YOU WANT IS
ON THE OTHER
SIDE OF FEAR
Note: To my two precious daughters. This blog post is for you. May you always remember the words in this song!
God works in miraculous ways. I know that in my deepest hearts-of- hearts.
As I rush and rush to the end of the quarter, grading and caring and anticipating goodbyes...some fear seeps in. Where it's from I'm not quite sure. Old messages? Old insecurities? Old questions? Have I given all I can to those I love and cherish? I am wired to please others and so sometimes I get scared that what I have to give just isn't enough.
And then...God stops me in my tracks.
I get His messages and clarity and jaw-dropping LOVE as I read the book Jesus Calling. It's as if He knows just what I need to hear. Oh that's right, He does! (said with a smile). :)
And as if that isn't enough, this week I am on my way to work at 5:30 am, with my Christian music CD playing, and the CD skips to song #15. That's right, skips. All on its own. Somehow, I have not heard this song before.
I am sipping on an espresso, thinking about my students when a simple melody comes floating in. Amy Grant's voice singing God's message to me.
The tears start to flow. At once I am listening and crying the big ugly cry. So touched that I play the song again and wind my way to work, tears flowing. Almost unstoppable. It's hard to get my breath.
For the first time in my 38 years of teaching at this college, I find myself in my vehicle in the SCC parking lot overtaken by emotion... tears streaming down my face. My sides heaving. Every bit of makeup gone. Eyes puffy.
This may not be "the song" for everyone. I'm quite sure it isn't. But it is "my song", the song I need
to burn into my heart.
The title is....Don't Try So Hard.
It's not a new song, but it is new to me.
How does it fit with my life? How many hours do you have? I was born with a "feel the fear and do it away" kind of mentality. A "give everything a 110% effort" state of mind. I've always wanted to make people happy and been a people pleaser. That's not always the exterior people see when they see me, but it's what goes on deep inside. Inside the "she's tough and confident exterior," there is still the little girl with one hand who is scared she isn't enough.
I don't talk about her very often, but she is there.
When I gave my heart to Jesus, she started to be healed. And every year after my ninth grade year in school, His love has been the healing balm for my fears. Yet at times she peeks around the corner, that girl who tries and tries and tries again.
I'm not always sure if I keep trying and trying because it is instinctive or because my fear is that if I stop trying everything, and I mean everything, will fall apart.
When something is clearly over...I am still trying to make it work.
When all has been said and done..I am still hanging on and not giving up and trying to bring it back to life.
There's a lot to be said for perseverance and hard work, but there is also a time to give things over to God and know His reassurance and love.
Truth be told...I can't fix everything.
I can't fix most things. But God can.
I can't take away Vicky's cancer or heal Peggy Sue's heart.
I can't take away the pain my daughters have experienced from accidents that impacted their neck and brain. Their pain breaks my heart. I would take on what has happened to them in a heartbeat, but it doesn't work like that.
I can't make a church turn disgust for gays to loving kindness toward everyone.
I can't help students finish the quarter strong and complete their work. They have to do it.
I can't fix hearts that have been broken by people who should have been loving and caring and trustworthy.
I can't make aging brains young again.
I can do what God asks me to do, and do it the best I can, but somehow letting go and giving it all over to His care, is so hard for me to do.
So...I just keep trying harder, and praying more and working harder. That's how God made me, a go-getter. Yet He also asks me to stop and trust in Him and that's a lesson that is hard for me to learn.
This song speaks to the people-pleaser in me. I thought I'd share it this Sunday morning, just in case you, too, needed a reminder about God's love and grace and that He holds you in the palm of His hand.
He's got us, no matter what. No matter how big the burden or the hurt. He holds us. He loves us.
And for some of us, we need to remember that fear is what keeps us working so hard. Everything we want and need is on the other side of that fear.
He is on the other side of that fear that we are not enough.
We all have scars and hurts and broken hearts and our lives are a mess. God reminds us that we are lovely, scars and all.
For me, relaxing in His grace is my gift for today.
Don't miss this song. It is life-changing!
May we all know His peace and grace and rest in Him.
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