Tuesday, September 7, 2010
“Protect yourself” is something that is ingrained in our hearts and minds from the time we are little kids. We are taught to be safety conscious. We are urged to “drive safe,” “take care of yourself,” and to do what it takes to protect our families, our material things, and the money we work hard to earn. Whether it’s strangers, unscrupulous friends who would take advantage of us, or simply losses that come with bad economic planning – we are warned to guard, protect, and shield our lives.
Protecting is important. As a mom, my first instinct is to always protect my kids. It doesn’t matter if we are at home, out at a restaurant, or in another country – their safety is always foremost in my mind. I think that’s part of my job.
As a woman, safety is important and feeling protected is important, as well. My husband can do a lot to ensure that I am safe and that I feel secure.
But I have been learning a concept in the last year that goes against everything my human nature wants to do. When my heart screams out “is it safe?’ my desire to serve the Lord is overcoming that fear and God is whispering to my heart to take the risk.
Yes, I am learning more and more to risk myself instead of protect myself. I am seeing how taking a risk on behalf of the Lord ends up in a multitude of blessings because the only thing I end up risking (most of the time) is my pride and my comfort issues. And God has such a great and personal way of taking care of those for me!
When I risk myself on behalf of a cause that I feel God has led me to… I usually feel freer. I feel more blessed and my self-esteem is filled with God’s love. It’s hard to fight against my own human nature. If everything inside of me wants to list out the reasons why something might be a little scary, a little hard, or a little uncomfortable; it’s hard to fight against that and go for it anyways. But with God’s help, baby step by baby step I am learning to face those fears and those obstacles that Satan so neatly stacks in my way. I am learning that by protecting myself; sometimes I’ve been protecting myself right out of God’s plans for my life. I’ve been protecting myself so much that I can’t be blessed, I can’t be used, and I can’t grow. The walls are too high, too strong, and too tight for me to break through them. If I can chip away at them bit by bit, I can start to see what has been on the other side – what it is that God wants me to see. I can see a little bit of how He wants to break my heart so that I can go out and make a difference on His behalf.
The road to serve the Lord is not always an easy one. In fact, if you’re on the right road?…It’s probably guaranteed to have it’s rough spots. But it’s also guaranteed to have its tender secrets. Secrets that never would be shown to us had we not risked walking in the way we felt led by God.
It’s easy to protect ourselves. We do that very well. But it’s much harder to risk ourselves. Risk our reputation, risk failure, risk safety. That’s the hard thing to do.
Even though I still fight against my own human nature screaming out to be safe in every area of my life…I’m wanting more and more to risk myself. Because I’d much rather risk it all and see the Glory of God at work than to live a long life never seeing Him work at all.