Wednesday, August 1, 2012

One Way He Never Speaks

The path to our new house has been wrought with issues stacked on problems propped against inconveniences. From the beginning, the transition has been neither smooth or straight-forward. It's been sloppy and sideways. It's had me saying, "I don't even give a rip." "Who cares." "So what?" "This is lame." (I regress to sixteen when backed into a corner. Keep that under your hat.)

There were days when we were told that it wasn't going to work out, we didn't meet the requirements, it wasn't meant to be.

There were days when we were told that we did meet the requirements but progress stalled so we looked at other houses in similar neighborhoods. We turned around and we almost walked away.

Still, something was there; something nudging us up closer to the edge. We felt it enough that we fought for it. Logic eluded us, yet we were convinced that this house on North 5th Street was where we were supposed to be.

That is, until roughly three days before we had to sign on the dotted line, when fear crept in like a slow-moving freight train. It hovered near the door. It tore through the walls and picked up speed. At the very last second, we almost derailed.

Strangely, it didn't feel unexpected. It felt like the tail end of many of my biggest decisions. It seems I'm a creature of habit in the ways of major life change. (Have I mentioned that I called my wedding off two weeks before?)

With one nerve-wracking report from Calvin's doctor, we had our out. We convinced ourselves that sky was earth and "Go" was open to interpretation. Lies hooked me in the gut - We'll have to move to Ohio to be closer to Calvin's doctor. What if he needs surgery? What if our bad insurance situation becomes worse? What if we were never supposed to make this move in the first place? What if all the hoops we jumped through were actually signs that we had missed? What if this is God pulling out all the stops to get our attention - Don't Do It!

The good news is, I had Cory. The bad news is, he happily pulled up his own fears like suspenders, trussing his anxiety, pressing every uncertainty against his shoulders while his feet dragged the floor.

 We waded around for a couple of days in the kind of complicated confusion that causes people to forget appointments and almost run out of gas on the interstate. We ate cereal and cold sandwiches for dinner. We were distracted and grumpy while we ran breathless and infatuated into the arms of Fear.

Isn't that one thing we secretly love about fear? That it's always right there, handing us an out when we want one?

When I was a child, someone told me that fear was a sin. I carried their words with me and felt them take root. I figured sin was sin was sin, so if I was going to be afraid to do something new and brave, I might as well take it one step further and lie about it. No, I'm not afraid. I just don't have peace about it.  Just like that, I had formed a safer reality, one that would carry me piggy-back out of every nail-biter and over every bend. I'd found the perfect scape goat.

What I know now is that fear itself isn't wrong. It's a human emotion, no one is immune. What I know even more is that God never speaks to us through fear. Fear isn't part of who He is. He wouldn't know how to spook us if He tried. He has other ways of letting us know if plans have changed or if our ears need checked. He wouldn't waste His time on What Ifs. He's smarter than a flimsy scare tactic.

He loves enticing us into the unknown, holding us steady across rugged terrain. He's got us

So maybe He's leading you somewhere new and maybe it scares the snot out of you. Maybe it requires more than anything He's ever asked before. Maybe you're feeling gutsy, maybe you know there's beauty in flinging your fears onto Him.

Say it with me, the fear isn't Him.

Let your smallness lock hands with every big thing that He is and be amazed at how it wraps all the way around. He's got you.