The Courage to Move Forward

I have recently developed an interest in Korean television dramas and movies. They are very moving and a little different from American TV shows. Most of them only last 1 season. From the first episode to the last episode, you are watching a story unfold. The completed season is the completed story. I find them so gripping and compelling that I have pulled a couple of all nighters in the last week because I couldn’t stop watching.

The reason that I’m sharing this with you is because I just finished watching a show that I found to be really motivational and inspiring. It is called Good Doctor, and it is about a man in his late 20’s who wants to become a doctor. Now there is nothing strange in that, but this man has autism. He is also a Savant. For people who aren’t familiar with autism a savant is a person with autism who has extraordinary abilities in an area. For this young man, his area was medicine. He might have been a genius when it comes to knowing how the human body worked, but people were weary when it came to accepting him as a doctor. In the end, he overcame his disabilities and learned that he needed to be confident in who he was if he wanted others to be confident in him too.

While this story is fictional, it reminded me of many stories that I have heard through the years like the story of Nick Vujicic. Nick is a man whose story is becoming well known. He is a Christian motivational speaker from Australia. Nick was also born without any arms or legs. Nick has overcome his disability and is living his life to the fullest. He is working to spread the Gospel throughout the world and showing the world that nothing can hold you back if there is something that you want to do.

I find these types of stories inspirational and I find myself strengthened and encouraged by them.

But at some point I also find myself feeling ashamed.

I find myself feeling ashamed because most of the time I let fear and insecurity hold me back. As much as I want to move forward, I frequently find that I tell myself that I can’t do it or that I will just mess it up so it becomes easier to just sit back and watch life happen instead of taking part.

You know, fear can be a good thing, but fear can also be debilitating.

I was once asked what sin I struggled with the most, and I surprised the person when I answered, “fear.” Fear, in and of itself, is not a sin, but when fear keeps you from obeying the Lord, it becomes one.

Out of all of the people in the Bible, the story of Moses has always resonated with me. Moses is a man who was raised as a prince. He was born of a Hebrew woman, but he was raised by an Egyptian princess. Moses also had a disability. He didn’t speak well so when the Lord asked Moses to be the Lord’s mouthpiece to the Hebrew people Moses became scared. Even when the Lord said that He would place the words in Moses’ mouth and would give Moses the ability to do what the Lord had asked him to do Moses was too scared to do it, but the Lord made another way. He had Aaron speak for Moses. I have always wondered though…how would the story have unraveled if Moses had said “yes” to the Lord instead of “I can’t do it”? While Moses was a man of great faith, in this one area, he let fear hold him back.

Then skip forward a few hundred years to a girl named Mary. Mary is a young woman who loves the Lord. An angel of the Lord comes to her and tells her that she is to become a mother. She asked how it could happen since she was still a virgin, but she said, “Yes.” She had to have been scared. She was betrothed. It was a time when young women who became pregnant out of wedlock were stoned to death. She had to face rejection, cruelty from others, and disbelief, but she still said, “Yes.” She didn’t let fear hold her back.

It takes courage to walk in faith and obedience to the Lord, but courage doesn’t mean that you won’t have any fears. It means saying, “Yes,” and then moving forward in spite of your fears. That is what Mary did, that is what people like Nick Vujicic do. They say “Yes” to the Lord and move forward in spite of their fears.

courage

I have said it and I have heard other people say it:

Faith is opposite of fear.

But what if faith isn’t the opposite? What if fear accompanies faith? What if true faith is actually moving forward in spite of the fear?

When it comes to fear, we have a choice. We can cling to the fear or we can cling to the Lord. Moses clung to his fear that others wouldn’t listen to him because of his speech impediment and the Lord made another way. Mary clung to the Lord in spite of her fears. Moses was focused on what he could do. Mary was focused on what the Lord could do. If we cling to our fears, God will make another way, but what blessings do we miss because we didn’t cling to the Lord?

Maybe instead of trying to overcome our fears so that we can move forward we need to just move forward and cling to the Lord, trusting Him to take care of our fears.

 

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