She Stands... Bold - Sheree Minturn
Fear comes in all shapes and sizes and what one person fears, another does not. Our circumstances, our situations and our upbringings are all different, therefore the things that cause fears and concerns are different. I’ve been watching with fascination the volcanic eruptions happening in both Hawaii and in Guatemala at the moment. Both of these volcanoes have caused incredible damage, loss of life and have transformed their geographical surroundings. But these volcanoes are not a new addition to their country. They didn’t spring up overnight, magically appearing all of a sudden. No, these volcanoes have been sitting there for centuries, laying dormant and looking pretty.
People feel safe enough to build homes in their shadow, oblivious to the danger that lurks beneath the ground, not fearful enough to keep their distance from these mountains. But then the natural thing happens and these volcanoes begin to erupt. And then these pretty mountains that people never gave a second thought about, cause fear and create havoc and destroy people’s lives. That analogy can be applied to our life. We can be cruising through life and thinking that things are going ok, not giving much thought to areas of our lives that we may have pushed deep down and then suddenly, BOOM!
We are ambushed by a situation and we feel fear begin to course through our body. Maybe it’s financial pressure, maybe it’s having to speak publicly or having to be involved in a conflict. Whatever the trigger is for that volcano of fear, it causes our hearts to race and worry begins to set in. And before we know it, the oblivion we have been walking in through life has morphed into a fearful situation. So how do we deal with these kinds of fear ambushes? How do we prepare for the unknown?
You see, a lot of us live like the people at the base of the mountain, we live in blissful ignorance, not preparing our hearts or lives for a change in our circumstances. We build pretty life houses and then become despaired when it gets covered in lava. We aren’t prepared. We get upset, we get fearful and we can fall to pieces. Preparation for the times when fear wants to ambush us is an absolute key to how we do life together and well. The Bible says in Ecclesiates 3 -
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:
a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.”
At any time our life is going to experience all of the above things and we can’t live in the ignorant shadow of a volcano and not prepare our hearts and our souls for times like these in our lives. Being bold in unsettling times of our lives comes from being prepared, by being grounded in the word and promises of God and by trusting God through every scenario and season, whether good or bad. Boldness for the fearful situations that can suddenly erupt into our lives comes from building our lives on a solid foundation.
The Bible shares a story about two men who built their own houses. One went for the lovely beach setting, building on a sandy shifting foundation, where the other decided to build on a solid rock foundation. When a bad season came, when fear raised it’s ugly head, the house built on the sand fell down because it wasn’t built on a solid foundation. Build your life on a solid foundation in God, be prepared in the good seasons for the not so good seasons. Don’t let yourself down. Don’t build your life in the ignorance of a volcano. Prepare your life for the scary stuff so that when those things rise up, you can pull out your boldness without a second thought. And when you do this, you will navigate life out of a 2 Timothy 1:7 way of living - that God didn’t give us a spirit of fear, but instead filled us with love, power and a sound, strong mind!