Since I was a child I’ve struggled with fear. Fear of man, fear of health problems, fear of rejection. It was a gripping and suffocating problem to a point where I’d have panic attacks at 3 in the morning and allow it to devour my joy and control my life. A little over a year ago I began an adventure with God that has been walking me out of fear and into truth and I believe one day I will be completely free.
It began in my DTS (Discipleship Training School) when I got a quarter sized kidney stone and had to go home. It then continued through my outreach in Taiwan and the beginning of my School of Biblical Studies. I’d been asking myself “why” everyday. Why do I struggle with fear? Why have I gone through certain things? Why is this still something I have to face daily? And the hardest, where are you in this God? Well, I received an answer.
My school is currently studying Jeremiah. In our first class I was overwhelmed and in awe of God and his presence. Jeremiah was called as a young man to go and share hard news with the people of Judah. He was to share that God was going to use their enemies to execute judgment on them for all the sin they had committed. He was afraid to declare this, but he decided that God was worth doing anything for. He put away his societies view of what the appropriate age to be in ministry was as well as his fear of lacking in ability and chose to be obedient to God. In this harsh prophecy, God gives the people hope and comfort in restoration. In Jeremiah 18:5-11 there’s an illustration of a potter and clay. Through this our teacher, Deb Possin, so beautifully explained that God was telling the people they were going to go through this hardship and judgment, and that it had to happen in order for them to be REFORMED so that they could do greater things than they could’ve before.
Don’t get me wrong, my take away from this was not that God was giving me a kidney stone, allowing hard emotional disappointments, and stretching me to new depths in order to punish me for my sins. What I am saying is that God allowed me to face these things so that I could be reformed for greater things that I couldn’t have achieved before without those burdens. Why? Because He loves me so deeply.
He loves us so much that He doesn’t let us stay in one place. He doesn’t leave us where we are comfortable because He sees and knows we could be so much greater. He challenges us and sometimes it feels as if we’re completely broken, like a clay pot, but it’s not so we will sit in that crumbled place or be in bondage by those things, it’s so that He can mold us into something so much better, because He loves us and it’s for His glory. What a beautiful thing, to have a savior that loves us so much that He walks WITH us through our pain, He cares for us, He’s been through it all, and He knows what’s best even when we don’t understand.
I have found freedom in experiencing God and seeing how so very worthy He is. Even if it gets harder or I face something terminal, He is with me and He is reforming me for greater things and He loves me. I want to be like Jeremiah and walk out of fear and not be held captive by the world because I know I have the King of Kings, the Lord of Lords, the Almighty Savior standing beside me and reforming me.