We are all affected by it. We are motivated by it. We are paralyzed by it. It can reveal our true character. It can cause us to react in unusual ways. We all have our own personal fears. Fear of failure (financial, career, in our marriage, as a parent, in school). Fear of being alone. Fear of the unknown. Fear of regret. Fear of snakes, spiders, little people (you know who you are ;)), and things that go bump in the night.
In the last couple of years, my fear has mostly been wrapped around one item: Being a mother. I was afraid that my baby wouldn't come. Even though God promised me that he would. Fear that my heart would break when my foster children left. Even though God promised me that he would not devastate me. Fear that I would do all this and be left with nothing to show for it. Even though the scriptures tell me that that is a lie:
"For God is not unjust; he will not overlook your work and the love that you showed for his sake in serving the saints, as you still do. And we want each one of you to show the same diligence so as to realize the full assurance of hope to the very end, so that you may not become sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.
When God made a promise to Abraham, because he had no one greater by whom to swear, he swore by himself, saying, "I will surely bless you and multiply you." And thus Abraham, having patiently endured, obtained the promise. Human beings, of course, swear by someone greater than themselves, and an oath given as confirmation puts an end to all dispute. In the same way, when God desired to show even more clearly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of his purpose, he guaranteed it by an oath, so that through two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible that God would prove false, we who have taken refuge might be strongly encouraged to seize the hope set before us. We have this hope, a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters the inner shrine behind the curtain,
And now that God has miraculously brought me my baby (read our story here) I have a different fear...that someone will take my baby away. You see, Isaiah is not adopted yet. He is called a legal risk placement which pretty much means that the plan is adoption, but anything could happen. With Isaiah's case, the risk is minute but it is there until the ink dries on the paper and he is legally mine. The risk is there.
But you know what else is there? A reminder that God is true, real, just, good, and keeps his promises. As I sit here, drinking my coffee and typing this, God's promise to me is in his crib, butt-in-the-air, napping. Multiple times a day, I put my reminder of God's goodness in and out of a car seat. Every night, my husband rocks our reminder that God is real and working today, to sleep. I am not saying the reason I believe God is real and good hinges on Isaiah, but on days when I am struggling with believeing, I look at him, and think about how he was brought to us and wonder: how can I deny God? Last night, my husband and I were praying over Isaiah's case and the Lord gently reminded me that he didn't need any help bringing Isaiah to us. That actually, when I finally stopped trying to manipulate and control the situation - then my hands were open to recieve my son.
I confess friends, I have been back to my old tricks: calling caseworkers, sending emails, etc to make sure our termination date in July goes off without a hitch. Then I was reminded of something one of my friends said: "You don't have to do anything to get God to be good and loving and fulfill his promises. You can't do anything to make that happen because it is already true. It is already in his character". So I am going to try to let go of the fear or at least loosen my grip because Psalm 34:4 says: "God met me more than halfway, he freed me from my anxious fears". Amen.
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