Last year a young lady who attends the church asked if I could give some driving lessons to her and her sister. So a few times we drove to an abandoned field nearby, and practiced driving.
A few weeks ago her sister reminded me it had been a long time since we’d done driving practice, so I promised to come by on Thursday. Since it’s the summer we met for the last two weeks for a bit of practice.
There was a huge…..and I mean HUGE improvement between their driving the first Thursday and the second Thursday
Because they weren’t scared anymore
The First week I drove them around the field a few times, and then stopped, and asked the younger sister to drive around it. She got behind the wheel, and tentatively started at about five miles per-hour.
I could tell she was afraid of the car! This is normal for those who aren’t used to driving, but obviously you can’t enjoy yourself and be frightened at the same time. So the first Thursday was focused on simply “getting used to the car.”
The second Thursday challenged them with exercises like reversing between buckets, and a form of parallel parking. Though these were challenging, by the end of our time together they could do it.
And most importantly they were no longer afraid of the car!
There is an important application here for missions…faith is not the absence of fear.
Practically this means it’s okay to be scared.
We often read Christ’s word’s in Matthew 6:25-34 and believe it means we shouldn’t fear. In reality fear or worry is a natural part of life, instead we are challenged not to have “anxiety.”
Anxiety is a heightened level of fear that consumes or controls us. Anxiety keeps us from doing the will of God. The important thing then isn’t to eliminate our fear (that’s almost impossible) but to have faith bigger than our fear.
The sisters chose to drive my car through the abandoned field even though they were scared. And the important thing is the more they drove, the less scared they became! In the same way the more I face my fears, the smaller they will become.
Satan knows this of course, which is why he makes our anxiety grow larger and larger over time. He doesn’t tell us not to face that fear (he’s much too wise for that). Instead he always tells us to face it….later
- When your stronger
- When you aren’t afraid
- When you have all the money
- When everything’s organized
- When there’s no risk involved
The problem is he knows that day will never come!
The life of faith isn’t about never being afraid. It’s about not letting our fears keep us from doing the Lord’s work