You, Before You Were Afraid

You, Before You Were Afraid

I got my first taste of success when I was fifteen and I created a shirt to sell to people at my school. I started taking pre-orders, but within no time the administration was jumping all over me saying I didn’t have permission to do what I was doing. They were “no” people who didn’t approve of anything out of the ordinary. They gave me lots of hoops to jump through and were just generally annoying.

Their attempts to kill my idea didn’t even phase me. I didn’t have anything to lose so I pushed through, made the shirts, and the whole deal was a success. I think back to that experience often. Life was so simple and I was so confident. But now, lots of years down the road, it’s hard to be as optimistic. There’s lots more to lose. Lots more at stake. And I’ve seen just enough things not work that it’s hard to be optimistic. I tend to live in loss-aversion mode rather than trying new things.

One of the big questions I ask people in my life coaching program is: When was the last time you hit a homerun? The last time you swung for the fences and it worked. I hear lots of stories of “glory” moments. But then typically, they say something like, “But that was before…” Fill in the blank: Before the divorce, before the kids, before the injury, before I lost it all.

Experience can really beat you up and leave you feeling a little less confident and a little more afraid.

I’m convinced that a lot of God’s sanctifying work in us is about helping us unlearn bad programming. He wants us to see ourselves as he sees us. He wants us to embrace how he made us. Most of us got a glimpse of this early on, before we got all beat up and fearful.

Think back to a time when you weren’t afraid. What did you do? What did it feel like?

Now, what would you do today if you weren’t afraid? Step out and be the un-afraid person you used to be. Get back to who God says you can be and who he says you already are because of Christ.

Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. – 1 John 3:2