How do you give yourself permission to shine? That question, and its impact on my life, is something I’ve been pondering for the past few weeks. What if I offend people? What if I step out and I discover I’m completely alone? What if no one understands what I’m doing, or why I’m doing it?
What if something inside me has changed, while everything else has stayed the same?
When I think about my questions, and how paralysed I feel by my future, one word stands out in my mind. FEAR. Oh how I hate that word! Because if I truly trusted God and feared nothing, I would be stepping out and being bold and taking on the world. Only I’m not. Because I’m scared of what will happen if I do.
I read a quote recently that said the only way to minister to people in this world, is to be broken open yourself. To feel what others feel, and to empathise from a place of knowing. But the only way that can happen is if we suffer first ourselves. Like Jesus did. It terrifies me to think of what being broken open for God actually means, yet somehow that’s what I want, and more importantly, it’s what God needs in order to use me.
It is so easy to get stuck. It takes courage to put yourself out there, and risk hurt and humiliation in the process. We’ve all been hurt. But if we let that hurt define us, we will never know how God could have used it, not only to help us, but to help others.
What hopes and dreams have you abandoned because you were too afraid to pursue them? What is it you were more afraid of, success or failure? Are you limiting yourself because you doubt the power of God to do the impossible in your life?
God created good works in advance for us to do. But He also gave us a choice. Free will. We have to choose God, and that means choosing to answer His call, no matter how difficult it might seem at the time. The call on our lives will not always be easy; in fact it rarely is, because we need God’s help to achieve it. We need to be willing to do our part, and then let God do His. It’s about working together with Him.
Moving forward is scary for me, because I don’t know what it means right now. I only know that God is preparing me for more, and He will reveal it in His time. For the moment, my job is to be patient. And that is HARD!! But in giving myself permission to shine, I’m really giving God permission to take over. I choose Him. I trust in His ability to shape me into the person I’m supposed to be, and help me find my place in this world. I just pray He will give me the courage and wisdom to enjoy the journey! Shine on everyone!