"Preach the gospel at all times, if necessary use words." - St. Francis of Assisi

Sunday, January 02, 2005

Are You a 'Fraidy Cat Christian?

"For God has not given us a spirit of FEAR, but of POWER and LOVE and DISCIPLINE." (2 Timothy 1:7)

As Christians, we have access to a power that our minds cannot quite comprehend. We are promised the power to heal the sick, cure the lame and cause the blind to see, the ability to move a mountain only by having faith and quite a few more. How often are we called to do these? If you are like me, it is not very often. Usually, all God wants us to do is to use any gifts or abilities He gave us for His Kingdom. It may be leading a Bible Study group, being a prayer warrior or sending encouraging cards, using your gift of music, etc. You know what your abilities are and also should be aware of the accountability you have for using them. So, "why are we Christians so afraid to use these gifts", he asks rhetorically. If we are good at talking to people, why do we shiver when asked to visit someone who is interested in our church? If we are skilled at leadership, why do we run when asked to serve as the chair of a committee?

Case in point.........I am a musician. It is a gift and talent from God and I have tried to acknowledge that since I was a young boy. Currently, I have the privilege of serving as a church musician at the best church in God's Kingdom (no bias, just fact). It is a fellowship of loving, caring, encouraging, Bible-believing, mission and ministry minded believers. I had been asked several weeks ago to begin playing for one of the newly restructured worship services at church. No sweat, I play all the time. No biggie, I'm really quite good at it. No problem-o, I like the style of worship in this service. However......da da dummm......Satan paid a visit a day or so ago and somehow got into my head and began to wreak havoc. I actually became very anxious and fearful about playing. What was I afraid would happen? That I would make a mistake? Nah, I can do that with great skill and expertise. Was I worried that the Pastor would stand up and throw a hymnal at me? I doubt it, he is a Godly man and has always been supportive and encouraging to me. Was I concerned that my worst dreams would come true and I would forget to wear pants to the service? Well, knowing the state of my mind somedays, that could possibly happen, however, I seriously doubt it. So, what was the big deal?

I took my eyes off God and began to look at my humanity. As a human, I can only play notes that are written on a page. However, as God's musician, I can hopefully take those same notes and serve as an accompaniment to worship. I am not a solo artist, nor do I want to be one. My only desire is to be an accompanist to those who lead worship and help to create an atmosphere where God can be felt.

The verse above struck me this morning out of the blue. God didn't create fear (or timidity) in me. Or you. Or anyone. He gave us Power and Love and Discipline. Once I re-focused myself on God's purpose in my life, then the anxiety and fear flowed out of me like water. I felt the calmness and assurance of God's Spirit that I've come to depend on for so many years. Did I make mistakes? Yep, but God was still there (and probably chuckling). Did the Pastor throw a book at me? Nope, he led us in a meaningful time of communion and worship. Did I have my pants on? Yep, I was safe this time.

When Satan pays you a visit and gives you a spirit of fear and worry about things, I would encourage you to recognize it and claim the promise made in 2 Timothy 1:7. God wants us to go about His work with boldness and power. Being brave enough to give a smile to the grocery clerk can share the essence of God. Being strong enough to see a need in your church or your community and helping to meet that need can show the Love of God in action.

Go with God, folks. His Love is more powerful than anything you may come against.

Be God's,
Jimmy

1 Comments:

At 8:41 PM, Blogger Suzii said...

I did not know you were a musician. What exactly are you musicianly inclined to instrumentate? LOL! (Sorry... I had mountain dew at work! My mind is whirring!)

I have tried my hand at music... it is definitely not my gift. I can enjoy it... and sing in my car or shower. My cousin has played the piano since she was 4. I LOVE PIANO!

 

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