Early last week I was asked if I would be willing to share at church, along with two other women, a brief testimony about being a mom…it could be about the joys and/or the struggles.
If you know me in real life, you know that public speaking is something that I never seek and feel very inadequate doing. Couple that with being a perfectionist and an introvert…it’s not the ideal recipe for peace.
It has been such a fear that I have let it control many decisions in my life. I remember many years ago, being asked to speak at a women’s event…I don’t even remember much of the details surrounding this but it was not a big deal but I immediately said NO…no prayer, thought or consideration…I ran as fast as I could. I vividly remember sitting in that event…knowing that I had missed an opportunity and that I had been disobedient.
A few years back, Carl and I were in leadership at another church and we as couples were “asked” to each give a 30 minute testimony and exhortation. Carl and I knew our appointed date for months in advance…I thought about “the talk” every. single. day. Actually the talk went well but it wasn’t easy at all. I think when it was over, I just breathed a sigh of relief that I could go back to normal life. Thanked God that I didn’t pass out or trip on the stairs.
Cut back to the present…when I was asked…the old fears crept in, my thoughts were…seriously? I’m deep like that!
Every fiber of my body was screaming…DON’T GO THERE…NO WAY…not only were the old fears front and center but the subject of motherhood is a touchy spot for me…like a minefield of barely healed wounds.
But as much as the noise of the fear choir tried to drown out any voice to the contrary…it didn’t have its say because I immediately was flooded with ideas, scriptures and words of what I would say. This was weird and this was scary. I consulted Carl and he said he completely supported me in sharing what God had been teaching me.
So on Tuesday afternoon, I clicked send to an email that said YES.
Immediately I was hit with…WHAT HAVE I DONE? Followed also by a sense of expectation…the first response was normal…the second was new.
I walked to my car to start the afterschool pick ups and I heard God asked me…What are you so afraid of? I said…I don’t like feeling so nervous. He said,
“Will you not risk 5 minutes of nervousness for Me?”
I was humbled by this…it brought everything into perspective. As I spent time with Him, I realized that perhaps I had never considered the person that asked…could they see something in me that I can’t fathom but God does? Could God be using them to be an instrument of change in my life? Maybe God is using them to bring something in me to the forefront. I had never looked at it this way before. I wonder how many messengers I have unknowingly killed.
Life was full this past week…more full than I had anticipated. I had said yes but God was going to have to take over.
I wrote as much as I could write in a stream of conscious type way on Tuesday night…planning to finish it on Wednesday…Wednesday had a mind of it’s own and I had only about 30 minutes before time to pick up kids…I tried to write and it was just a lead balloon…and I got a bit scared.
I told Him during a moment of utter fatigue and crankiness…I give up…I can’t do this…this is all yours.
Thursday came and I had Mother’s Day gifts and such to get in the mail or they would be late…where had the week gone? I printed out my ramblings…and started to rewrite and edit and by that afternoon it was done for the most part. Truly I think I spent about 90 minutes…
Friday and Saturday were filled with life but they were also filled with lies and lobs from the enemy…your writing is too sappy…remember how your voice sounds when you get nervous? why would they ask you? do you really think you have anything to say that hasn’t been heard before? There’s going to be a lot of people there…you can’t handle that. On and on it went and with each one I had to refute it with the truth that God was with me…and that His strength would perfect my weakness.
Sunday came as I knew that it would. I was a bit nervous but not like I usually have been. I was more excited to get to the other side. I really felt that God had given me the words to share and all I needed to be was the vessel.
I felt like it was time to walk through the “something new” door.
I took my cue during service and got up and spoke…my voice didn’t sound weird…people laughed in the places that I thought were funny…that is a good thing (the opposite would be bad news)…it went really well…even typing that is difficult but it did go really well and as fast as I descended the stairs after I was finished…I didn’t trip or faint or anything.
So…why am I telling you this?
I am telling you this because God told me something yesterday…and I am telling on Him…I am telling you.
He told me that it is time to stop saying that I can’t speak in public. He told me that this is no longer my identity. He told me that I have claimed this as a part of who I am long enough…and basically said that I didn’t believe He was big enough to do anything about it.
He told me that I can now say instead…I am working on my public speaking. I don’t have to be Beth Moore…I just have to be me.
I have told this story and I have rehearsed this story…but is an old story…it is history. It had become my convenient and comfortable reflex response.
It was a struggle yesterday to hear positives from others because the first thing I wanted to say was to focus right back on who I have known myself to be.
Our words are powerful…our words can shape who we are for the better or to our detriment. Words from others can be just as powerful…they can stop us in our tracks…fast. It is important to ask God how He sees us.
Is there an area of fear that you need to ask the Lord about?
Is there something that you just have repeated to yourself enough that you believe it is true? Is God asking you to do something hard right now…and you are afraid?
If you would like prayer related to an area you want to let God walk with you into a place of newness…let me know. You don’t have to even comment in this forum…you could email me and I will pray for you.
I can be contacted at wassuphelen at yahoo dot com.
One of the scriptures during my sharing was John 10: 10…about how Jesus has come to give us an abundant life. I shared about how that abundant life is for now…I am sure I have shared this on the blog before. God wants us to step into our lives and not watch them go by us because we are too afraid to move…to trust God. Do you remember what is in front of that portion of scripture…it is all about the one that does not want us to have an abundant life…just the opposite. That enemy of the soul’s entire life goal is to steal, kill and destroy…who? US! Don’t let him anymore…step out of fear and into the abundant and overflowing life that God wants so much for each one of us.
Thank you for those that knew and prayed…thanks for the emails that said YES YOU CAN…and thanks for the squeeze just before service that let me know you had been praying and knew what this meant…all of it wrapped up with God made all the difference.
*My proofreader is not working for some reason…I have read it over several times but if there are typos…my apologies.
**Please don’t forget to subscribe to this blog…not for me…but for your convenience of knowing when something new is posted…besides I am thinking about a giveaway and wouldn’t want you to miss it.
***If you leave a message, please check back…I am trying to comment within the body of your comment not a new comment.
****The Mother’s Day post was updated with website information regarding the necklace I was holding.
*****Thanks for reading this epic post…sorry for the high word count…yikes!