesus with great boldness, saying, what have I got to lose? I am spending eternity with Jesus, and if you don’t receive his love you will spend eternity in separation from God.
Her message to us was:
What have you got to lose?
What are you afraid of that stops you from being a radical Christian?
We took time to pray about it, and the Lord showed me the answer to those two questions. He showed me that what I have to lose are friends, popularity, and “respectability”.
He showed me I have a fear of failure and a fear of my immediate and extended family. It’s a cycle for me. I want to step out or being who I am fully created to be, and then I get afraid that I’ll fail, and that if I fail my family will say they aren’t surprised, or question why I tried to be different anyway.
These things aren’t true about my family. I have loving and supportive family members on my side, and my husband’s side, and of course an incredibly supportive, empowering and loving husband.
After we identified our fears, the speaker said that what we fear, if it holds us back, is what we are actually worshiping. So if I fear failure and it stops me, than I worship not failing more that I worship God. If my fear of what my family members will think of me stops me from pursuing God with every ounce of my being, then I’m worshiping my desire for my family to affirm me, more that I am worshipping God.
Here is an example. On this past Sunday I was having an extremely emotional morning. I was feeling terrible about myself, how I look, myself as a wife and as a mom. I ended up stomping around getting ready for church, and burst into tears the moment we got in the car. Here was my fear: I had messed up this morning and now all I wanted to do was worship Jesus and receive healing and peace, however my husband knew who I really was, so how could I worship in front of him.
Ok, so obviously that is a lie. I know. And I am glad the Lord gave me courage to tell Andrew how I felt on the way to church. He told me that he didn’t judge me and that what I needed most was freedom to worship, and he extended that to me.
This is still the morning after this revelation, so I’m still not sure what it entirely means for my life. I know the Lord has asked me to be a voice, and I’ll be honest, I am scared of what he is going to ask me to speak out. I don’t want to humble myself by sharing my insecurities, my struggles as a wife, my fears as a mom or my failings as a child of God. I want to only say things that will make me look good. However, I know the Lord is preparing me to shout out messages that might be difficult for me, and that will require courage and boldness, and might make my friends, family, and even ME a little uncomfortable. They required me to look my fears in the face and ask the Holy Spirit to blast them to pieces with his truth.
Jesus, help me face my fears today, worship you above all of them and become a RADICAL lover of you.
What’s holding you back? What are you afraid of?