Faith, Fear, and Focus
Picture yourself standing on one leg in the middle of a balance beam, with both hands supporting the things in your life that you consider being most important. What is your next step? Isaiah 43:1 says, "Don't fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine." Fear decreases our hope and limits our victories. Fear is real. It is an unpleasant emotion that is usually caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous and likely to cause us pain or discomfort. There are times in my life when I am fearful. I used to tell myself that I could avoid my fears, stressors, and anxieties by pretending that they did not exist. I felt that if no one else knew that I was afraid, then I would have control over my fears. I became an expert at hiding my fears, and instead of validating that I was fearful, I would work hard to keep them buried. Although this appeared to be a perfect solution, over time, my fear would find its way back to the surface. Fear shows up differently for each of us. Sometimes fear presents itself as self-doubt, procrastination, or excuses for why something is unattainable. We unconsciously tell ourselves that we are not good enough or smart enough or undeserving before we try. We put off projects or let someone else take the lead because we are afraid of failing. We delay things indefinitely because we have convinced ourselves that it wouldn't work. We work for fear, but faith works for us.
Faith is the complete trust or confidence in someone or something and Hebrews 11:1 says that “faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For me, faith is and has always been my focus. I know that Jesus is the son of God and that by His grace, I can do all things. When we are faithful, we take steps closer to achieving our goals, and we give ourselves grace when there is a deviation in the plan. Having faith allows us to make mistakes, have a terrible day, and be upset for a moment without feeling the need to quit. I am choosing to focus on faith. Instead of worrying about the mortgage or my other debt, I think about how amazing it is that the investments that I have made have gotten me to where I am today. When I focus on faith, I remember that God would not and has not given me anything that I couldn’t handle. When we focus on our faith, we see that there's hope.