In preparation for my first marathon, I scrawled the words of Joshua 1:9 on a scrap of paper and tucked it in my running pouch. The verse reads, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” I wanted to fearlessly face and finish the 42 KM challenge. In order to do so, I knew the race would first need to be won in my mind.
Often, when faced with a new challenge I am also faced with fear. Unknowns are daunting and often underscored with uneasiness. Questions collect. Will I succeed? What if I make a mistake? And in the case of a marathon, what if I don’t finish? It’s not hard to see why I chose Fearless as my Word of the Year!
This past fall, I realized my long-time goal of publishing a book. In September, I released my novel, One More Tomorrow, and November marked the release of my devotional journal, Soul Focus. Numerous new opportunities have come as a result, such as joining Melinda on See Hear Love, and countless other firsts. Each of these has offered me a choice: do I choose fear or faith?
As I enter the coming year, I am choosing to grow in fearlessness regarding the things God is giving me. Fearlessness is birthed in quietness. It is secured when I rest in God and trust in his moment-by-moment provision in all the details of my life. It solidifies when I claim verses such as 1 Thessalonians 5:18 which tells me to “give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” Instead of fear, I can choose thankfulness in everything, especially amid stretching circumstances that cause me discomfort.
In doing so, I can live in the ever-available peace God offers. I can move bravely, boldly, unashamed, and unapologetic of the message God has entrusted me to share. There may be bumps, I may have to pause for further directions, and may come face to face with my imperfections and fears. But I can also come face to face with the One who is my help and my portion (Lamentations 3:34), and the One who reminds me to be fearless.
This year, in place of defaulting to fear, I’m determined to grow in faith and fearlessly embrace the excitement of the new challenges God is giving me. Will you join me?