Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Shine Lord and My Terror Shall Cease

Shine, Lord and my terror shall cease
The blood of atonement apply
And lead me to Jesus for peace
The rock that is higher than I
Speak, Saviour, for sweet is thy voice
Thy presence is fair to behold
I thirst for thy Spirit with cries
And groanings that cannot be told.*

-*Encompassed With Clouds of Distress (Augustus Toplady/Steve Elliot)

It has come to my attention this week just how fearful I am. I fear both sides of a situation. I fear what will happen if something comes through and what will happen if it does not. I fear staying in New York but I also fear leaving. I fear singleness but I also fear companionship. I fear what life as a performer would look like and what it would look like if I wasn’t.

What is kind of incredible is that there have been times when my worst fears have been realized… and yet I am still in one piece. Satan has created an environment within me where the fear of possibilities is far more paralyzing than the reality of any catastrophe.

A life lived in fear is not a life lived in trust in God. And therefore it is not a life lived in freedom. It is a life in complete bondage to the possibility of God not coming through for me… or at least God not coming through for me in the way that I want him to.

My pastor talked about the sins that crouch at our doors this past week (Genesis 4: 6-7). The ones that we are blind to. The ones that we minimize and rationalize. And then, he said, they master us.

The sin crouching at my door is my desire to control. And right now, I am at a point where I have zero control over every situation in my life. Well, I guess I always have zero control, but I usually am able to pretend that I do. And since this moment does not allow me to be deceived by the illusion that I have control, Satan is whispering to me that the One who is in control does not have my best interest at heart:

If sometimes I strive, as I mourn
My hold of thy promise to keep,
The billows more fiercely return,
And plunge me again in the deep:
While harassed and cast from thy sight,
The tempter suggests with a roar,
"The Lord has forsaken thee quite;
Thy God will be gracious no more."*

The goal has been all about me. I have to make the goal all about my Lord. The only way to relinquish control, to get rid of the fear is to fix my eyes on a different prize. I am constantly relearning that a life that is happy and easy is not always the life that is best for me. Because sometimes it is not the life that draws me to my Lord. My goal cannot be comfort.
I have desires, but I hold them with open hands. And I ask that God will make my goal Him... that He will make my goal Christ alone and then take me down the path that best helps me get there.

Yet, Lord, if thy love hath designed
No covenant blessing for me,
Ah, tell me, how is it I find
Some sweetness in waiting for thee?
Almighty to rescue thou art;
Thy grace is immortal and free.
Lord, succor and comfort my heart
And make me live holy to thee.*

(This song has rocked my world. I love it when God uses a piece of art to speak so deeply to me. If you go here: it is the last song on the page. Enjoy.)

(P.S. Photo by Susan Nacorda.)

1 comment:

Sarah said...

Still reading dear one...:) Your words are so fantastic--thank you for always pointing us to Him!