I'm scared of a lot of things.
Silly things: the dark, big bugs, balloons popping, sharks in the lake (as if that's even possible), not getting enough likes on Instagram.
But there are big things too. I'm scared of running alone on certain paths or walking home late at night. I'm scared of graduating college without any definite plans. I'm scared I won't make enough money, I won't impress my family, I won't make my college degree "worth it." I'm scared I'm going to live a life disengaged with the world around me - that I'll never get my hands dirty and really serve others by sacrificing myself. I'm scared of failure. I'm scared of the future.
There's a difference between being afraid and being uncomfortable.
Discomfort can compel us. It can force us into taking risks, into making changes, into being "better." Fear can paralyze us. It can cause us to run away from challenges, to hide from any possibility of truly living. Fear can force us into a dark corner and never let us out.
We weren't made to live in fear.
As a senior in college, I'm afraid of not being good enough. I'm afraid that who I imagined myself to be four years ago is not at all who I am. I'm afraid to let my GPA fall below a certain number, I'm afraid to miss out on any good classes, to fail to love my friends well before we go our separate ways. I'm afraid of people asking me "what's next?" and not having an answer. I'm afraid I'll get into my dream graduate school and be unable to afford it. I'm afraid that I don't have a "dream job" or a 10-year-plan.
But we were not made to live in fear.
The world feels scarier everyday. Just look around - read the news, walk down the street, talk to a friend. We are a hurting, broken fearful world, and we cannot ignore that.
But we weren't made to live in fear.
I'm scared of a lot of things. We all are, because that's what sin does to us. The Enemy tells us to be afraid, because guess what - when we live in fear, we live in a state of distrust.
We refuse to trust that we have a perfect Heavenly Father. We refuse to trust how much He loves us. We refuse to trust that He loves us so much that He sent His very own Son to die for us. We forget to trust that His Spirit is living inside of us. We forget to trust that we were not meant to be slaves to our fear.
We weren't made to live in the darkness that is a distrust in Him. We are sinful, but redeemed. We are broken, made whole. Jesus has entered into our darkness and brought Light to the world.
There's a lot of discomfort as we head into 2017. But I'm not scared anymore. I trust the Lord: His goodness, His provision, His promises.
I wasn't made to live in fear.