” Snakes… Why did it have to be Snakes?” — Indiana Jones from Raiders of the Lost Ark. I myself, as you probably, guessed, am afraid of snakes. This is called Ophidiophobia.
Even though a discussion over fear and phobias would be pretty interesting, this post for today with discuss Chapter 2 of Francis Chan’s Forgotten God.
For Francis Chan, his biggest fear is the fear of rejection. Many of us have the fear of what other people think of us; I know I do. I am learning though to let the Holy Spirit guide me, and to release that fear.
A lot of us may share another fear as well. The fear I am talking about is the fear of God failing us. When you pray and pray and pray, and nothing happens. As Mr. Chan states, the fear of God failing us leads us to “cover for God.” This means we ask for less, expect less, and are satisfied with less because we are afraid to ask for or expect more. But the Bible says something different.
Matthew 7:7 (NIV)
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.”
God promised to give us His Spirit if we ask for it. We have to repent and be baptized. It really is up to us to believe Him and act upon that promise.
Well friends, there is a flip side to the fear of God failing us. Francis Chan describes this fear as the fear of the “follow through/show up” God. What if God does show up and asks us to go somewhere or do something that is out of your comfort zone? Mr. Chan believes that more people have this fear than the fear of having God ignore them.
What I highlighted out of this chapter:
- p. 46 Though this fear is natural, it’s not right. We are called to pattern our lives after the Way described in the Bible. We are not called to fear what following the Way of Jesus may require of us, but that doesn’t mean those fears won’t crop up. A life of following Christ requires relinquishing those fears when they do come. It means refusing to let your fears of what others think, your fears of rejection, keep you from pursuing the truth about the Holy Spirit and whatever else God is reaching you and calling you to.
- p. 47 Open u our mind and our life to the leading of the Spirit, regardless of what others may think or assume about you.
- p. 49 Ultimately, you need to stake your faith in God alone, not in the gifts (good as they may be) that He gives.
- p. 50 The truth is that the Spirit of the living God is guaranteed to ask ou to go somewhere or do something you wouldn’t normally want or choose to do. The Spirit will lead you to the way of the cross, as He led Jesus to the cross, and that is definitely not a safe or pretty or comfortable place to be. The Holy Spirit of God will mold you into the person you were made to be.
- p. 56 We need the Spirit in order to live faithfully. Be we also need one another as we work out our faith.
Let me leave you with these closing questions:
- What are you afraid of? What fear is keeping you from connecting with the Holy Spirit and becoming closer to God?
- Do you care about what people think when they see you, or do you actually want to serve and please God in everything? Are you afraid of getting “too much” of the Holy Spirit and what that might mean for your life? Are you honestly open to being led by Him?
Until next time readers, God Bless!
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