Saturday, December 15, 2007


Have you ever been afraid?

I have.

I am.

I'm not talking about the "oh my gosh, something is out there" icy chill but sweating kind of fear. I'm talking about the low level but constant worry in my head. This fear makes me think that disaster is always just over the horizon.

Evolutionary biologists say that humans who were predisposed to worry actually had a very strong survival mechanism. They stayed alive while the care-free proto-humans set themselves on fire, fell through the ice or were eaten by sabre-toothed cats. I can't deny that worry keeps you alive, but it sure saps the joy from life.

I am at the threshold of the next phase in my career. But I'm afraid. I worry that I'm not smart enough, knowledgeable enough, strong enough, or shrewd enough. I worry that I can't do it and I'm afraid to fail. Tabitha wants me to do it and I want to do it but I keep dithering. I could not do it and stay where I'm at for the next 20 years. I won't have to face my fear but then I won't know the joy of achievement.

We have been discussing a move to Washington for a while now. We would like to live in a more rural environment with a slower pace of life. We would like to have weather that isn't just various varieties of "hazy sunshine." But I'm afraid. I'm afraid of finding a new job. I'm afraid of selling our house and trying to buy a new one. I'm afraid of looking for a new church and making new friends. I'm afraid of living on a dramatically reduced income. I'm afraid and it's very frustrating.

I'm afraid that if I start trusting God, he is going to ask me to do things that make me afraid. I'm afraid that I will have to dramatically change my habits. I'm afraid that God will want me to talk to people who unnerve me. I'm afraid that God will want me to go places I don't like (such as Las Vegas) and do the work of his kingdom. I'm afraid that God will want me to give up my self-satisfied middle-class American life. I'm afraid of change.

Tabitha has suggested that I pray about this. As with so many other things, I suspect she may be right.

1 comment:

Judy said...

Just remember, God does not use fear as a tool. It is not in His tool arsenal. The enemy does use it however, to keep us from action that God wants us to take. Take some risks, what's the worst that can happen - it's not likely to and the rewards might just be worth the risk. I agree with Tab, you should pray about it.