It’s been 45 days since we signed documents, did homework to debrief and ended or time in Phuket, Thailand.
I did not want to leave, a large part of me felt I was being ripped away.
For the past 45 days, I’ve been afraid. I was afraid I would lose the initial heart for Phuket. I was afraid I would come home unchanged and easily willing to slip back into old habits. One day, a little while ago, I wrote this journal entry:
“Dear Jesus, I am leaving the people I’m wanting to pray for in Your hands. You want and I want You to do a work in my heart. Jesus, I want to give You every fear I have. I want to be free and fully in Your presence and peace.
“What can I change by worrying? What do I have to fear?
“I Am afraid of being stuck; I am afraid of what others think – even if I don’t know what they’re thinking; I am afraid of being caught/found out that I am not as invested in work as I feel I should be; I am afraid of hurting people – so much so that I run, and in doing so I do hurt people; I am afraid of being a disappointment, and often feel that I am; I am afraid of not doing enough/saying enough and of doing too much/saying too much.
“It’s when I’m not focusing on You that I spiral. I see the waves, I forget You are there.”
Fear is prevalent in Canada and in Thailand. The difference is how it looks.
A while ago I took a fear test (The Four False Beliefs Test). And if I am completely honest, in all four areas, I have fear. Fear of failure, of shame, of rejection, of punishment…
A few days ago, Jared (my husband) and I went to a worship night with the Exchange Church – one of the churches that went to Thailand back in April. We were all sitting, praying and singing in a circle and that circle we were in brought me back to the night on Patong Beach. The room we were in was so familiar, too. It was like the room above the coffee shop where we sang and prayed and shared from our hearts.
I had a picture that night, of myself standing on a beach, waves gently lapping at the shore, palm trees waving in the breeze. Jesus was standing on the water, extending His hand out to me to join Him.
Now here is the interesting thing, when I focused on Jesus, the rest of the world disappeared. I didn’t notice if the waves stayed calm or the weather became stormy.
If I had focused on the waves or the view, I forget Jesus. He disappears from my sight and all my worries become overwhelming.
1 John 4:18 – Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid it is for fear of punishment and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.
There is no fear in love.
Let that sink in. If you have fear, if you are afraid or worried, you are not understanding and fully experiencing love.
There is no room in fear for love.
When we focus on Jesus and on God’s grace, the waves of worry disappear. But when we focus on the waves of the world, Jesus disappears from our view.
What would your life look like if you were fully experiencing love?