Do It Afraid by Grace Fox

» Posted on Jan 20, 2012 in Blog | 6 comments

This week I’m hosting Lynette Sowell with Cherry Blossom Capers, Ronie Kendig with Firethorn, Ada Brownell with Swallowed by Life, and Grace Fox with Moving from Fear to Freedom. If you want to enter the drawings for the books, please leave a comment on one of the post during the week with your email address. I will not enter you without an email address (my way to contact you if you win). If you don’t want to leave an email address, another way you can enter is to email me at margaretdaley@gmail.com. The drawings end Sunday (January 22nd) evening.

DO IT AFRAID by Grace Fox

I’m writing this at 32,000 feet, somewhere between London and Budapest. My final destination is Resita, Romania—the industrial city that produced the steel to build the Eiffel Tower. My reason for this trip is twofold: to minister among teens and young adults living with HIV/AIDS, and later, to help lead an evangelistic family camp in Poland.

Upon hearing about this venture, some people say, “Wow, good for you! I’d love to do something like that, but it won’t happen.”

“Why not?” I ask. “What’s holding you back?”

Some say, “I’m scared to fly.” Some reply, “I’m afraid of contracting HIV,” while others say, “I’m afraid of traveling in a country where I can’t speak the language.”

My answer? “Acknowledge those fears and then do it afraid.”

FEAR: FRIEND OR FOE?

Fear wears many faces: the fear of inadequacy, the fear of rejection, of failure, of financial insecurity, of an unknown future, and more. If left unchecked, it becomes our foe. It hinders us from embracing life as God intends, drenches us in anxiety, robs us of sleep, prompts us to make rash and foolish decisions, and sometimes causes physical illness. 

I’ve struggled with debilitating fear in the past, but I no longer let it rule me. I now view it as a catalyst for spiritual growth. For example, I believe that God often gives His followers tasks that stretch us beyond our comfort zone. Saying yes might feel unnerving, but doing so forces us to depend on Him. Accepting an assignment that’s far beyond our capability and comfort zone guarantees opportunity for us to experience God’s presence and power in new ways. Our faith grows stronger, and our understanding of God’s character grows deeper. Fear, then becomes our friend.

I’ve found this to be true in my writing and speaking ministry. This was not a role I sought. Rather, at age 41, I sensed God telling me to write. He gave clear instructions: interview two specific women and write their profiles. I felt totally inadequate and feared failure. But I said yes and did it afraid.

The result? Ten years later, I’ve written hundreds of articles for more than 40 magazines, authored four books, and produced a Bible study and teaching DVD about—you guessed it—moving from fear to freedom.

Ministry quickly expanded to include speaking at international women’s events, writers conferences, and on radio and TV. It’s been a white-knuckle ride, but I’ve experienced God’s presence and power in ways that I would have missed otherwise.

I’ve also found this to be true in my role as national co-director for International Messengers Canada (www.im-canada.ca). My husband and I assumed leadership in 2007 after the U.S. office asked us to do so. At first we wondered whether we were qualified for the new responsibilities. One of our roles would be to recruit, train, and lead short-term ministry teams to Eastern Europe. What if no one volunteered? What if our best attempts failed? Humanly speaking, we had good reason to feel scared. But we believed God was directing our steps, and so we said yes and did it afraid.

The result? We’ve witnessed God in action: He provided housing, a rent-free office, an administrative assistant, and short-term volunteers. This is our tenth ministry trip to Eastern Europe since 2007 and, on each trip, we’ve seen spiritual hunger satisfied as men and women have come to understand God’s unconditional love for them. What a thrill to be part of God’s kingdom-building team in the post-Communist bloc.

My tagline is “Leading Women in Fearless Faith.” Does that mean I never wrestle with fear? No. It simply means that I no longer allow fear to intimidate me. Rather, I counteract it by admitting it to God, asking others to pray for me, filling my mind with the truth of God’s word, and then moving forward—doing it afraid. That’s my prayer for you, too.

When God calls you to a task that leaves your knees knocking, say yes and do it afraid. Move forward and trust Him to equip you to get the job done. I guarantee you’ll discover a greater understanding of who God is and what His purposes are for your life.

6 Comments

  1. Fascinating thank you!!

  2. Margaret;
    What a great post! I can so identify with the author –
    Charles Swindoll once spoke to fear/courage – even wrote a book about it.
    I took something away from that that won’t leave me – when in fear (those knocking knees) and going forward under God’s direction – you are showing courage.
    Personally – my courage takes place when I’m moving forward on those knocking knees with bowed head – if you get my drift. 🙂
    So glad I read today’s posting – great reminder and affirmation!

    • I like the phrase, “Do it afraid.” It’s become a favorite of mine!

  3. What a wonderful testimony ! Fear hides in such subtle ways that I sometimes don’t recognize it at first. Thank you for the encouragement.

    • You’re right — fear can be very subtle sometimes. Many behaviors are rooted in fear but we often don’t recognize them as such. Very interesting study!

  4. Thanks for the encouragement!

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