Sunday, 22 July 2018

M Michele's Musings

He Makes Me Want to Shout

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Football season has rolled to an end with the last valiant team left standing as the winner of the Super Bowl. As my husband and I watched the games this year leading up to the eventful culmination of the Eagles win of the treasured Lombardi trophy and Super Bowl rings I caught glimpses of the roaring crowds. Throughout the games the animated multitude stood or jumped excitedly; waving arms, shouting at the top of their lungs urging their favorite team on to victory. They didn’t care who was watching them. There was no embarrassment or cringing. The fans were bold and unflinching in their enthusiasm. They were not afraid to stand, jump, wave arms, yell, scream and shout for their beloved team though millions of viewers eyes were upon them through the television lens that captured the game and the surroundings.

Recently, I have had these same feelings bubbling up and burning deep within my soul; excitement and an urging to shout, yell and scream because I want to share God’s word with the world. I want to shout from the roof tops that Jesus loves you and me.   I want to lift my hands, dance and twirl all the while extoling how great is our Lord. For me, this is not something that comes naturally. Even in the middle of an exciting game I am usually the “stick in the mud.” I have never been one that stands, wave arms or jumps much less shouts and yells even in the most exciting of circumstances. Though the desire is there I never act on these impulses because, as a rule, I am extremely shy and afraid of exhibiting my feelings. Yet, when I look back on my life I can see how far I have come. I am amazed that these emotions are rising up inside of me. The fear that once dominated me and controlled me now has a much quieter voice in my life.

I remember, as a young girl, I was outgoing, talkative, full of laughter and fun. I remember being vocal and standing up against bullies attempting to protect those that could not defend themselves. I was a “shouter.” Then one day a group of those “bullies” got together and beat me up. I don’t think it was bad but it had a detrimental effect on me that would start a pattern of extreme fear overflowing in my life. From that day forward, like a turtle, I pulled back into my protective shell. Though I had a wonderful home life with great parents who encouraged me all the time I couldn’t seem to push past the fears that would come to assail me.

Fear flooded into every single area of my life; physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. Everything I began I ended up quitting when any challenge at all was involved. I was terrified of competing in front of people. I was afraid of failure, loosing or making mistakes. In school I was afraid to give reports and often developed overwhelming stomach cramps opting for a failing grade.   My mother even brought me to the doctor (who I was afraid of) and he declared I was in perfect health and a hypochondriac!   But the pain was real. I realize now it was all psychological. The fear was so overwhelming that it was producing negative physical problems.

I often prayed and asked God to let me die before I had to face anything new. You name it; I was afraid of it. I didn’t want to face it. The fears were irrational yet very real in my mind. The fears stopped me from pushing forward. I was stopped in my tracks on everything I might have attempted to do. I didn’t know how to push past the fears unless life forcibly pushed me through and over the things I was afraid of. Needless to say, God didn’t answer those crazy prayers; I survived and made it through a lot of things I was afraid of.

             Still, though I had conquered some things, fear still ruled my life. Then, when I was about 24 years old I really put my trust in God and began to seek a relationship with Him through Jesus. I can now look back and see where, little by little, He orchestrated circumstances and special people who loved me and encouraged me, to begin to take out the fear in my life. I just had to be willing to put my hand in His and trust Him to get me through those things.

Fear stops us from going forward in life.  Fear causes negative reactions to burst forth.  They cause us to back up and run from things we know that we should do or deal with.  Fear is the exact opposite of faith.  Faith motivates, encourages and urges forward. When fear dominates we will not move forward in obedience to God’s callings on our life. We put up imaginary barriers and negative thoughts control our actions or lack of action. Pushing past our fears is not always easy and sometimes we think that it is impossible. Of course that is a lie and the Bible says “For with God nothing shall be impossible.” God desires that we begin to let go of and release those fears so that He can use us for His kingdom. The Bible tells us in 2 Timothy 1:7, “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” Romans 8:15 says, “For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, "Abba, Father."” Romans 8:15 is so true. Fear is a hard, unfair slave master and we are driven to obey the fears that dwell within our hearts. We truly become a slave to those fears.

The first step in conquering fear is to release the fear into God’s care. We need to begin to trust God and have faith that He will help us overcome our fears. How do we do this? We must come into the “sanctuary of God.” We must come into His presence and His peace. We must rest and trust Him.   Finally, we are to obey Him. If fear keeps us from doing something God desires us to do we must take steps of faith and obedience toward whatever God is leading us to do.

Fears often loom larger than life in our eyes just like the ten men sent to spy out the Promised Land. God had given them marvelous promises and yet in Numbers 13:33 they said, “And there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, of the giants: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight.” They had seen God do miraculous feats on their behalf but they didn’t trust that He would continue to be on their side and they let fear stop them from doing God’s will. Their fear also kept them from the blessings that God desired to bring into their lives. Worse yet, their fear stopped everyone that was involved with them from receiving blessings as well. They, and all that listened to them, were left in the wilderness for forty years until the last one died because of disobedience that stemmed in part from fear. We often think that fear doesn’t hurt anyone but ourselves but that is not true. Our fears often influence and affect those around us. Fear stops us from doing God’s will and touching lives for God’s glory.

Since giving my heart and life to Christ I have been freed to walk in obedience to God’s calling on my life with a joy and excitement without fear and trepidation of heart. Ephesians 2:10 tells us, “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” As I contemplate all that God has done in my life, He makes me want to shout and declare His wonderous works with others. Though I am still shy and I don’t actually shout, scream, jump and yell on the outside I am doing it in on the inside. I am cheering for my favorite Team in the world, God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit right smack dab in the middle of His great football field, Earth! The shouting I do is with pen and paper; sharing His wonderful love by writing, hopefully, bringing words of encouragement and blessings to the reader.

You and I are special to God and He has a purpose for each of our lives. We must not let fear stop us from going forward in all that God has ordained for our lives. As sports fans so ably do, let’s be shouters for Him in our own special and unique way. Yes, share His word, preach, scream, yell, jump, dance and praise Him in the stands of life without fear when the opportunity presents itself.

Love in Christ, Michele

Copyright February 2018 ~ Michele LeDoux Abshire

Columnist: Michele's Musings

Picture Michele Abshire is a housewife, mother, grandmother, and full time legal assistant. She has been published in Lake Charles, Louisiana publications, Christian Star Newspaper and Gumbeaux Magazine.  

Michele began writing notes of encouragement to people God put on her heart which led her in the direction of writing short encouraging stories, letters, essays and analogies.  This quickly became a ministry for her.  

Michele's vision is to reach people with encouraging messages that will lift their heart and bring joy for sorrow and hope for discouragement. Michele enjoys your feedback so leave a comment in the form at the bottom of the page or email her at  

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