This wasn’t the photo I originally wanted to accompany this blog. I was hoping for a screenshot from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, but everything I found was either too small or too blurry to be of any use. It’s probably just as well, as this photo works better.
There’s a familiar adage, an old saying, an oft-clichéd phraseology that goes something like this: “Yeah right, when salmon fly!”
Over the years, or what feels like years, this time-worn expression has evolved to convey an unwavering immovability among those who have long since thought nothing good could possibly happen to them, or if it did, it would mean the beginning of a cruel, terrible, life-long cosmic joke.
Such has been my battle cry, my mantra, my modus operandi if you will, for quite some time. I claim to be cautiously optimistic, but in reality I’m a reckless pessimist. If I think it won’t work out, I’m free to be a goofball and revel in the utter hopelessness of it all. But if there’s so much as a glimmer of hope, a speck of possibility, an iota of good fortune, I find myself scarcely able to stand on my own two feet.
I tell you this not solely for humorous purposes, but because it’s indicative of a bigger problem. It’s not scriptural to think God’s out to get me, or that he’s only going to give me something good so he can snatch it away at a later date, especially after I’ve set my heart on it. This is wrong, this is stupid, and it’s what I’ve been thinking as of late.
I’ve been seeking God’s direction for a new job. It looks like he’s answered my prayers. Why then am I so uncertain? Why did I wait so long to act? Is my faith so small that I don’t expect God to hear me when I talk to him? What’s wrong with me?
It’s become much clearer: fear is a recurring theme in my life. Fear of people, fear of the unknown, fear of losing what little clout I possess. Fear of inadequacy, of not measuring up—fear I’ve been wasting my time in pursuit of things that don’t really matter. Fear of responsibility and accountability. You name it, I fear it.
Lately, in seeking God’s will, I’ve been given clear instruction in a matter of no small consequence. I’ve struggled with taking steps towards that end, tiny, little baby steps if you will, and as such I’m encountering vast quantities of fear. Truckloads, even! Part of my fear stems from realizing I can’t do certain things on my own, and rather than facing embarrassing failure, I simply retreat.
(17) Therefore to him who knows to do good, and does not do it, to him it is sin.
There’s no doubt in my mind that where I’m being led is where I need to be. It’s the process of getting there that I find nerve-racking. I have no choice but to trust in God for the strength to make leaps of faith.
(13) I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.